KATHMANDU, Nov 24: Police on Friday arrested the owner of an education consultancy on the charge of human trafficking. Police said she used to lure students willing to pursue their higher studies in Canada but she either sold them or left them stranded in India. The company has been operating for a year but its is not registered at the Ministry of Education.
Owner of Webster Education Networks Incorporated Private Limited, Sunita Tiwari Waiba, 37, of Bakaiya Rural Municipality-9, of Makwanpur was arrested from the company's office at Putalisadak, Kathmandu. Her husband, who, according to the police is her partner in the crime, is on the run. More than 16 people have filed complaints against the company which has been charging each student an amount ranging from Rs 700,000 to Rs 1.2 million for its services. The Waiba couple was on the run after the police started searching for them three days ago.
According to the police, a case was filed against the company on Tuesday. Police also informed that the complainants are from districts including Kathmandu, Dang and Rupandehi.
Police suspect a human trafficking racket operating in the guise of the company. “We suspect that there is an entire human trafficking racket,” said Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP) Raj Kumar Silwal, head of the CIB team investigating the case, “We also suspect that there are more students who were duped by the company.”
DSP Silwal told Republica that the company is not registered at the Ministry of Education. “The arrestee has told us that the company was opened eight years ago after being registered,” he said, “But the company started its operations from the previous fiscal year without registration.”
According to the police, Waiba's company also published advertisements in various newspapers to lure students. Based on the complaints filed as of now, police estimate that the company has collected more than Rs 10 million from the students.
CIB has been interrogating Waiba after the Kathmandu District Court where she was presented after her arrest asked the police to investigate the human trafficking allegations.