Police are in the process of uncovering a huge human trafficking racket – 6 people (one Indian national and five Nepalis) have been arrested in connection to duping people from social media with promises of sending them to Australia. The police were made aware of the situation after five people were rescued from Indonesia.
According to one of the victim, a 22 year old woman aspiring to migrate to Australia reached on a Facebook page ‘Journey to Australia’. In that page she enquired how she should begin her migration process – a particular person reached to her and said ‘he is living in Australia and has connections with the Australian Immigration. She believed him, paid him an estimated 15 lakhs as ‘processing fees’ and began her journey to Australia.
As per the itinerary, she was supposed to reach Indonesia from where she would be sent to Australia. Once arriving in Indonesia, she met up with a few others fellow aspirants – a few Nepalis and a few Indians awaited their onward journey.
Soon, the victims realised they were duped – food was in constant shortage, they were held captive and at times physically assaulted. The matter came into the attention of the Indonesian authorities, and a process to repatriate the victims began.
Once home, police recorded the case and initiated an investigation. They have made six arrests in connection to the case – Parshotam Lal (30, resident of Punjab, India), Sashi Kumar Tamang (30, resident of Dolakha), Dolendra Karki (30, Myagdi), Shiv Sharma (27, Parbat), Asmira Chaulagain (22, Kavre), and Arjun Karki (28, Kavre). All arrests were made in Kathmandu, and the arrested have been charged with human trafficking. According to the police, they were charging up to 30 lakhs per victim.