Rudraksh kidnap-murder case: How the law caught up with a compulsive gambler
The boy had been kidnapped from Hanuman Park, situated just behind his house, on October 9, 2014. The main accused, Ankur Padia, kidnapped Rudraksh so that he could pay off his gambling debts.
Jaipur: As the special SC/ST cases court in Kota awarded the death penalty to Ankur Padia for killing an innocent 7-year-old boy – Rudraksh nearly three and a half years ago, the memories of the case were again fresh in the minds of Kota residents on Monday.
Rajasthan DGP OP Gahlotra said that while Ankur was handed the capital punishment for kidnapping and killing the child, the co-accused Anoop Padia – Ankur’s brother was sentenced to life imprisonment. Their domestic help Mahaveer was sentenced to four years imprisonment for destroying evidence in the case, while another accused, Karanjeet was awarded two-year imprisonment for providing a SIM to the main accused on a bogus ID.
The boy had been kidnapped from Hanuman Park, situated just behind his house, on October 9, 2014.
“The boy’s father Madan Mohan Handa told the police that the boy had gone to the park around 5.30 pm. The father received a call around 7.30 on his landline number. The caller said that the boy had been kidnapped. The father first thought that someone was joking, but the caller who identified himself as Jafar Mohammed – started abusing Handa and told him that the boy had been taken to Kashmir. The caller then demanded a ransom of Rs 2 crore,” DGP said.
When the father told the caller that how he would arrange such a huge amount of money, the caller told him he could do it.
“You are a bank manager and your wife is a teacher at a convent school. You can easily arrange the money,” the caller told Handa. He disconnected the call after telling the father that he would call again the next morning and tell him where to send the money.
When the family realized that the call was genuine (because they couldn’t find the boy), they immediately informed the police.
Jawahar Nagar police station registered an FIR. Senior police officers including then ADG, crime Ajit Singh, was sent to Kota to supervise the investigation.
“The CCTV footages showed a Nissan Micra car in the neighborhood when the boy was kidnapped. The police also studied the call detail records of the family’s landline phone,” said the officer.
The cops pulled up registration details of hundreds of Nissan Micra cars in Kota. Meanwhile the police got the information about a boy’s body in the nearby canal. The body was identified as Rudraksh. Handkerchiefs were found wrapped around the boy’s neck, mouth and hands. A postmortem examination revealed the cause of death as asphyxia due to strangling.
The police prepared a sketch on the basis of statements taken from other children playing in the same park.
The police finally identified the kidnapper as Ankur Padia, a resident of Om Enclave in Anantpura area of Kota. The police also recovered the mobile phone used by Ankur to make the ransom call.
Ankur Padia ran a stationary and books shop near Bansal Classes in Kota. The police recovered his laptop, mobile phone, internet data card, and a pen drive from the shop. The police found the car used in the kidnap parked at Om Enclave. A bundle of ropes, blankets, scissors, tape and several other items used in the kidnap were also recovered.
The police then launched a massive hunt for Ankur Padia and found him hiding in Lucknow along with his brother Anoop Padia. He was arrested on October 27, almost 18 days after the kidnap.
The police then arrested 19-year-old Karanjeet Sardar from Delhi for providing Ankur with a SIM card without verifying the ID. Karanjeet who ran a mobile shop in Krishnapuri area of Tilak Nagar in Delhi provided the SIM on a bogus ID. The police also arrested 28-year-old Mahaveer for destroying evidence in the case.
“Ankur was a compulsive gambler who had lost a huge amount of money in gambling. He kidnapped Rudraksh to pay off his gambling debts,” said Gahlotra.