A month after he went missing, Delhi child’s body found in neighbour’s suitcase
Delhi Police said the boy was killed soon after he went missing on January 7. The accused allegedly kept the body in a suitcase and hid it in the bed box. Later, he killed a few rats to explain the stench to the neighboursUpdated: Feb 13, 2018, 23:14 IST
A seven-year-old boy was kidnapped, smothered to death, his body stuffed in a suitcase and concealed in a bed box in north Delhi’s Swaroop Nagar for 37 days, allegedly by a man aspiring to be a civil servant who was a former tenant of the family. The accused, the police said, was upset with the boy’s parents.
Avadhesh Sakya, 27, would allegedly kill rats and present them as the source of stench whenever questioned about the foul smell emanating from his room. At least 10 deodorant cans and perfume bottles were recovered from Sakya’s home, said Aslam Khan, DCP (north-west).
Ashish Saini, a Class 1 student, lived with his parents in Nathupura. Sakya was a tenant in the family’s home till three years ago. He was close to the family, and made the police believe that he was actively involved in the search for the missing seven-year-old, said the DCP.
On his Facebook page, Sakya claims to have served in the Central Bureau of Investigation, the Information Bureau and the income tax department, but in reality he had made three failed attempts to crack the Union Public Service Commission examination. “The fake portrayal helped the MSc (Physics) graduate build an aura around himself and the boy’s relatives were in awe of him,” said the DCP.
The boy’s relatives knew of Sakya’s closeness to the family. As a result, they had found nothing odd when Sakya had called Ashish to his one-room home to give him a bicycle as a belated birthday present, police said. That was the last time that Ashish was seen. The family had not told the police about this when they filed the complaint that the boy was missing.
Sakya was arrested and the body recovered on Tuesday morning, 37 days after he kidnapped the boy at around 5.20 pm on January 7, police said. The arrest happened after the boy’s mother, Neelam, got suspicious and insisted last week that the police be informed about Sakya’s invitation to her son on the day of his disappearance.
Sakya and the boy lived in the same neighbourhood in Nathupura in Swaroop Nagar. Ashish’s father, Karan Saini, owns a small department store in the neighbourhood. Three years ago, when Sakya moved out as a tenant at one of the houses owned by the boy’s family, he rented a room four houses down the road from the Sainis.
The DCP quoted Sakya as saying that while he was close to most of the boy’s relatives, the child’s parents despised him and even abused him in private. “The boy’s grandfather treated Sakya almost like his fourth son and this was not liked by the child’s parents,” said Khan.
The police said that Sakya’s plan was to first kill Ashish and then demand a ransom of R15-20 lakh from his parents. It is as yet unclear how he thought he would have managed to get the money without being able to return the child to his parents, or giving proof that the boy was still alive. “On my brother’s birthday on December 19, uncle [Sakya] had promised to give him a bicycle. On January 7, he asked him to meet him at his room at 5.30 pm,” said Ashish’s elder sister.
According to the police, when Ashish entered Sakya’s room, the man first played with him for around 10 minutes. The boy then mentioned that his parents disliked Sakya and had asked him to not have much to do with him, the DCP said.
“Sakya already planned the murder. The boy’s revelation acted as a trigger. He used his woollen scarf to smother the boy. He then wrapped the body in a plastic mat and stuffed it in a blue suitcase before hiding it in his bed box,” Khan said.
Sakya wanted to make the ransom call, but not before disposing the body. he found this difficult because of the presence of the police after the kidnapping had been reported and CCTV cameras in the neighbourhood, the officer added.