Visakhapatnam Police have arrested a doctor and five others in a kidney racket case.
Cases under Indian Penal Code (IPC) sections 307, 326 and 420 have been registered against them. More accused are likely to be arrested.
Police said on Sunday that they have arrested Prameswara Rao, doctor of a private hospital, and middlemen Kamaraju, Srinu, Shekhar, Elina and Kondamma.
Visakhapatnam Police Commissioner Trivikram Varma told a news conference that the gang was targeting families facing financial problems.
The police chief said kidney surgeries were performed at Tirumala Hospital in the city. Police investigations revealed that recently two kidney operations were performed on Vinay Kumar and Vasupalli Srinivasa Rao.
The racket came to light two days ago after Vinay Kumar, a resident of Vambay Colony in Visakhapatnam, approached police complaining that an agent lured him to sell one of his kidneys. The agent promised that this could fetch him Rs 8.5 lakh but after removing his kidney at a private hospital, he was paid only Rs 2.5 lakh on December 16, 2022.
The police focused on the involvement of doctors in the racket. Two doctors were found to have played a key role in kidney surgery.
Narla Venkateshwar Rao is alleged to have played an important role. He was arrested and jailed in the past for a kidney racket.
Taking serious note of the illegal kidney transplants, Vizag district administration on Saturday sealed Tirumala Hospital.
The authorities have registered criminal cases against the hospital, which was operating without the requisite permissions.
Health Minister Vidadala Rajini has said that the government has stepped up the vigil in view of the rise in cases of illegal kidney transplants.
She said investigations have been ordered into the kidney racket which was being operated by Tirumala Hospital located at Pendurthi.
The health minister has promised that no one involved in this racket will be spared. She said a state-level committee would be constituted to recommend measures to prevent such incidents. (PB/NewsGram)