Hyderabad, Sep 20

A huge Arab marriage racket, involving minor girls, has been busted here with the arrest of eight Omani and Qatari nationals and three qazis, police said on Wednesday.

The arrested qazis include the chief qazi of Mumbai Farid Ahmed Khan. Four lodge owners and five brokers of Hyderabad have also been held.

City Police Commissioner M. Mahender Reddy told reporters that the Arab sheikhs were marrying minor girls with the help of brokers, qazis and lodge owners. Of the sheikhs arrested, five are Omani nationals and three Qatari.

The racket, which was spreading from Hyderabad to Oman and other Arab countries, was busted during the investigation into a case registered last month in Falaknuma area of the old city of Hyderabad.

A woman had complained to the police that her husband with the help of some brokers 'sold' their minor daughter to a 70-year-old Omani national Ahmed Abdullah. The girl is stuck in Oman.

The police chief said efforts were on to rescue the girl and arrest the accused and bring them to Hyderabad.

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