He slept on trees, ate leaves to survive for 10 days in Costa Rican forests

Youth from Punjab, being pushed illegally into the US, was abandoned in a thick forest. But he lived to recall the ordeal

Ludhiana: A travel agent took Rs 17 lakh from a youth on the promise that he would get him entry into the United States but abandoned him in the forests of Costa Rica. The victim, Nanak, a resident of New Shakti Nagar at Basti Jodhewal in Ludhiana, spent 10 days in the forest. He slept on trees in the night and survived by eating leaves. Nanak was in a serious condition when rescued.


Good Samaritan

A white man found him in an unconscious state. He informed Nanak’s family in India and also got him hospitalised.

The family members complained to the Human Trafficking Unit of the state police. Nanak returned home after 103 days. The ordeal he underwent has affected Nanak mentally. Police have booked Nanak’s neighbour Sumit Chopra, travel agent Sat Pal, Ashish Pal and Dharmesh Mehta, resident of Harnam Nagar, for conspiracy and fraud.


Insect bit me in the forest and I was left behind…

I reached Ecuador from Delhi, where a youth named Sam sent me to Brazil. In Brazil, I met two persons and boarded a bus with them. We covered some distance on the bus and finally met some 80-90 people. The two people accompanying us took our passports and said they would be returned to us later. They asked us to move along a canal and said we would reach a city after 3-4 days and then we would be able to cross into the US. I moved with the group along the canal. However some insect bit me on the back. I couldn’t keep pace with the group due to the pain and was left behind. The group moved on leaving me alone in the forest. It was a scary experience. I survived by eating tree leaves and grass and slept on trees in the night. After several days I reached a city but fell unconscious. On regaining consciousness, a white man called my family in India and I talked to them over phone. The Good Samaritan also prepared my video and sent it to my family. Meanwhile, the hospital bill kept on mounting. After about three months I learned that my family had sent me air ticket and the staff of Panama Embassy sent me back to India on a White Passport. (As told by Nanak)

Demanded Rs 25 lakh, took 15 lakh in advance

Inspector Surender Kumar said Nanak’s neighbour Sumit told Nanak’s father that his younger brother lives in America and he would get Nanak settled there. Sumit introduced Nanak to a Chandigarh agent Sat Pal. He said Nanak would be sent to America on work permit and demanded Rs 25 lakh for the same.

The agent agreed to take Rs 15 lakh in advance and Rs 10 lakh after Nanak reaches USA. The agent said Nanak would first be sent to Ecuador and from there to America.

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