Teenager cycles from Patiala to Delhi to meet YouTuber
The teenager, who reached Delhi early Wednesday morning after cycling nearly 300 kilometres, spent two days and as many nights roaming around Pitampura.
To meet a YouTube influencer whose videos inspired him, a 13-year-old boy cycled all the way from Punjab’s Patiala to Delhi without informing his family, the Delhi Police said on Saturday, adding that the teenager was rescued from Pitampura, in north-west Delhi, on Friday evening, three days after he left his home for school, but instead journeyed to Delhi, to YouTuber Nishay Malhan’s home.
The teenager, who reached Delhi early Wednesday morning after cycling nearly 300 kilometres, spent two days and as many nights roaming around Pitampura and sleeping inside a parked car in the neighbourhood where the YouTuber lives with his family.
His family in Punjab meanwhile filed a missing person’s case at the Anaj Mandi police station in Patiala on October 5 and told the Punjab Police that he may have gone to Delhi to meet the YouTuber.
Apart from his family members, people known to the teenager also used social media to post information about him going missing and sought help from the Delhi Police and the public to safely rescue him, the police said.
“When we found him, the boy had with him just ₹250 that was left over after spending on his food and water during his journey and stay in Delhi. He could not meet the influencer as he had flown to Dubai to attend a family function there. The boy was inspired by his videos and had met him in the past as well, when the teenager’s family brought him to Delhi to meet the influencer,” said a senior police officer, asking not to be named.
Deputy commissioner of police (north-west) Usha Rangnani said on Thursday evening, the north-west district police were informed that a 13-year-old boy from Patiala may have come to Delhi on his bicycle instead of going to school. It was suspected that he may have come to Pitampura to meet YouTuber Nishay Malhan, who lives there.
“The personnel of Maurya Enclave police station were tasked to trace the missing boy. A six-member team carried out a thorough search and circulated information about the teenager on WhatsApp groups of the local resident welfare associations (RWAs). They also scanned CCTV camera footage and finally found the boy on a cycle near the YouTuber’s house,” she said.
The team members went to that neighbourhood and enquired from security guards and residents. One of the security guards identified the teenager as the one who had entered the building where the influencer lived on the fourth floor with his family. Further enquiry revealed that the influencer was in Dubai for a family function, the DCP said.
The team followed the routes taken by the teenager and finally found him at the District Park in Pitampura. He was reunited with his family, who had reached Delhi by then, she added.
“My grandson was misguided by some YouTuber and he left the (Patiala) house on October 4. Instead of going to school, he reached Delhi on his bicycle. For two days we scanned CCTV cameras till Karnal. We then reached Delhi and met Maurya Enclave police station personnel who were already searching for him. They promised me that they would find my grandson and they have kept their promise,” the grandfather of the teenager can be heard saying in a video shared by the police.