4-year-old girl rescued from Chhattisgarh, couple held

Suspects traced after they made a ransom call for Rs 2 lakh, say cops

Pune | Published: March 2, 2014 2:50:52 am
The couple in police custody. Rajesh Stephen The couple in police custody. Rajesh Stephen

Police have rescued a four-year-old girl who was kidnapped from her home in Dehu Road for ransom on February 23 and had been taken to Chhattisgarh. A couple who stayed near the girl’s house and were known to her parents has been arrested in this connection.

The accused are Udayram Guhiram Banjari (29) and his wife Puja who had been staying in Dehu Road area for the last four years after changing their surname to Khatkar. Banjari is from Bhilai in Chhattisgarh.

“Uday worked in a factory that makes cement blocks. It has come to light after the interrogation of the couple that they first hatched a plan to kidnap the girl and then got acquainted with her family. They started taking the girl out with them to play or for a walk. Before kidnapping her, they sold off all their belongings here.
On the evening of February 23, they took the girl along with them saying they were taking her to Somatne. But as two did not return, the girl’s parents got worried and filed a complaint. The two had switched off their phones,” said Senior Inspector Ram Jadhav of Dehu Road police station.

A day later, the two called the parents of the girl and asked for Rs 2 lakh to be deposited in an account. They said they were in Nagpur. “(But) we got information that they had taken the girl to Bhilai in Chhattisgarh. We rescued the girl with the help of the local police on Friday,” said Jadhav.

PSI S M Shinde, constables J C Mahadik and P S Shinde were part of the investigating team.

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