The greed to get hold of their share in the family property led the 24-year-old childless construction worker and his wife to kidnap their neighbour’s nine-month-old son.
Barkatali Pathan (24) and his wife Salma Pathan (23) were arrested from Delhi on Wednesday.
The child, Suraj, was reunited with his parents who live in Vikhroli.
They kidnapped the child so that they could fool Barkatali's parents in Rajasthan into believing it was theirs. His parents were upset with them as Salma could not conceive.
Salma Pathan, who had three children from her earlier marriage, had undergone an operation to stop conceiving, said the police.
The parents were unhappy about this and this meant that the couple would not get any of the 15-acre land and two flats belonging to Barkatali's parents. The police said the accused knew the child's parents Dashrath (23) and Paru Wankhade (20) as the two families had been working together on a construction site at Maharashtra Nagar in Vikhroli.
The two families would visit each other's house often.
On August 10, Salma visited the Wankhade household and took Suraj along with her under the pretext of babysitting him.
When she did not return for hours, Paru got anxious and went to the Pathans' house but it was locked.
Suspecting something wrong, she called up a husband.
When Dashrath could not trace the Pathans, he lodged a complaint with the Trombay police station against the duo.
J. Khandagle, assistant commissioner of police (Trombay Division), said: “By tracking Pathan's cell phone we managed to track the victim’s parents to Rajasthan.
After learning that they had already left for Delhi, a police team reached there and arrested the duo and took custody of the nine-month-old. The accused had taken a house in Delhi and Barkatali was selling fruits to earn a living there. The child was safe.”
Paru said: “It appears that everything was planned by the accused. They won our confidence over a period of time. We started trusting them with our son and they took advantage of that.”