Two teenagers were in love and had eloped due to family pressure and torture from their homes in Rajasthan. Three years later, the now-adult couple was traced by the CBI in a remote village in Tripura where they were making a living doing menial jobs.
The two were brought to Rajasthan where a kidnapping case had been filed against the the then minor boy by the girl's family and was produced before the Rajasthan High Court.
However, the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) has ensured that the kidnapping case is quashed and both of them are safe and secure. The CBI has also told the court that the teenagers are now adults and can make their own decisions.
While producing the two before the Rajasthan High Court, the CBI pleaded to quash the FIR and provide safety and security to the couple.
The then minor girl and her boyfriend left their homes at Sadar in Rajasthan's Jhunjhunu district on November 22, 2016. The girl's parents registered a kidnapping case against the boy, who was also found to be missing, as per his friends and family members.
The girl's parents had also alleged theft of Rs 70,000. The Rajasthan Police registered a case against them and started the probe, but could not trace them. There was huge agitation by locals back then. The local police tried to trace them but were clueless about their whereabouts.
After two years, the Rajasthan High Court issued an order on November 11, 2018, to transfer the case to the CBI. The agency took up the case and re-registered an FIR on February 2, 2019.
"The case was transferred on the grounds that for a period of almost two years, the case remained with Rajasthan Police and till then neither was the minor girl recovered, nor the minor boy, the accused, was traced," said a senior CBI officer, adding that during initial probe it was found that the juveniles had eloped as they were in love.
"The case was blind and no trace/clue related to their whereabouts was available when the case was handed over to the CBI," said the officer.
The agency started visiting the homes of the missing person's relatives and friends across five states. It tried to trace them in Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh, Delhi and Punjab, but they were untraceable.
"During scrutiny of documents collected from Rajasthan Police/banks and call details analysis related to the victim and the accused's friends, we finally got the tip-off of a phone number based in Tripura. It was unusual," said the officer.
After following the lead, the CBI traced the two to Khayerpur village at Bodhjang near Agartala in Tripura last month.
"When they realised that they have been traced, they started talking about taking extreme steps. We counselled them and when they got convinced, they came along with us" said the officer, adding that the girl was kept at the Nari Niketan in Delhi and the boy was produced before the Rajasthan High Court and was granted bail.
During the investigation, it was revealed that the girl was not kidnapped. She left her home on her own will as she was in love with the boy.
"The allegation of theft of Rs 70,000 was also negated during the investigation," added the officer.