Over two months on, assistant director Padmalal Jayanthan untraceable

Updated: Jul 13, 2020, 07:23 IST | Faizan Khan | Mumbai

Padmalal Jayanthan told a relative on May 4 that he was boarding a Shramik train to go home to Kerala, but his family has not heard from him since

CCTV footage grab of a man seen leaving Jayanthan's bag at the FOB near GTB station
CCTV footage grab of a man seen leaving Jayanthan's bag at the FOB near GTB station

Over two months since he disappeared, the Sion police have been unable to find any trace of a 30-year-old assistant director, whose professional camera bag and Mac laptop were found near GTB railway station.

Padmalal Jayanthan worked as an assistant director (AD) for movies such as 2 states, Singham, Heroine and Kash. He was from Kerala and stayed in a rented apartment in Madh, Malad. "Since the lockdown he was staying alone and wanted to go home to Kerala. He was very disturbed as he could not leave the city or shoot. When the government started Shramik trains, he planned to leave for Kerala on May 4. But after that we don't know his whereabouts," said his brother Jayalal, who is in Europe.

Padmalal Jayanthan's brother said he was probably depressed because he was not getting work due to the lockdown
Padmalal Jayanthan's brother said he was probably depressed because he was not getting work due to the lockdown

'Was to board a train'
According to the family, on May 4 Padmalal told a relative in Kalina that he was going to Kurla terminus to board a Shramik train for Kerala. But after that his family didn't hear from him. After waiting for a long time, on May 27, his family filed a missing person complaint in Kerala. On June 4 they also filed a complaint with the Sion police as GTB station is in their jurisdiction.

According to the Sion police, on May 7 they had found an unclaimed bag on the FOB near Gurutegh Bahadur Nagar railway station. They found a professional camera, laptop and two movie scripts which had contact numbers in it. "We contacted those numbers and returned the scripts. A relative of Padmalal took the laptop. But we came to know he was missing only after the relative later approached us again. We registered a missing complaint and started investigation," said PSI Sanjay Mohite.

The police found no trains had gone to Kerala from May 4 to May 7. "We procured CCTV camera footage, a person is being seen leaving the bag at the location. We are trying to locate that person," Mohite added.

Cops suspect mental illness
According to Padmalal's neighbours statement to police, sometimes he behaved like an abnormal person. He even spoke to himself. The police believe he must have had a mental illness.

However, his brother said he was totally fine. "He might be in depression due to the lockdown as he was not getting work," said Jayalal.

Film director Sajeed A told mid-day, "He always wanted to be an actor. I and my family met him a month before the lockdown. He looked much better and confident than earlier. He could leave everything, but not his scripts, laptop and camera under any circumstances."

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