A call from an unknown number created panic across Mumbai on Tuesday and sent police on a three-hour-long hunt for the caller, a senior citizen, who police later learnt had dialled a “wrong number”.
According to police, Sarvesh Kumar, a resident of Juhu, was watching television news about a man being caught by the Sahar police for allegedly calling Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj International Airport to give terror threats.
“While he was watching the news, around 12 noon on Tuesday, he got a call from an unknown caller who, without identifying himself, said ‘sab tayaar hai na. main aa raha hu 17 tareek ko. Yusuf ko mil liya? shak tho nahi hua?’, after which the call was disconnected,” an officer from Juhu police station said.
As Kumar got suspicious about the caller, he dialled the police control room, following which the crime branch and the Anti-Terrorism Squad were informed and barricades erected at various points in the city.
Senior police inspector Ajitkumar Dattatraya Vartak of the Juhu station said, “We recorded Kumar’s statement in detail, subsequently traced the caller by 3pm on the same day and asked him to come to the police station.”
Without revealing his name, Vartak said the caller is a businessman. “We came to know that the caller wanted to call someone in Bhopal. But by mistake he dialled Kumar, who stays in a building next to the ISKCON temple in Juhu and as soon as the caller learnt that he had dialled a wrong number, he disconnected the call.”
The officer said the caller was going to Bhopal for some work and wanted to call one of his acquaintances for that purpose. “We have verified his ticket to Bhopal also. We have also spoken to the person he wanted to call. There is no terror angle to it,” said Vartak.
Police have not registered any case but recorded the incident in their station house dairy. “We recorded the caller’s statement and allowed him to go,” said a police officer.