After 5 months,‘missing’ boy returns homehttps://indianexpress.com/article/cities/ahmedabad/after-5-months-missing-boy-returns-home/

After 5 months,‘missing’ boy returns home

A 17-year-old city boy,who had gone missing,returned home almost after five months from Kharagpur in West Bengal on Saturday,police said.

A 17-year-old city boy,who had gone missing,returned home almost after five months from Kharagpur in West Bengal on Saturday,police said.

The boy,Karthik Rajendran,had walked away from home on January 27 as he failed in his test exams in Class XI Science. He was also preparing entrance tests for the Indian Institute of Technology but got demotivated after he failed his exams.

A couple of days ago,Karthik’s father K Rajendran,a software engineer,received a call from one Raju Yadav of Kharagpur stating that his son was working with him from last five months.

Karthik reportedly had gone to Ahmedabad railway station from school to go to his grand father’s house in his native place. However,he changed his mind later thinking his parents might catch him there. Then,he took a local train to neighbouring Surendranagar district.

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His father,who is still shocked about the whole incident,said,“The boy’s journey to various places began from Surendranagar. He boarded a Jammu&Kashmir-bound train and then got down at an unknown station. From there,he boarded another train that was coming from opposite direction thinking it was going towards Gujarat,but it was a Delhi-bound train. He went to Allahabad and then to Kharagpur where he spent five months.”

According to the boy,he met a man in the train who offered him a job and promised to pay Rs 200 per day. Karthik agreed and went to Allahbad with him.

The boy’s father said,“He stayed 20 days in Allahbad and that person asked him to go with him to Kharagpur. He claimed that was his native place and he would help him to get a better paying job there. Karthik went with him in a train to Kharagpur probably in February mid. However,he left my boy stranded at Kharagpur train station promising to return back to pick him but never came back.”

Karthik waited for more than 15 hours at the railway station. He reportedly made friends with a book stall owner who offered him a job at his friend’s sweets shop. Raju Yadav,who used to do clerical work at the same shop,became friends with him and began finding out more about his past.

According to Rajendran,Yadav extracted everything out from Karthik and felt sympathy for his family. He took Rajendran’s number from him and called him with a condition that he wouldn’t make Karthik talk to him or send his photo for a proof otherwise the boy may run away.

Rajendran,however,did not believe him initially. He said,“I told Yadav I will send a relative from Kolkata,but I went there changing my name. First,I ensured Yadav and his men had not kidnapped Karthik. He told me the whole story and showed his photograph working at sweet shop. I went with him to the shop to meet my son.”

Karthik,who wanted to stay out of Ahmedabad for three-four days fearing his parents anger,ended up working for nominal money at strange places.

The Detection of Crime Branch that is probing the case has recorded Rajendran and Karthik’s statements.