Police have managed to crack the Tahira kidnap case within 32 hours. To top it off, the one-and-a-half-year old was recovered safely.
A special team led by Patna senior superintendent of police (SSP) Manu Maharaaj recovered Tahira from Shivpur village, some 20km from the city, on Wednesday evening.
It was a feeling of relief and joy for Tahira's family after she was handed over to her mother and grandfather by the SSP.
Manu said Rajkumar and two other men had kidnapped the girl and they were planning to demand a ransom of Rs 20 lakh.
“Rajkumar had planned the entire abduction. The police have been successful in arresting him from Shivpur village. The child was recovered from a thatched house where she had been kept. Two men managed to escape and raids are on to nab them. There was a marriage in Rajkumar’s house and he was in need of money. He would be interrogated more for more information. Their plan was to kill the child soon after they got the ransom amount. Taking a lesson from this incident, it is an appeal again to the people to get drivers and domestic helps verified by the police. It was a challenge for us.”
Sources said the number of missed calls given by Rajkumar to Anjum had indicated that he wanted to communicate.
“On Tuesday too, Rajkumar had given a missed call but with the phone being silent, Anjum failed to pick it up. It seemed he wanted to communicate. The police had also detained some family members of Rajkumar and were continuously questioning them for information,” another officer said.
On Wednesday, Rajkumar gave three missed calls on Anjum’s number. However, Anjum and his family didn’t respond or call back as directed by police.
Earlier, sources had hinted at some friction between Anjum’s family members and Rajkumar, as the reason behind the crime.
Anjum, Tahira’s grandfather, told The Telegraph: “The police did not tell us their mode of investigations. They asked me not to call on Rajkumar’s number. I was asked to keep all cellphones, which has Rajkumar’s number saved, with myself,” he said.
On Tuesday, after Tahira went missing, the family members lodged a kidnapping FIR naming the driver as the prime accused. The driver had been recruited two years ago.
Tahira lived at house number 180A in the Patliputra Colony. Rajkumar’s last mobile tower location was traced to the Pahari locality near the Bypass area.
Earlier in the day, an officer said: “This could be a result of some kind of friction between the man and his employer. Our primary concern is the recovery of the child.”