A 39-year-old man man who went missing on October 31 was on Saturday rescued from his kidnappers who had confined him to a flat in Nallasopara and demanded a ransom of Rs 82 lakh from his family, police said. Bhavin Shah, a businessman, had left his Andheri home on October 31 telling his wife he would return in an hour but when he did not come back till 9.30 pm and his cellphone was found switched off, his wife filed a police complaint.
Police said that on November 1, Shah’s wife received a call from Shah’s number in which an unidentified man told her in Marathi that two videos had been sent to her through WhatsApp.
Paramjit Singh Dahiya, Deputy Commissioner of Police, Zone IX, said that in the videos, Shah, who appeared to be in pain, told his wife that he would be released only if she paid the kidnappers Rs 82 lakh. According to the police, Shah, who spoke in Gujarati in the videos, urged his family to meet the kidnappers’ demand, or else they would kill him. The police said the kidnappers made Shah’s wife run around the crowded railway station with the ransom amount and made her board and alight from several local trains, in a bid to throw any policemen following her off her trail.
Dahiya added that meanwhile, a team of officers from Amboli police station traced Shah’s phone location to an apartment in Nallasopara, raided it on Saturday, rescued Shah and arrested three men. Two more were arrested later.
The accused were identified as Mohammad Shanu Rafique Shaikh (36), Sandeep Sharma (38), Chandrabhan Singh alias Udham (32), Anil Pandey (33), Dhiraj Singh (25) and Mohammad Kabadi (32). The police said Shaikh, who earlier had business dealings with Shah’s brother, had hatched the plan to kidnap Shah and recruited the other men to help him. He added that a countrymade pistol, bullets, knives and rope were recovered from the flat. The men have been arrested and produced in a court, which remanded them in police custody until November 13.