Missing schoolboy’s body recovered in West Bengal

January 31st, 2009 - 7:37 pm ICT by IANS  

Kolkata, Jan 31 (IANS) The body of seven-year-old Yash Lakhotia, missing from his school since Friday, was recovered Saturday in West Bengal’s Howrah district, officials said. The police suspect someone known to the boy to be behind the kidnapping and murder. “The class II student of M.C. Kejriwal Vidyapeeth at Liluah was kidnapped by someone known to him,” Niraj Kumar Singh, Howrah police superintendent, told reporters.

Singh said Yash was kept confined in a godown on Foreshore Road in Howrah district before he was apparently suffocated by more than one person.

Yash, the son a businessman who owns a large sweet shop, had multiple injuries and scratch marks on his body, indicating the boy did try to resist the miscreants, the police said.

“We have learnt after talking to his schoolmates that Yash left school with someone known to him. He told his friends that he was going with an uncle, and asked them to inform the driver,” Singh said.

While not completely ruling out a kidnap-for-ransom theory, Singh, however, said: “We have a feeling that probably he had been abducted for other reasons”.

The police superintendent said local resident Santosh Singh, close to the Lakhotia family but a man with a criminal past, has emerged as the prime suspect.

“Santosh Singh may be involved,” he said.

“We have detained Santosh Singh’s brother-in-law Ganesh Chowdhury, who has admitted that Santosh Singh was earlier arrested in a kidnapping case in Bihar’s Begusarai,” Singh said.

The police are keeping a close watch on the whereabouts of local miscreants and checking their antecedents, he said.

West Bengal’s principal opposition Trinamool Congress chief Mamata Banerjee rushed to the Lakotias’ residence to console the bereaved family.

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