Two persons, including a woman,
have been awarded ten years' rigorous imprisonment by a Thane court in Maharashtra for trafficking minor girls and pushing them into flesh trade.
District Judge P P Jadhav last Saturday pronounced the punishment to Shivnath Pal Yadav (52), an autorickshaw driver, and Rajani Thakur Karnawat (37), who worked as a sweeper, and also imposed a fine of Rs 1 lakh each on them.
The prosecution told the court that based on a complaint by an NGO, the CBI officials raided a hotel in Thane city on April 25, 2007 and rescued three minor girls, aged between 12 and 15 years, from there.
The girls were brought from Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan and "sold" to customers for Rs 60,000 each, the prosecution said.
The raiding party also arrested the two accused, both belonging to Mumbai, from there.
They were booked under IPC Sections 366 (kidnapping or inducing woman to compel her for marriage), 366A (procuration of minor girl), 372 (selling minor for purposes of prostitution) and 120B (criminal conspiracy), and the Immoral Traffic (Prevention) Act.
Two more alleged associates of the accused were also arrested later on and a supplementary charge sheet was filed against them.
After hearing both the sides, the judge said the prosecution proved beyond reasonable doubt that Yadav and Karnawat hatched a conspiracy to procure minor girls for prostitution and earned money from the business.
He pronounced them guilty while acquitting the other two accused for lack of sufficient evidence against them.
(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)