It has been over 24 hours since the officers from Government Railway Police (GRP), Bandra unit, initiated a search operation to recover an automatic firearm dumped in a nullah opposite Bandra Terminus, but all their efforts have gone down the drain so far. The operation will resume once the rain stops.
Labourers scan the nullah for the stolen revolver
A GRP officer (Crime Branch) said they are searching for a US-made .32-calibre revolver that was dumped into the nullah by two teenagers — both aged 17 — which they stole from a Navi Mumbai-based developer aboard Bhuj-Bandra Express on June 17.
An old photo of Rajput posing with the firearm
Besides stealing the firearm worth Rs 3.25 lakh from the holster attached to Vanveer Rajput’s belt, the duo also stole four cartridges (Rs 800 each) and Rs 16,000. The incident occurred in the wee hours of Friday while Rajput was asleep in his first class compartment. He was travelling to Mumbai from Rajasthan.
“The incident first came to light on Saturday after the boys disclosed it to an elderly man from their neighbourhood. It was he who took them to the Nirmal Nagar police station. Following their interrogation, the officers handed them over to the Bandra GRP. Both the boys were in the court and are currently in Dongri remand home,” the officer added.
“We’ve been searching since Saturday afternoon, but have found nothing. The search was initiated based on the information police recovered from the boys. We have used kilos of sand to block both ends of the nullah, but the only thing that one of the labourers found was a toy gun,” said Yunus Khan, contractor hired for the job.
Narrating his ordeal, Rajput (49) said all his belongings were in place when he last checked them before going to bed on Thursday night when the train had reached Ahmedabad. But all of it was missing when he woke up the next morning following which he raised an alarm. After the train reached Bandra, Rajput informed an on-duty security personnel who told him to register a complaint at the GRP police station. “The police is doing its job, but nothing positive has been achieved so far. Moreover, I’ve paid the contractor (Rs 35,000) undertaking the search operation so that I get back my belongings,” Rajput said.
Sub-inspector SM Kharmate from Bandra GRP police station said, “During questioning, one of the boys told us that they got scared and dumped the gun in the nullah. Based on this information we initiated a search operation, but we are yet to find the firearm.”