Children held captive for money; released by NGO

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Nashik, Mar 13 (UNI) Three children of a farmer, who were allegedly held captive for money at Saikheda in Niphad taluka of the district, were released by ''Janeev'' - a social organisation here.

The children -- Samadhan (11), Komal (6) and Sheetal (4) -- were released yesterday.

Kondaji Mali, a resident of Aurangpur village in Niphad taluka of the district, had taken a loan of Rs 10,000 from a person in Saikheda village for purchasing household goods. Mali along with his wife was working as a farm labourer with the money lender. But after sometime, Mali could not work in the farm as he met with an accident and was also unable to repay the loan. Following this, the money lender allegedly kept three of Mali's children captive.

Mali registered a complaint with ''Janeev''. He also mentioned that his complaint with the Niphad Police on February 1 could do nothing and after getting threats from the concerned persons, he came to the organisation for help.

On receiving the complaint, Janeev President Neeta Kothekar and others had submitted a memorandum on Tuesday with the concerned police station, regarding the release of the children.

Ms Kothekar and other activists of ''Janeev'' held discussions with police and the two persons, accused of holding the children captive, at Saikheda yesterday. They were made aware of the threat of suicide by the parents of the children in case they would not get their children back.

The activists took custody of the children in presence of the police and handed them to the Remand Home authorities.

Meanwhile, Sunil (16), elder son of the Mali couple was also working with another person for money taken for his sister's marriage. He was also released by the organisation and handed over to the Remand Home authorities, here.

No case has been registered in the matter as the matter was solved after discussion.

''Our preference was to release the children, therefore we did not force for cases or action against those responsible,'' Ms Kothekar told UNI today.

''The persons, who allegedly held the children captive, told us that the parents themselves left the children with them. In case of Sunil, he was working with the man for four years and his father used to take the money from the farm owner,'' Ms Kothekar added.

UNI GB NM RL DS1515

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