A man in India has been arrested for allegedly stealing his wife's kidney without her knowledge.
Rita Sarkar of West Bengal began suffering from abdominal pain two years ago and when she told her husband of 12 years, Biswajit Sarkar, about her discomfort, he took her to a medical facility in Kolkata.
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The 28-year-old was told by staff that she needed an immediate appendectomy and she underwent surgery the next day. However in the following months her pain returned, this time in her lower back.
Ms Sarkar told The Hindustan Times that her husband ignored her pleas to be taken to a doctor, and that he warned her not to tell anyone about the appendectomy.
When she was finally taken to hospital by her own relatives some three months ago, doctors made a horrifying discovery - her right kidney was missing.
Ms Sarkar realised that her kidney had been removed along with her appendix when she underwent surgery, and that her husband had organised the theft of one of her organs without her knowledge.
"I then understood why my husband implored me to keep quiet about the surgery," she told The Hindustan Times.
"He sold my kidney because my family couldn't meet his demand for dowry."
Ms Sarkar said her husband's family "tortured" her for years after they were married because her parents were unable to pay them the 2 lakh (NZ$4293) the family demanded as dowry.
She filed a complaint against Mr Sarkar, his brother and his mother, who were all allegedly involved in the scheme. Her husband and brother-in-law were arrested on Monday (local time) while her mother-in-law remains at large.
While in police custody Mr Sarkar allegedly confessed that his wife's kidney had been sold to a businessman in Chhattisgarh, central India.