Twenty-seven-year-old Mohammad Kalam of Turkman Gate area was leading a somewhat comfortable life for the past several months. His 'income' was steady and there wasn't much he thought he needed to worry about. But the turn of events on July 23 completely changed his life.
Kalam, a jobless man, was arrested after a three-day search by the Delhi police. His crime: targeting children between age 5 and 12 and snatching their money.
Police said on an average, Kalam used to threaten and rob 2-3 children daily. He especially targeted children as he knew they were easy to scare and their parents would probably think the child spent the money on sweets and were lying about being robbed.
Police said the accused used to operate in areas such as Turkman Gate, Hauz Qazi, Kamla Market, Jama Masjid and Chandni Mahal in the Walled City. He even used to beat children who resisted his robbery attempt.
On July 23, he stopped 12-year-old Mohammad Salim and tried to snatch the R100 note from him. The boy's family had sent him to buy something from the market and the accused had stopped him near Chandni Mahal.
"Kalam stopped Salim and asked him to give him the money. Kalam tried to scare him (Salim) by saying that he will be caught by ghosts. When the trick didn't work, Kalam took out a surgical blade from his pocket, cut Salim's face and snatched the money. The boy informed his parents and they brought him to the Chandni Mahal police station," a senior police officer said.
Acknowledging the seriousness of the crime, a team of Chandni Mahal police immediately launched a manhunt and arrested Kalam after three days.