Body of 16-year-old recovered after 13 days of search from Greater Noida canal
The body of a 16-year-old boy, who was strangled by his friends, has been found in a canal in Greater Noida after a search that lasted 13 days.
The Noida police on Sunday said they found the body of the 16-year-old boy — the son of a businessman who was strangulated by his two friends 13 days ago — from a canal in Dankaur in Greater Noida.
Sarthak Sengar, assistant commissioner of police of Greater Noida, said that Vaibhav Singhal’s body was found stuck in the bushes in a canal at 1pm on Sunday. The body had travelled 20km from the spot where it was dumped into the canal by the deceased boy’s friends, he added. The body has been sent for an autopsy and it will be handed to Singhal’s family members afterwards, Sengar said.
Singhal was killed on January 30 by his two friends — a 19-year-old man identified as Maz Pathan, and a minor whose name is being withheld to protect his identity, said SM Khan, deputy commissioner of police of Greater Noida. Pathan has been arrested while the minor has been detained.
“Pathan told police that Singhal allegedly possessed personal photographs of him with a female friend. On January 30, Pathan called Singhal to the local park to ask him to delete the photographs, but the two had an altercation. Pathan was accompanied by his minor friend and the two strangulated Singhal,” a senior police officer associated with the case said on condition of anonymity. The two dumped Singhal into a canal near Hinoti village, the officer added.
Later that night, Singhal’s father, Aruj, a trader from Greater Noida’s Bilaspur town, filed a missing person complaint at the Dankaur police station. “On January 30, my son left home at 7pm without informing anyone. We were unable to find him despite calling him and searching for him,” said the complaint filed by Singhal.
Based on the complaint, a first information report was registered against unidentified suspects at the Dankaur police station under sections of kidnapping of the Indian Penal Code.
When there was no progress in the case even after nine days, Singhal’s family members as well as traders’ associations in Greater Noida held a protest last Wednesday at the Bilaspur police post alleging police inaction.
DCP Khan said that the police received a tip on Wednesday that the deceased boy’s friends were involved in his disappearance. “A local police team identified Pathan and the minor as suspects. They were spotted near Sakka village and when asked to stop, they tried to flee and Pathan fired at the police. In retaliation, he was shot in the leg by us and taken into custody on Wednesday. The minor was also apprehended,” said DCP Khan.
During interrogation, the suspects allegedly admitted to killing Singhal, said investigators.
“A team of 100 personnel including five teams of the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF), local divers, and police officers had been searching for Singhal’s body since January 30,” said ACP Sengar. He added that the body was stuck at the bottom of the canal but when water was released from a dam in Hapur, the body came up and was recovered.