2 minors rescued and 7 arrested from a spa in Bhopal, MP
At noon on August 7, 2023, we met with the Additional Commissioner of Police in
Bhopal, MP, and presented him with evidence about a minor who was being sexually exploited at a spa in Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh. For three days, the victim was not at the spa. The police were ready to go on a raid at a moment’s notice. We discussed rescue strategies and waited until we could confirm that the victim was back at the spa.
On August 10, she reappeared. At 5 p.m. the police and our team raided the spa. The 15-year-old victim and another 17-year-old were rescued. The police arrested 7 people; the owner of the spa, a male in his 30s, a male staff member who distributed condoms, four female therapists, and the manager— a female in her 30s.
It took more than 6 hours for the evidence to be bagged and reports to be filed. At the police station, 15-year-old Tabasum and 17-year-old Neeva shared their details and the police filed reports against the seven accused.
On August 12, the victims were brought to the police station to record a video of their statements. They then consented to take their medical tests.
Tabasum and Neeva’s mothers came to the police station. They wanted to take their daughters home. The police asked both mothers to bring the victims to record their 164 statements the next day. Tabasum’s mother asked the police to stop the investigation since her daughter had lied about her age. Neeva was ready to talk to us when a police inspector asked to speak to her privately. As soon as she finished speaking to him, she changed all her statements. He also did not accept her birth certificate as proof of her age. The inspector also failed to arrest one of the main suspects— the brothel owner. On August 13, the spa was reopened. We will be investigating this further and will do everything in our power to strengthen the case and bring the perpetrators to justice.