KEY POINTS

  • Salma Khatoon reportedly sold the baby without her husband knowing
  • When the husband asked about the child, she cooked up a kidnapping story
  • She also approached police to report that the baby had been abducted
  • It was later found that she had handed the baby to a woman in exchange for $670

A mother in desperate need of money has been accused of selling her 3-month-old son and fabricating an abduction story to cover up the deal.

The incident came to light Sunday after Salma Khatoon, of Gorakhpur, a city in the northern Indian state of Uttar Pradesh, approached police to report that her boy had been kidnapped.

Khatoon reportedly told police that an unknown woman clad in a red saree had snatched her child before fleeing in an SUV earlier that day.

"Suspicion grew as the mother kept changing her statements and narrated the story of kidnapping," Sonam Kumar, superintendent of police, said Monday as per The Indian Express.

Authorities reviewed the CCTV in the area where the abduction was said to have taken place. The footage showed Khatoon herself handing over the baby to another woman.

With the help of the footage, police identified and tracked down the woman who had taken the child away. The infant was rescued just two hours after he was reported missing, India Today reported, citing police.

Khatoon and the woman were both detained for questioning, according to police.

According to sources, Khatoon sold the baby behind her husband's back. When the husband asked her about the infant's disappearance, she reportedly came up with a kidnapping story.

The woman who had taken the baby said she had paid INR 50,000 (around $670) in exchange for the child. However, Khatoon insisted that what had taken place was a case of adoption.

Police said they are investigating the matter. Meanwhile, the investigators will take action against Khatoon for falsely claiming that the child was kidnapped. 

The infant's father works as a rag picker and the couple lives under extreme poverty. Their financial situation forced the mother to sell their child, police added.

baby-1681181_640 Representational image Photo: pixabay

Last month, a woman from the southern Indian state of Telangana reportedly sold her newborn baby to a childless couple for $1,300. The child's mother was separated from her husband and had financial issues. However, the childless couple claimed they had been misled by the child's biological mother and were unaware of adoption laws in the country.