The world of Colonel Rameshwar Naik (retd) came crashing down when he received a phone call from his son’s unit, 10 Sikh Light Infantry in Bhatinda that he had not reported for duty after his leave got over on April 6.
Lieutenant Abhishek Naik, 25, went missing from the New Delhi railway station while he was enroute to his battalion in Bhatinda after spending 20 days with his family in Mumbai. The army has ruled out the desertion angle and suspects foul play in his disappearance. Naik junior worked at JP Morgan before joining the Officers’ Training Academy, Chennai, to pursue a career in the army.
Colonel Naik has been doing the rounds of the railway station in the hope of finding some clues.
Colonel Naik, who works at Reliance, said, “There’s no question of desertion as he joined the army at his own will. He was quite relaxed. He was a short service officer and could have quit after five years.” Closed-circuit camera footage at the railway station shows that Abhishek had deposited his luggage at the cloakroom.
A senior officer at the army headquarters said, “We spoke to his commanding officer. He said Abhishek was doing well. He even called his parents on the morning of April 6 to inform them that he had reached Delhi safely. We suspect foul play.”
Colonel Naik said, “He is a loving son. We all went to Shirdi together and prayed for his happiness. Please pray for my son. He means the world to us,” said Naik trying hard to hold back tears.