Tribune News Service
Chandigarh, September 17
Angry after being reprimanded for a mischief, nine-year-old Arjun had left his home in Panipat in a huff only to get lost, ending up on the list of hundreds of missing children in the police records.
His mother, Kiran, gave up all hope of finding him ever again after months of visiting the local police station yielded no information about him.
But, on September 11 this year, two years after he became a “missing” statistic in the police records, Arjun was found at Child Care Institute (CCI) in Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh.
Assistant Sub-Inspector (ASI) Rajesh Kumar, deployed with the Anti-Human Trafficking Unit of the State Crime Branch, randomly called up CCI in Lucknow on September 7 to find out whether or not it housed any “missing” child from Haryana.
He is driven by the mission to locate as many missing children as he can.
“CCI officials mentioned about a boy, who claimed to be from Haryana. I spoke to the boy to get any clues to his identity. He told me he was from the Lohar community and lived near a temple. He recalled that his home was near a bus stand from where buses left for Samalkha,” ASI Kumar said.
In light of the Samalkha clue, he immediately got on to the task of making the information and the boy’s photo viral on several police groups on social media with the hope of getting some information from Panipat area.
As luck would have it, a neighbour of the boy recognised Arjun and gave the whereabouts of his family. “From then on, we kept on meeting with success and even found the FIR his parents had registered,” Kumar said.
Subsequently, the ASI spoke to Arjun’s mother, who found it unbelievable that her son had been located till she saw his picture and spoke to him.
Asked what her first words to him were, a sobbing Kiran said, “I thought somebody was playing a prank. Suddenly, after weeks of frenetic search, I was hearing that my son had been found. I did not trust my ears till I spoke to him. The way he said ‘mummy’ was enough to convince me that he was my Arjun. All I asked him the reason for leaving home without sparing a thought for us. He said he won’t do it again and then both of us began to cry. I cannot thank these police personnel enough for finding my son.”
ASI Rajesh Kumar and head constable Bhupinder Singh left with Kiran for Lucknow on Monday. Arjun was reunited with her on Tuesday afternoon.
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