Repeated telephone calls by kidnappers of a 50-year-old property dealer Mohinder Kumar Kala, to his nephew Raju Sikka, asking him to arrange ransom money, helped the cops arrest four of the kidnappers and rescue the victim safely on Tuesday night.
The kidnappers made around 10 calls to Sikka in 12 hours. The police officials were already keeping a tab on their movement through technical assistance and mobile locations.
Police sources said Kala and one of the absconding accused Vikas Jolly were known to each other. Both used to bet on cricket matches. The sources added that Kala had won a kitty and got Rs 30 lakh and Jolly knew about it.
They knew that Kala used to go to fetch milk around 8.30 every day and, on Tuesday morning; they executed their plan and kidnapped him.
After kidnapping him, they first went to Tarn Taran and then Patti, Zira, Makhu in Ferozepur, Moga, Shahkot and Lohian, from where they were arrested at last. They even enjoyed beer during their drive.
The accused also changed the registration number plates of the Maruti Swift Dzire car (original number PB02-Q-0400) during the drive.
The accused had conspired to seek Rs 1 crore as ransom from his family.
As they called many a time to Raju to arrange the money without telling any amount, the family had arranged `18 lakh.
On Wednesday evening, the police produced Gurpreet Singh and Lalit Kumar, residents of Patti; Gurdev Singh, a resident of Burj village in Tarn Taran and Raman Kumar, a resident of Chheharta in Amritsar in a local court and got a three-day remand.
The police said they were trying to arrest the remaining accused Jolly and Gurminder Singh, who were following them in another car, but fled from the spot. The police have yet to get the records of a hotel where the kidnappers stayed and kept tab on the victim’s movements.
Further, it has yet to be checked whether the two .32 revolvers and 12 cartridges recovered from their possession, were legal or illegal.
Later, the court sanctioned the remand and accused would be produced in the court on Friday.
As per a CCTV camera footage, Kala came outside his house at 8.18 am wearing a halfpant and red T-shirt and went towards Burlton Park on his Hero Splendor (PB08-CT-9389) bike on Tuesday. Within A few seconds, a white Swift Dzire car started following him. The car’s registration number was not clearly visible in the footage, leaving only 4060 as readable.