Melbourne, Aug 22 : In a startling revelation made by Time magazine, poor children are first kidnapped from Chennai, in southern India, sold out to an adoption agency "Malaysian Social Services" for an amount as low as Rs 10,000-12000, and the agency finally sends them out to Australia to be "adopted" by different families.
More than a dozen "pretty" children kidnapped in Indian slums have ended up being adopted in Australia, the Magazine reported, and quoted the Indian Police as saying that at least 13 kidnapped children were adopted by Australian families in recent months.
According to the magazine, at least 120 children were kidnapped from slums in southern India and were sold to a Chennai-based adoption agency Malaysian Social Services (MSS) for as little as 280 dollars (Rs 11,000, before being sent overseas.
The magazine quoted Indian Police as saying that after MSS brought the children from kidnappers, new identities were created before the children were distributed overseas.
Citing a case, the magazine reported that a mother had wanted her child to go up for adoption because of "the social stigma of the child being born outside marriage".
Another Indian mother named Fatima said that her two-year-old daughter Zabeen was plucked off the street, thrown into a motorised rickshaw and disappeared. "I thought someone had taken her for her kidney," Fatima said.
Seven years after Zabeen vanished, it was discovered that she had been processed by MSS and police in India now say that she was adopted by a family in Queensland.
Reacting to the revelation, Queenslandd Child Safety Minister Margaret Keech reportedly said that the allegations were "very concerning". "Officials will work very closely with federal and state agencies to investigate these claims," Keech said.