Mumbai: A court here on Wednesday (July 31) granted bail to a retired police inspector and another man who were arrested earlier this month for allegedly forcing three rescued girls back into prostitution.

According to the prosecution, Inspector Qalandar Shaikh had in 2004 rescued three girls, aged between 13 to 16, from a brothel in Kamathipura area here.

But instead of sending them to a shelter home, he forced them back into flesh trade in collusion with Ravindra Pandey, it was alleged.

After an inquiry which dragged on for 15 years, the two were arrested earlier this month.

Seeking bail, Shaikh's counsel Wahab Khan claimed there was no evidence against the retired police officer who was made a "scapegoat" due to rivalry within the police department.

Additional Sessions Judge M A Baraliya granted them bail on a surety bond of Rs 25,000 each.