The Cuffe Parade police yesterday, arrested a 20-year-old for allegedly kidnapping a five-year-old girl. Suspecting his involvement in the two murder cases, wherein toddlers — both girls — were murdered in Cuffe Parade and Colaba area in the recent past, the police will be sending the youth’s DNA sample to verify whether it matches with the DNA that was found on the previous victims.
Krishna Laxman Pawar (20), a resident of Dr Homi Bhabha Nagar in Colaba, lured Samreen Mula Shaikh (5) with a chocolate while she was playing near her residence at Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar Nagar in Cuffe Parade. When Samreen approached Krishna for the chocolate, he picked her up and scurried to flee the spot. Fortunately for Samreen, her elder sister Chandani (8), who was close by, got alarmed by seeing her sister being carried away by a stranger and rushed indoors to inform her parents. “The parents immediately followed Pawar, intercepted him and rescued Samreen,” said an officer from Cuffe Parade police station.
Undeterred by his initial failure, Krishna then tried luring another toddler. Fortunately, the victim’s parents were around to foil his bid. Enraged by his actions, they caught Krishna and beat him black and blue, and handed him over to the police.
“I registered a case of kidnapping against Pawar. I thought he was just taking Samreen to play with him. But when I heard about the second incident, I registered a complaint against him,” said Mula, who is a labourer and has three daughters.
“We have arrested Pawar and despite several rounds of interrogations, he hasn’t revealed much. We will send his blood samples for DNA test, which will help us ascertain whether he is involved in the previous murders or not,” said Vilas Bole, police inspector (Crime), Cuffe Parade police station. Krishna has been remanded to police custody till April 13.
The two toddlers — Karishma Chavan and Jagruti Patel — both aged around three years, were found dead in a secluded spot next to the Nariman Point Fire Brigade Depot. While Jagruti was found murdered on November 13 last year, Karishma was found dead on January 18, less than 20 feet away from the spot of crime. Citing similarities in both cases, officers had said they suspected the involvement of the same person in both murders. Medical reports, however, had not shown sexual assault.