The survivors and the accused hailed from Assam and they have been brought back to the state, special director general of police GP Singh said.
“The women and the accused persons were taken into custody from two hotels that functioned under Thampanoor and Medical College police station limits in Kerala. The gang’s modus operandi was to trap the women by false promise of jobs and marriage. They are then taken to Kerala to engage them for prostitution,” Hojai SP Barun Purkayastha told TOI.
Assam police had been investigating the matter after registering a suo-motu a case following a tip-off to track down the gang members and arrest them. “Tracing the mobile phone signals of two of the gang members, an Assam Police team went to Thampanoor. The arrests were made with the assistance of Kerala Police after the Assam team met city police commissioner IG Balram Kumar Upadhyay and sought his help,” a source said.
“An information was received by @Hojai_Police about an illegal human trafficking racket operating from Assam, in which several girls belonging to various districts in Assam have been trafficked to Thampanoor, Kerala,” Singh tweeted.
Based on specific inputs, a case was registered at Lanka police station in Hojai district on July 11 under several sections of the IPC and a team of eight police personnel left for Kerala on July 13 to rescue the victims and apprehend the accused, he said.
The girls hail from Hojai, Nagaon, Sonitpur, Morigaon and Kamrup Rural districts, while the accused are from Hojai and Nagaon, Singh added.