In the fourth such case this month, an autorickshaw driver was arrested in Kandivali on Saturday for allegedly kidnapping and molesting a 30-year-old woman. Among similar incidents recorded this month is the case of an autorickshaw driver, who allegedly kidnapped a five-year-old girl in Sahar and raped and dumped her at Aarey Milk Colony. Similarly, while a complaint was registered against another driver after he unzipped his pants in front of a woman passenger in Versova, in another incident, two girls jumped out of a moving autorickshaw in Thane after the driver allegedly kept staring at them and passed indecent remarks.
The latest incident took place in Charkop on Wednesday night, when an autorickshaw driver allegedly kidnapped a Kandivali resident on the pretext of ferrying her home and molested her inside the vehicle.
The driver, identified as Shravankumar Upadhyay (30), was arrested on Saturday morning after the police traced his cellphone location. The police said that on Thursday, the woman registered a complaint against Upadhyay, who regularly dropped her home from Malad after she finished attending her classes.
According to an officer at Charkop police station, the woman, who also works at a private firm, often took a rickshaw from the stand outside Malad railway station to her home.
The officer said Upadhyay would wait for her at Malad railway station and ferry her home. The woman had exchanged phone numbers with the driver as she often returned late from work and needed a rickshaw home, the police said.
At 10.30 pm on March 4, instead of taking the woman to her residence, Upadhyay allegedly drove her to Malad Link Road and stopped the vehicle. The police said he then allegedly caught hold of her and asked her why she never spoke to him over the phone in spite of exchanging phone numbers. The woman hit the man with her purse and got off from the rickshaw and ran towards her house, the police said. Upadhyay did not follow her.
On Thursday, the woman approached the Charkop police and registered a complaint against him. “We have registered a complaint and were on the lookout for the rickshaw driver since Thursday. Since it was Holi, we could not get the man’s mobile phone location on Friday. However, on Saturday, we traced him and arrested him,” said an officer from the Charkop police station.