KOLKATA: Children residing in the shelter homes of Chandana Chakraborty— prime accused in the Jalpaiguri trafficking racket—may have been drugged before being trafficked for ease of operations, officials of the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) indicated after a raid on Chandana's homes on Wednesday.
The matter came to light after high dosage anti-allergic medicines were recovered from the shelter homes during the raid led by officials of the central agency. Samples of the medicines have been seized.
The district administration put an estimated figure of 70 children being trafficked from three homes of Chandana Chakraborty in Jalpaiguri district.
The anti-allergic medicines are enough to put small children to sleep for several hours without allowing them to cry or protest during their transportation to different parts of the country.
NCPCR official Yaswant Jain told media after the raid that a report over 14 issues has been sought from the administration, based on which an investigation into the racket would be initiated by the commission.
"One thing is clear that Chandana Chakraborty's shelter homes were running illegally. Furthermore, large number of medicines has been recovered which can't be administered to children. The role of Child Welfare Committee is also under scrutiny. The report has been sought by March 10," Jain said.
The NCPCR officials also indicated they may recommend the case to be transferred to a higher agency if the state government's investigation is found to be inadequate. On the other hand, the state government has refused to share any case details with the central agency.
In a separate incident, inmates of a government-run shelter home in English Bazaar of Malda district tried to escape during a ruckus in the wee hours of Wednesday morning, alleging they were not provided enough food and clothes.
(READ HERE: Five minor girls including a Bangladeshi flee from a govt-run home in Bengal's Malda)
While six inmates were nabbed by the locals, two were injured during their attempt to escape and were admitted to the Malda Medical College.