The combing operation involved over 1,000 Government Railway Police (GRP) personnel, who rounded up as many as 150 persons, scanning railway stations between Churchgate and Mumbai Central on the western line and CST and Byculla on Central Railway.
Police said they first tried to trace the victim’s cell phone through its IMEI number, but the accused had switched off the phone, leaving them with only a sketch, and information that he had bruises on the left side of the head, left knee and back, which he had sustained while jumping off the train.
The police learnt the accused could be a drug addict from their informer network, and since he had attacked the victim with a blade, they knew he was a hardened criminal. "We started rounding up drug addicts, history-sheeters, beggars and people who live on railway platforms. Over 150 such persons were interrogated," said an official from the Churchgate GRP.
On Sunday, when Rajkumar Tiwari was seen on CST premises, the police noticed he had the bruises the victim had mentioned. When questioned, he said he sustained them while alighting from a train on August 18.
The officials, who had not revealed their identity, then sweet-talked him into telling them about the crime. He told the police he had bought the blade for a rupee and was scouting for a prey before he attacked the victim.
"Even after he robbed the US national, he continued staying on CST premises. He wanted to escape to Uttar Pradesh, but did not have the money," said the official.