Kidney Kingpin To Lose Canadian Residence Status

Kidney kingpin to lose Canadian residence status

Wednesday, 06 February, 2008

Brampton: Amit Kumar, the brain behind the multi-million-dollar kidney scam, will lose his permanent resident status in Canada once he is convicted of organ trafficking.

“Canadian law is very specific about that. Once you are convicted of human organ trafficking, or any serious crime, you are out,” Sheetal Jhuti, immigration director of Mississauga-based ICAN Inc, told IANS.

She said Kumar, nicknamed 'Dr Horror', will lose his Canadian status even if the crime has been committed outside Canada.

He might also come under the scanner for his financial transfers to Canada, she added.

However, there are no clues about `Dr Horror' being in Canada. His Pali Drive residence in the Toronto suburb of Brampton, where his wife and two young sons live, looked empty on Tuesday.

No one answered the doorbell, and residents were tightlipped about their infamous neighbours. Phone calls met with this response on the answering machine: At the customer's request, the service has been temporarily cancelled.'

The Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP), meanwhile, said it continues to work with the Indian authorities in the case.

“We are in communication with Indian authorities on this issue and Interpol-Ottawa is extending them all assistance,” said RCMP officer Sylvie Tremblay said on the phone from Ottawa.

At this stage, she said, it was an Indian investigation and various Canadian law enforcement agencies were involved in assisting them.

Refusing to speculate whether Kumar could be in Canada, she said Interpol-Ottawa was working on the red alert issued by Interpol-New Delhi.

Former Canadian Health Minister Ujjal Dosanjh said, “It is absolutely tragic to allow people to run trade in human organs. Buying and selling of human organs is inhumane and unethical,” he said.

He said he had warned Indians about this issue in the mid-1990s when a case of an Indo-Canadian man getting kidney transplant in India came to light.

“When I visited there, I told the Indians to put an end to it. But the scam shows it continues to this day,” Dosanjh said.

He said there was no trade in human organs in Canada per se, but people from all over the world went to India to have organ transplants.

“It is trafficking in human organs, it is an uneven business where the rich take advantage of someone's poverty,” he said.

With two million people suffering from kidney problems, Canada faces an acute shortage of organs as there are just 13.5 donors per million. Patients wait from two to 10 long years for transplants.

The long waiting periods aside, a kidney transplant entails a minimum cost of $50,000, compared to just a few thousands Dr Kumar charged.

But despite long waiting periods, no one can justify the selling and buying of human organs, said a spokeswoman for the Kidney Foundation of Canada.

“We don't make judgments against those individuals who go abroad for transplants, or what is going on there (in India), but the outcome is not good for the donors and recipients,” she added.


Full coverage: Gurgaon kidney racket