| The car owned by Avishek Jain at Pradhannagar police station in Siliguri on Friday. Picture by Kundan Yolmo
Siliguri, Jan. 4: A Darjeeling-based businessman escaped narrowly with his life last night after his abductors repeatedly stabbed him in his car but he somehow jumped out of the running vehicle.
Twenty-six-year-old Avishek Jain, who supplies food grains to the Food Corporation of India, suffered several injuries to his chest and head.
A little before 11pm yesterday, Avishek, who lives in Jorebungalow in Darjeeling, left his father’s apartment is Punjabipara in Siliguri.
“My father has a flat at Punjabipara which is often used when they come to Siliguri for business. Yesterday, my brother was here for some business work. Around 10pm, he took his car and went out to have his dinner at a hotel on Sevoke Road,” said Payel, Avishek’s sister, who is married and also lives in Punjabipara.
Avishek, who has filed a complaint with police today, mentioned that after dining at a restaurant, he went to Court More near the Siliguri district hospital to buy some medicines.
“I bought the medicines and milk and was returning to the flat. On the way, I stopped in front of an ATM on Sevoke Road to draw some money. When I returned to the car, my wife called my cellphone,” he said. “While I was speaking on the phone, two men forcibly got into my car and flashed a dagger at me.”
Avishek, who was dragged to the back seat, said one of the men took the wheel and sped down Sevoke Road.
“It was almost midnight and the roads were deserted. I tried to resist them. The car was then moving towards Darjeeling More,” he said from his hospital bed.
“One of the men, unable to hold me back, attacked me with the dagger and stabbed me several times,” Avishek said.
By then, the car had reached Salbari, 5km from Siliguri town. Avishek now made a desperate and dangerous attempt to escape.
He somehow struggled free, opened a door of the car and leapt out.
The car drove away towards Sukna and Avishek lay on NH55, bleeding, for some time.
When he could get up, Avishek managed to reach a house nearby and started banging on the door.
“It was past midnight and we were sleeping. Suddenly, there were repeated bangs on the door and somebody yelled for help,” said Dipak Sharma, the house owner.
“We came out and found the youth bleeding. He wanted help and said some people were trying to take him away and kill him.”
Hearing the narrative, Dipak and his wife, who is a home guard, took him in and called the police.
Pradhannagar police personnel took Avishek to Siliguri district hospital.
“His family members were also informed. Later, as the police started searching for the miscreants, they found the car abandoned in a deserted place near Sukna,” a senior police officer said.
Why Avishek was abducted in this manner is not clear.
Last year, there were two incidents of abduction.
A senior businessman who resided on Hill Cart Road was abducted, taken to Bihar and murdered while he had gone to Matigara, on the outskirts of the city, to collect money from a borrower.
Another businessman, a rolling mill owner based in Khalpara, was abducted from NH31.
His car was found by police near Bidhannagar, around 30km from here, off a highway.
The businessman could not be traced.
Avishek’s sister said she was “clueless about who attacked him and tried to take him away. My brother never had any enmity or problems with any person so far.”
Police officers investigating the case said they are exploring different angles.
“In the course of our investigation, we have learnt that the miscreants had asked for money from him while he was in the car. They have, however, not taken anything from him. The motive of stealing a car also does not stand as the car was eventually recovered,” investigators said.
Doctors, who treated Avishek at the district hospital, said he has suffered multiple external injuries.
“He has cuts in the abdomen and forehead and bruises in his limbs. As of now, he is in stable condition but would be kept under observation for another couple of days,” a doctor said.
Anand Kumar, the commissioner of Siliguri Metropolitan Police, said: “We have received a complaint from the youth. Our officials are trying to verify the details and trying to find the motive behind such an act by the miscreants.”