Odisha police rescues 20 labourers from Nagpur, trafficker arrested

Bhubaneswar: The Odisha police on Wednesday rescued 19 labourers from Balangir district who were being trafficked to a brick kiln in Telangana. The alleged trafficker identified as Ricksha Muduli has been arrested in this connection.

With this, the number of labour traffickers arrested this month reaches 92.

The victims, accompanied by a team of Odisha police today reached Balangir and lodged a case against the trafficker at Lathor police station of the district. Those rescued include 9 males, 7 females and 3 children – all hailing from Harishankarpur area of the district.

Earlier on Tuesday, acting on a tip-off, the DIG of Police (Northern Range), Himanshu Kumar Lal coordinated with the GRP in Maharashtra to arrest Muduli at Nagpur railway station where he along with the labourers were waiting to board a different train to Telangana.

As per the information, the victims had borrowed a sum of Rs 10,000 each from Muduli ahead of Dusshera and had agreed to accompany him to the worksite after the festival. However, the labourers soon discovered that the particular worksite at Telengana they had signed up for, was notorious for illtreating labourers. Scared, they decided to return the borrowed amount of Rs 10,000 to Muduli but he refused.

“He told us that he would let us go only if we return him 30,000 each and no less,” said one of the victims on condition of anonymity.

On Monday night, few men asked them to gather at one place in Harishanakrpur and later locked them up lest they should escape. Early the next morning, the victims were made to board a train to Nagpur from where they intended to board a different train to Telangana. It was at Nagpur that the raid was conducted, and the victims rescued.

Earlier on October 13 and October 13, the state police had arrested 41 and 50 labour traffickers respectively in an extensive crackdown carried out in the districts of Balangir, Nuapada and Kalahandi.

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