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Kindergarten student rescued

GREAT ESCAPE: Saikrishna Raju who was rescued by Cyberabad police on Saturday. Photo: P.V. Sivakumar  

Staff Reporter

Cyberabad police arrest a gang of eight kidnappers

HYDERABAD: Cyberabad police on Saturday arrested a gang of eight members, who kidnapped a kindergarten student Saikrishna Raju 10 days ago for a ransom of Rs. 10 lakh, when they came to Petbasheerabad to release him.

The alleged mastermind behind the abduction, Vijay Kumar, turned out to be a close friend of the boy's father Narayana Raju. Kumar and Satish, a servant in the boy's house, were among the arrested.

An amount of Rs. 9.6 lakhs was recovered from them, Cyberabad Police Commissioner S. Prabhakar Reddy told a press conference.

A black belt holder in karate, Kumar took to drinks and began extorting money from gullible people. On learning that his friend Raju made a fast buck in real estate business, Kumar plotted to abduct Saikrishna. He befriended Satish offering him a share in the ransom amount.

Satish used to drop the boy at his school and bring him back home.

On January 29, the gang abducted the boy and took him to the house of Ramesh, one of the gang members, in Khammam.

Threat to kill

The same evening they called up Narayana Raju saying they would kill his son if he did not deliver Rs. 20 lakhs to them at a designated place in Nalgonda. The boy's father went to Nalgonda with Rs. 5 lakhs saying he could manage only that much. After much persuasion, the gang agreed to set the boy free for Rs. 10 lakhs.

The entire ransom amount was paid in Khammam on Wednesday. Meanwhile, Kumar had been meeting the boy's father to know about his moves. But neither the boy's father nor the police could notice the `kidnapper' moving amidst them.

The kidnappers kept insisting that they would release the boy, but kill Satish to give an impression that he was not connected to the abduction. Finally, the gang members were nabbed by policemen who lay in wait in plainclothes, when they drove to Petbasheerabad in a van along with the boy.