Man stages own abduction to avoid wedding arranged by kin
A 31-year-old software engineer allegedly staged his own abduction and asked his parents for a ₹5 lakh ransom as part of his plan to escape his impending nuptial, which was scheduled for April 23, the police said.
He gave the police the runaround by travelling to different states from April 19 and had texted his family of his abduction. However, on Wednesday, he ran out of luck and was arrested in Sukhrali, Sector 17, when he was about to visit his paying guest (PG) accommodation to pick up his clothes, said police.
The man was identified as Ravi Singh, a native of Jhansi in Uttar Pradesh. Police said the man did not want to get married as he intends to marry his girlfriend, who is currently a Delhi University student.
On April 19, Singh, who lived with his friends in the PG, told his friends that he was going to Jhansi for his wedding, after distributing wedding invitations to his colleagues and friends. His friends told the police he did not seem unhappy at the time.
The police said he was expected to reach Jhansi the same day but did not. Meanwhile, his family members received a text message from Singh’s number stating that he had been abducted and also asking for a ransom of ₹5 lakh.
“Singh boarded a bus from Iffco Chowk to Dhaula Kuan and later boarded a bus to Chandigarh. On his way, he sent two text messages to his father and one to a cousin. The father, who was busy with wedding arrangements, contacted the Gurugram Police. Singh’s mother broke down upon hearing the news and was hospitalised,” said Muhammad Akil, the commissioner of police.
His father reached Gurugram on April 21 and met the police. “We got suspicious as, during technical surveillance, no other number was operational at the same spot and despite demanding ransom money, no place had been fixed for the same,” said Vivek Kundu, station house officer of Sector 18 police station.
An eight-member team, headed by Kundu, spread out to Chandigarh, Haridwar, Jammu, Delhi and Kurukshetra and two of them tracked his mobile phone locations. “We were tracking him through his phone location. It was difficult to track him as he kept his phone mostly switched off,” said Kundu.
On Wednesday afternoon, Singh contacted his cousin, who lives in Noida, on his phone, after meeting whom he returned to his PG in Gurugram. The police were able to track him as his phone was switched on.
“We arrested him in the evening and will produce him in the court on Thursday. We will apply for a three-day police remand as we need to recover the mobile phone used in the crime and need to take him to the places to ensure no other person was involved,” said Kundu.