Suspecting that the hearing- and speech-impaired girl who went missing from a Metro station on April 21 may be trapped in a human trafficking racket, Delhi Police have transferred the case to the anti-human trafficking unit of the Crime Branch. Special Commissioner of Police M K Meena confirmed that Crime Branch has taken over the case, which was being investigated by the Kashmere Gate Metro police station so far. Sunita, 19, who was travelling with her mother and sister, got left behind in the Metro at Jahangirpuri Metro Station. Her parents said the girl had “brain fever” growing up, which impaired her mental development.
CCTV footage showed Sunita deboarding the Metro at Adarsh Nagar and exiting the station from gate number 2. She did not have a token, but some passengers at the station helped her exit, police said. Sunita’s father Ram Saran told The Indian Express that the case being transferred to the Crime Branch had given the family fresh hope. Sources said the Metro police had reached out to police from other states. “Since the girl is differently-abled, there is a possibility that she may have been picked up by a gang or a racket operating in Delhi. We have approached police in neighbouring states and shared data to get any leads,” an officer said.
The Metro Police lodged a case under IPC Section 365 (abduction) at Kashmere Gate Metro police station — but only 10 days after the incident. The girl’s family has alleged that Sunita would not have gone missing had Metro officials taken timely action. After the incident, her mother had alleged: “Had Metro officials acted on time, my daughter would not be missing. Some people took me to a complaint room. Staff members told me they have informed the other station but nothing happened for two hours. After that, they told me to go home and wait for my daughter.”
Saran, a native of Uttar Pradesh’s Unnao district who has been living in Delhi for the last 30 years, said, “I have been spending all my time around Adarsh Nagar Metro station. I have talked to many rickshaw pullers and people around the Metro station to get leads.” Taking cognizance of The Indian Express report on the incident on April 26, the High Court had asked Delhi Police what it had done to trace the missing girl.