After the body of 14-year-old Ritik Raj, a class 9 student of a private school, was recovered from near a community hall under Hulasganj police station of neighbouring Jehanabad district--40 km north-west of Biharsharif district headquarters--on Wednesday morning, police said the boy was abducted by three of his friends.
Raj, son of a rice mill owner, Niranjan Sahu of Ekangarsarai in Nalanda district, was kidnapped on Monday. The kidnappers had demanded Rs 50 lakh for his safe release, the victim’s family claimed.
Two accused, including mastermind Dipu Kumar Yadav, who is grandson of RJD’s district-level leader, were arrested on Wednesday.
“It is suspected that the main reason for the kidnapping and murder was personal enmity rather than ransom money,” said in-charge SP Rajesh Kumar. Even though the victim’s family claimed they had received a ransom call, the police said neither the accused nor the victim’s family received any call or demand for ransom.
According to the SP, the two accused--Dipu and Ashish--took the victim on a bike provided by one Kundan who runs a coaching centre in which Dipu was enrolled as a student.
Earlier, the police nabbed Ashish from his residence. He disclosed the whereabouts of Dipu and Kundan. However, Ashish managed to escape from Ekangarsarai police station premises. After his escape, a constable was suspended for dereliction of duty.
As the news of the murder reached Ekangarsarai, hundreds of people blocked roads and demanded action against the police for its failure to trace the boy soon after the incident came to light. “Protestors pelted stones at the police and shouted slogans against the administration. Tension still prevails in Ekangarsarai,” said a police official.
The agitators had a scuffle with the police when the latter attempted to clear the road block. When the police used force to disperse the protesters, they started brickbatting in which several people, including four policemen, were injured.
As the boy’s body reached Ekangarsarai on Wednesday morning, people also gheraoed the police station. The business community of Ekangarsarai pulled down shutters to protest the murder.
Additional police force has been deployed at the site to bring the situation under control. DSP Parmendra Bharti said the student had left his home around 6 am on Sunday with his friend Ashish to play cricket. He said the teenager might have been killed the same day. It is likely that the incident occurred between Bolbigha and Koeribigha villages and the body was dumped at the nearby panchayat bhawan (community hall), which is in a deserted place.
The arrested duo admitted their involvement and narrated the sequence of kidnapping and murder. They had planned the kidnapping in April, said a police official, adding that the police is trying to nab Ashish who too was involved.
The police have registered a case under the Indian Penal Code (IPC) section 363 (kidnapping). On Wednesday, it added section 364 A (kidnapping for ransom) and 302 (murder).