A 65-year-old astrologer was rescued by the city police on Wednesday. The police have arrested a Gurgaon resident, Surender, who allegedly masterminded the abduction, along with two of his accomplices, Kailash and Prahlad, both residents of Rajasthan.
“Kailash and Prahlad abducted astrologer Leeladhar on February 7 while he was on his way to Gurgaon and had put forth a demand of Rs. 7 lakh for his release,” said Surender Singh Yadav, deputy commissioner of police (north).
“During interrogation, we came to know that three years ago, Leeladhar along with his friends Jagdish Prasad, Kirori and Kamal had preyed upon Surender’s superstitions and made him donate a golden cow weighing 31 tolas, saying it would bring good fortune to him and his family,” said a senior police officer.
Surender also gave money to the three and then went to Haridwar to do what Leeladhar, who is a palmist and sits opposite the Civil Hospital in Gurgaon, had asked him to.
“Despite this, he suffered huge losses in his business and then demanded a repayment from Leeladhar. When he expressed his inability to pay him back, Surender hatched a conspiracy,” the police officer said.
The police said that Surender sent his wife to lure Leeladhar into Manesar. “After reaching there, Surender demanded for R7.8 lakh from the astrologer and also made demanded a ransom of R7 lakh from his son," said the officer.
The police caught Surender near the Sohna Chowk, where the ransom money was to exchange hands.