Jamshedpur: Police has rescued 24 tribal children who were allegedly trafficked from Jharkhand and arrested two people. Police on Sunday informed that rescued tribal children were trafficked from Jharkhand to an illegal shelter home in Punjab.

Superintendent of Police, West Singhbhum, G Kranthi Kumar said, “We have rescued four children who were reportedly pursuing their studies in the three-room shelter home in Ludhiana and arrested two persons, including the owner of the home.”

As the home authorities claimed that they had sent back 30 children, physical verification of 20 of them was done in West Singhbhum district, while a search is on for the remaining ten, Kumar said.

Those arrested were identified as Satyendra Prasad Moses (56), the shelter home operator in Ludhiana and a resident of Gaya district of Bihar and Junul Longo, a resident of Gudri police station in West Singhbhum, he added.

Both the accused were produced before a local court in Chaibasa on Saturday.

Reportedly, 34 children from the state were taken to a Ludhiana-based shelter home and allegedly converted to Christianity. Following a report of the special branch, a police team headed by the Officer-in-charge of Anti-Human Trafficking Unit police station, Banarasi Ram was sent to Punjab to rescue the children.

Jyotsana Tirkey, a member of Child Welfare Committee, Chaibasa had lodged a complaint on August 26 on the basis of a media report that 34 children from Jharkhand were illegally kept in the missionary-run children shelter home, where efforts were on to convert them to Christianity and engage them in child labour.

Tirkey alleged that Longo had lured the children with the false promise of education and employment.

(With PTI inputs)