Mumbai: Family friends kidnap toddler to settle scores

Mumbai: A Navi Mumbai-based couple kidnapped their friend’s toddler son to settle scores over unpaid car dues. The police traced the toddler within seven hours of him being kidnapped and apprehended the couple from a toll naka in Bharuch.

The accused couple, Jinnat and Saroj Rao, have been booked under relevant sections of the IPC for kidnapping and common intention. According to the complainant, Saroj had visited the toddler’s residence in Navi Mumbai on Saturday afternoon, when the child was with his mother. Since the Raos were family friends, Saroj was invited without any second thoughts.

Minutes later, Saroj offered to treat the toddler to an ice cream and took him for a ride. Strangely, when the toddler’s mother was waving goodbye, she saw Saroj’s husband, Jinnat, picking them up and leaving.When the toddler did not return home for over an hour, she tried calling Saroj and Jinnat, who had switched off their mobile phones.

The toddler’s mother then informed her husband about the incident, who approached the police and registered a case of kidnapping. The toddler’s parents revealed they had purchased a car from the Raos and were yet to clear the dues owing to financial hardship.

The unpaid dues had soured the Raos relations with the toddler’s family. “The Raos held a grudge over unpaid dues and had kidnapped the toddler to settle scores. After getting details of the Hyundai Accent car, in which Saroj and Jinnat had abducted the toddler, police tracked the location of Rao’s mobile phone, which showed they were moving towards Gujarat,” said a senior police officer.

Acting on the information, police alerted the crime branch officials in Gujarat and laid a trap near Bharuch toll naka, where the Raos were arrested with their driver at 10pm on Saturday and the toddler was rescued. The accused couple was brought to NRI Sagari police station for further investigation and were produced in a local magistrate court on Sunday.

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