Single mother living in Indian slum sells newborn for $220, unable to afford another child

Published: June 6, 2014

A 32-year-old single mother in India living in poverty sold her newborn son for less than $220. File photo:FREDERIC J. BROWN/AFP/Getty Images


A 32-year-old single mother in India living in poverty sold her newborn son for less than $220 because she couldn’t afford to raise him, according to Britain’s Daily Mail.

Gauri Shah, a mother of four, lives in the slums of West Bengal. She already has three daughters between the ages of three and eight-years-old and when she found out she was pregnant with her fourth child her husband abandoned her, the British tabloid reported.

Shah gave birth to the baby boy on May 25, but with her only income coming form her 70-year-old mother who begs for money on the streets, the single mother had no idea how she could afford to raise the newborn alone, so she sold him to a childless couple.

According to the Daily Mail, neighbours raised the alarm and rescued the days-old baby, but Shah refused to take him back.

“My husband left me eight months ago with three daughters. We depend on whatever money my mother manages to collect. She had to borrow Rs 100 ($2) from our neighbour for my delivery. I have no money to raise my children, how will I take care of another?” Shah said. “After I was discharged from the hospital, a childless couple approached me and asked me to give them my son for Rs13000. I accepted the offer, as I had no other option. I thought my son would live a better life with them.”

The local government has since taken in the baby boy and he is being cared for at a children’s home, the Daily Mail reported.

Shah said she would only take her son back if the government offered to help her with money.


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