Like all officegoers, Hari Prakash starts his day early. He leaves home at 9 am with lunch packed by his wife. Just that he doesn’t go to work.
Prakash, a mechanic, has a herculean task. To find his teenage son Kamal Azad who has not returned home since January 28. Azad had gone to play cricket in a park near their home in Kapashera in southwest Delhi. Azad is one of the 100 children who went missing in January this year.
Police commissioner YS Dadwal met all his senior officers on Tuesday to discuss missing children in the Capital. Police said the most vulnerable were children below eight years of age. All area DCPs have been asked to furnish a detailed report on the missing children.
“The police were not even ready to register a case. After persistent efforts, an FIR was lodged. The police have not been able to make any headway, let alone visit my house. They tell us to bring us clues. They should come here at least and start the investigations,” said a distraught Prakash.
So he has started investigating the case on his own. Every morning he leaves home and scours a specific locality. “Every day I go to one specific area in Delhi and look for my son. I leave home with his photograph in my hand, hoping against hope that someone might be able to give information about him. But to no avail,” he said. Despite informing Kapashera police that they suspected one of their neighbours, the police have not interrogated them, he added.
Kanwaljeet Singh, a driver, has lost all hope. His ten-year-old daughter Manpreet went missing on February 2. “For a month my husband did not go to work. We searched our daughter everywhere. She is a young girl, I shudder to think if someone might hurt her or exploit her,” said Shweta Kaur, Manpreet’s mother.
“We have three more children and we have to feed them. My husband can’t take leave anymore or he will not be able to support the family. We have to move on in life,” she said.