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The district's rural police has arrested seven persons for allegedly kidnapping a 32-year-old cloth trader here and starving him in captivity for around nine days.
The businessman, identified as Jitendra Joshi, had purchased clothes worth about Rs 12 lakh from the main accused -- Gajanan Harad (32), who is a textile trader in Bhiwandi township here -- but did not pay the dues, Additional Superintendent of Police, Thane Rural, Prashant Kadam told reporters here last evening.
Harad then conspired to kidnap Joshi and extort the money from his family, he said.
On September 29, Harad's five friends allegedly kidnapped Joshi in a car shortly before midnight from near the latter's house in Bhayander township here, he said.
They dumped Joshi at a dingy godown in Harad's cloth factory at Sonale village in Bhiwandi where the victim was not provided water and food, Kadam said.
After Joshi was abducted, his family complained to the police.
The local crime branch then started an investigation into the complaint and finally managed to trace the victim in the godown on Sunday night and rescued him, Kadam said.
The police found Joshi in a haggard condition. He could barely stand and appeared very weak, the official said.
The victim was rushed to a hospital and admitted for treatment, he said.
Subsequently, the police yesterday arrested Harad, his driver Avdoot Shelar (27), and his five friends who were allegedly involved in the kidnapping - Ramesh alias Anil Yadav (38), Mayuresh Mhatre (28), Yatish Desai (28), Pratamesh Walavalkar (27) and Varun Agrawal (32), he said.
They were booked under IPC sections 365 (kidnapping or abducting with intent secretly and wrongfully to confine a person), 344 (wrongful confinement for ten or more days) and 34 (acts done by several persons in furtherance of common intention), Kadam said.
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