The 19-year-old who the police believe raped and murdered a nine-year-old girl in Vatsalatai Nagar had telecast the sketches of the suspect through the local cable network he worked for.
"It never once occurred to us that he could be involved," said a colleague requesting anonymity. The accused worked at a cable and Internet company located near the Nehru Nagar police station. The police have also detained four of his friends in the case. One of them is the kin of the cable company's owner, police sources said.
Police said the accused is articulate and knew the area well. All the three places, from where the victims went missing, were under the same cable company's area of operations, the police said.
A Class 9 dropout, the accused is the second of six siblings. The family lives in a shanty in Qureishi Nagar, meters away from the home of Mohammed Ajmeri who was arrested in the case but granted bail.
Locals said the boy is an introvert who worked hard. His mother works as a masseur for infants while his father does odd jobs. "I know my son would never commit such a heinous act," his mother said.
The family said the police took the boy away four days ago but allowed him to return home. They picked him up again on Tuesday. The family alleged the police have not given any proof of the boy's involvement. "They are framing my brother because they have failed to nab the real culprit," said his younger brother.
The family claims the boy was at work when the victim went missing and when her body was found. "The police's claim is unbelievable," said Sohail Sheikh, a local resident. Neighbour Sumera Fatima (35) said, "A woman can tell if a man is wicked. This boy is not like that."