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Sunday, March 21, 2010

Amit Kumar Jailed for Stealing Kidneys

Impoverished Indian labourer Mohammad Salim had one of his kidneys stolen headed up by a doctor whom the local media are calling the "kidney kingpin", Amit Kumar. An estimated 500 other poor labourers received much the same treatment. Indian authorities believe that Dr Kumar, who is now in jail awaiting trial, sold most of the kidneys to wealthy foreigners. Salim's kidney appears to have been given to a Greek woman.

Two years ago Salim was lured to Delhi from his hometown of Meerut by the promise of a job. Instead, he was taken in a "big black car" to Kumar's clinic. He was forced to give a blood sample and then sedated. When he woke up 15 hours later he had acute pain in his side and was missing a kidney.

He was threatened with death if he revealed what had happened to him. He told the media: "As I entered the building there were four men standing there with guns. They told me not to speak about anything that happened there or they would shoot me." After the surgery, another doctor told him, "We found you in your home town so we can also send a bullet there to kill you too."

Now Salim is unable to work for more than a few hours at a time. His children have all dropped out of school, and some days he doesn't make enough money to feed them. The Australian media has picked up the kidney sale scandal because Dr Kumar is believed to have invested heavily in the Australian property market. ~ The Age, Mar 13, Far Eastern Economic Review, Jan 2009

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