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Pastor held for forcing minors into begging

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Hyderabad: A pastor was today arrested on the charge of duping minor children and forcing them into begging at traffic signals in IT Corridor here, on the pretext of providing education to them at his orphanage, police said.

Over the past few days, the accused M James, had deployed at least four children at different locations under Gachibowli Police Station limits here with a donation box and made them seek alms on the pretext of contributing money for providing education to orphans housed at an orphanage in Ameenpur area on the city outskirts, they said.

“Acting on a tip-off, police asked the children about the orphanage, who informed them about James stating that he had asked them to seek donations from motorists in the name of providing education to children at the orphanage,” Gachibowli Police Station Sub-Inspector (SI) Ch Venkatesh said.

A joint police team of Gachibowli and Ramachandrapuram police stations went to Ameenpur and found that around 20 children, all of whom were below 14 years of age, were at the orphanage run by James.

“Some of them were orphans, while others had parents, who could not afford to send their wards to school,” he said.

Gachibowli police booked James under relevant sections of the Juvenile Justice Act as well as IPC section 420 (cheating), who was subsequently arrested, the SI added.

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