The Tamil Nadu health secretary has ordered an inquiry into an audio clip in which a former government nurse purportedly claimed that she had been “selling newborns” for 30 years, PTI reported. The nurse, identified as Amuthavalli, and her husband have been detained by police, according to Hindustan Times.
Health Secretary Beela Rajesh has told the director of the Health and Rural Welfare department to look into the clip.
In the clip that went viral on social media, the woman is heard offering deals for newborn babies to a man from Dharmapuri. “I have been doing this business for 30 years,” the woman allegedly says. “By God’s grace, I have not faced any problems. Pay me as much as you can as advance, I will WhatsApp the baby’s picture to you.”
The man is heard saying that he is fine if the baby is of either sex, to which the woman elaborates on the pricing structure. “If you need a girl, then the price would be Rs 2.70 lakh,” she is heard saying. “If the baby is close to three kilos, then the price would go up to Rs 3 lakh. If you need an Amul baby [an apparent reference to a healthy and fair male baby], then the price would range from Rs 4 lakh to Rs 4.15 lakh. If the baby is darker, then the price may reduce to Rs 3.30 lakh to Rs 3.75 lakh.”
The woman in the clip is heard offering an original birth certificate as well as other forged documents.
Namakkal Superintendent of Police Ara Arularasu told The Indian Express that Amutha was part of a bigger nexus. “She doesn’t sell the babies directly to the concerned party, there are plenty of brokers involved in this business,” the police official said. “We are in the process of identifying the family who sold their baby to this woman.”