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Grisly end to teen plot

Howrah, July 3: They needed quick money ó apparently to start a business ó so they decided to kidnap a friend. When the plan backfired, the teenagers decided to kill him so no one could carry tales to police.

Two 19-year-old dropouts Sampad Mukherjee and Arijit Pal, both from middle-class families in Howrah, kidnapped their friend Kuntal Sain, an undergraduate student of computers and son of a businessman, yesterday.

Hours later, they killed him ó there were multiple stab wounds on the body ó when they found the needle of suspicion pointing straight at them.

The killing has left the residents of Domurjala locality shocked. While Kuntalís parents are still to cope with his death, police are at a loss how two youths with no criminal record could have acted with professional expertise. Sampad and Arijit have been arrested for abduction and murder.

On Thursday, the duo called up Kuntal and told him they wanted to discuss his progress in studies and fixed up a meeting the next day near Domurjala stadium. Before setting out, Kuntal told his family he was going to Sampadís house where Arijit would also be present.

When they reached Sampadís residence, the duo locked Kuntal up in a room. Around 3.30 pm, they called his father, demanded a ransom of Rs 25 lakh and told him not to go to the police.

Soon after, Kuntalís father Avijit and his uncle Surojit called up Sampad and Arijit to find out the whereabouts of the boy. Then they tapped some other friends, but to no avail.

Towards evening, Surojit got in touch with members of Shivaji Sangha, a local club. They immediately caught hold of Sampad and Arijit and grilled them, but could not ferret out any information.

Finally, a passing police patrol got into the act. After consistent quizzing, they got Sampad and Arijit to confess the kidnap and killing. But the duo didnít let on that they had thrown Kuntalís body off a bridge near Kona expressway. ďWe started a nightlong search and early today stumbled up-on the body. Kuntalís uncle identified him,Ē said district police superintendent Mihir Kumar Bhattacharya.

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