A nine-year-old boy was allegedly kidnapped and strangled by his neighbour in West Delhi’s Ranhola area. The boy’s parents had filed a missing person complaint on Friday afternoon and police found the body, stuffed inside a bag, on the neighbouring building’s terrace that same night.
The neighbour, identified as Jai Kumar (23), has been arrested. Police are also probing whether the boy was sexually assaulted. They are awaiting the post-mortem report to ascertain this.
According to police, the boy, a Class III student in a government school, lived with his parents and two sisters. His father is a daily wage labourer. Kumar works at a private firm and his parents were not home for the past four days.
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Police said on Friday afternoon, the boy’s parents came to the police station to report that their son was missing. “We recorded the parents’ statements. The mother told us that on Friday, around 10 am, the boy had gone to buy groceries from a nearby general store. He came back within a few minutes and left again,” an officer said.
When the boy did not return even after a few hours, his mother called his father and told him about the incident. The father came back from the construction site and the couple began looking for their son. “After searching in vain, they approached police. On the basis of their complaint, a case was registered at Ranhola police station,” the officer said.
Police began checking houses in the neighbourhood with the help of local residents and, around midnight, police spotted a bag on one of the terraces. The body was stuffed inside.
Police began questioning residents for leads. They found out that the boy was last seen with Kumar. But Kumar denied this initially. “We detained him and began questioning him. He tried to mislead us with a cooked-up story, but on sustained questioning, he broke down and admitted to killing the boy,” the officer said.
Kumar was said to have told police that he found the boy outside his home on Friday morning and lured him inside saying he would give him Rs 5 and some goodies. “When the boy started screaming, Kumar got scared and strangled him with a piece of cloth. He stuffed the body in a bag. Kumar panicked when he saw police combing the area. So he threw the bag on the terrace,” the officer said.