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'When I woke up, they told me my kidney was gone'
January 30, 2008 15:41 IST
Last Updated: January 30, 2008 16:12 IST
The bait was a job offer promising Rs 150 per day. It came with another clause - the employee first had to get a 'physical check-up' done at a Gurgaon hospital.
For many like construction worker Sakil, it sounded like a good opportunity. They soon learnt that it was a mistake, as they were lured into the multi-crore kidney racket through the job offer.
In the last ten years, the multi-crore scam involving absconding 'Dr Horror' Amit alias Santosh Raut has resulted in at least 500 illegal transplants.
Sakil, Salim and Nasim have many things in common. They are all poor, semi-skilled labourers who have lost their kidney to Dr Horror. Lying in Civil Hospital, Gurgaon, they share their real-life horror stories.
When Sakil was taken to a house-cum-hospital in Gurgaon on the night of January 23, he found at least three persons lying on the bed, refusing to talk, something he too was told to follow by the two masked men 'looking after the patients'.
The next morning Sakil woke up with a pain in the stomach. He was told by the 'doctors' that his kidney has been removed.
Two days later, as Sakil rested on the bed speechless, an Uttar Pradesh police team trooped in looking for suspects in the massive kidney racket. The police found that along with Sakil, Salim and Nasim too had lost their kidneys to Dr Horror and his cronies.
The police rescued two youths, Ajay Kumar and Sanjay Kumar, both residents of Meerut, who were waiting for their 'check-up'.
Sakil says he can't forget the two men who had met him on January 16, the day when it all began.
He was waiting for an odd job near the old Delhi railway station in the afternoon when a middle-aged man with a beard and a youth offered him the job of a whitewasher. He was promised Rs 150 per day for a period of two-and-a-half months.
"I was introduced to a contractor at India Gate who drove an Esteem car. He said he will provide me a job," Sakil said. "The two of them then disappeared, leaving me with the contractor in the car late in the evening that day," recalls Sakil.
As the car moved fast, he was asked whether he had some disease. "When I told him I had none, he insisted on a check-up and took my blood sample in the car itself. He told me that I was OK," said Sakil.
For the next couple of days, Sakil was kept in a house, "most probably near Ballabhgarh, Faridabad along with four others".
On the night of January 21, the Esteem car driver took him away in his car. "After about two hours, we reached a petrol pump, where I was told to get into a black Santro car. Within minutes, we reached a house and the car driver knocked at the gate in a particular style," recalls Sakil.
Later, two men wielding guns took him to a separate room, which had a lot of medical equipment. Sakil said, "I was made to lie on a stretcher, despite my objections, but they told me not to worry as this was part of a medical check-up. Two persons, who had covered their faces with green masks, gave me an injection and I lost consciousness."
"When I regained consciousness, after around three hours, I felt a pain in my stomach and enquired about it. The men told me that my kidney has been removed and that I would be paid as promised," Sakil said.
Salim, 35, also has a similar story -- the same bearded man, the same Esteem and Santro cars and the same Gurgaon 'hospital'. A resident of Sahapeer Gate, Sahakasa Bazaar, Meerut, Salim works as a labourer. He is married and has five children.
Sakil's father Abdulla Fakir, who works as a tailor, laments that his son has lost his kidney but not even received a paisa in return. "The government should provide us some monetary compensation and a job," says Fakir, while Sakil' mother angrily demands punishment for all guilty persons.