• The man was introduced to the girl's family by a driver, who acted as a mediator
  • The police arrived at the house where the "sale" was supposed to happen
  • They arrested eight people including the girl's mother and grandmother

A 61-year-old man in India has ended up behind bars for trying to buy a minor girl to look after him.

The police said the man, identified as Syed Ali, had offered $4,000 for the 13-year-old girl. The accused, a divorcee, hailed from the southern state of Telangana, reported India Today.

Ali wanted someone to take care of him, as his wife had left him six years ago. It was then that Ali was introduced to Akeel Ahmed, a local driver.

Ahmed informed Ali about the girl, and the two decided to approach her mother with the deal. Acting as Ali's mediator, Ahmed offered Rs 5 lakh ($6,672) to the family in exchange for the girl. The girl's family agreed to the deal, but it fell through after Ali said he wouldn't pay more than Rs 3 lakh ($4,000).

The girl's family, already facing financial constraints after her father abandoned them, decided to proceed with the agreement.

The plan was to hand over the money and take the girl from her relative's house Sunday.

However, some police officials, who got wind of the illegal activity, had been monitoring them. The officers, who arrived at the location, saw Ali, Ahmed and eight other people, including her mother and grandmother, at the house. The accused were arrested immediately.

The police said they will be charged with immoral trafficking. The accused will also be booked under the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act, Times Now News reported.

Similar trafficking of girls is rampant in India and, according to reports, as many as 5,000 children are being trafficked every year despite strict laws against child labor and prostitution. As per India's National Crime Records Bureau, 2,222 child trafficking cases were registered in 2020.

In an incident reported recently, the police busted a gang that abducted minor girls from impoverished areas. The gang sold these children to older men. Six men were arrested, including a 52-year-old man who "married" a 12-year-old girl he purchased from the gang. The police said the gang also employed women who would lure young girls, offering money and better living standards in cities.

Representation. Pixabay