The Cyberabad Police on Wednesday arrested a self-styled godman who robbed people of their jewellery after diverting their attention.

The accused, Kalyan Raju, 35, hailing from Maidkukur in Kadapa district, moved around in colonies dressed as a godman.

After gaining people’s confidence, he used to convince them to allow him to perform special pujas on gold ornaments to ward off evils.

After gaining access into the house, he would perform certain rituals and send away the male members of the family, advising them to perform puja at a far-off place. Then, he would ask the women present in the house to bring their jewellery for the rituals.

He would keep the ornaments in a box and, after diverting the inmates’ attention, replace them with rice and leave the house, advising them to open the box after some time, said Mylardevpally Police Inspector B. Ramesh. Raju was also involved in similar cases in Visakapatnam, the officer added.

The accused robbed gold ornaments weighing 15 tolas from a couple in a similar manner at Babulreddy Nagar in Mylardevpally 20 days ago, after which police launched a manhunt for him.

He was arrested while he was moving in a suspicious manner in the area on Wednesday. Gold ornaments weighing eight tolas were recovered from him, the officer said.