A Lohardaga police team has been unable to locate restaurateur Anil Ahuja and wife Sharda Ahuja, employers of 16-year-old Phoolmani Nagesia. Phoolmani, who had been working for the couple as a domestic help at their residence in Kaushambi, Ghaziabad, was found hanging on June 19.
“We went to their house in Ghaziabad, but it was locked. Since they are absconding, we will initiate proceedings to seize the property,” said an official in the investigating team.
Madan Kumar Sahu, who works with NGO Sahiya, said Anil Ahuja had called Phoolmani’s uncle a day after the arrest warrant was taken out. “He has been calling her mother continuously, asking her to meet them in Delhi to talk about money. After the last call, I ensured a complaint was registered about this,” he said.
A team from Kisko police station, had earlier arrested two people from NCR. “Batti Orain alias Satya is a broker who finds these girls. Santosh Choudhary is the head of the agency which sent Phoolmani to her employer,” SP Sunil Bhaskar said. Anil Ahuja is listed as a ‘client’ in the agency’s records, police said.
Polcie said Phoolmani’s body was found hanging at 8.30 pm by members of the Ahuja household. “Police was only informed at 3 am, by which time the body had been lowered. An autopsy was conducted the next day in the absence of the girl’s legal guardian,” Rishi Kant, member of NGO Shakti Vahini, who filed the July 9 complaint with the NCPCR, said.
Police handed Phoolmani’s body to Anil Ahuja, who passed it on to Santosh, the head of the placement agency. The Ghaziabad police did not inform their counterparts in Lohardaga. IG Anurag Gupta of the Jharkhand police emailed NGO Shakti Vahini after he received a complaint from Phoolmani’s mother.
Phoolmani had been hired in July 2012 for Rs 3,000 per month.