Vigil for baby missing from Montgomery Co., Pa.
UPPER MERION TWP., Pa. - October 24, 2012 (WPVI) -- The reward for information leading to the safe return of a 10-month-old girl who went missing on Monday has increased to $50,000.
The reward is being offered by the Citizen's Crime Commission of the Delaware Valley, Upper Merion Township Police, the Montgomery County District Attorney's office and the Telugu Association of North America (TANA).
Investigators and police dogs wrapped up at the Marquis Apartment Wednesday night, but did not reveal if they found anything, while residents of the Marquis and across the world held vigils for little Saanvi Venna.
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Under a small gazebo in King of Prussia's Heuser Park, there was a large community praying for the 10-month-old girl.
"This is an unimaginable loss," said Vijaya Reddy, Saanvi's aunt. "We haven't recovered from anything. We can't even think about what is in the future for us."
More than 200 people lit candles and held a vigil for the baby girl who was kidnapped sometime Monday morning from her Marquis Apartment.
Family members stood with pictures of the child as they also prayed for her grandmother who was found murdered in the home and Saanvi's parents.
"There is no state to talk to us, they are crying, they are inconsolable," said Reddy.
Just hours before the vigil, Saanvi's father and mother were spotted with investigators at the scene circling an FBI bloodhound in the parking lot.
The dog caught a scent and took off on the property looking for clues in the kidnapping while residents like the father of an 11-month-old boy waited.
"I was shocked because I thought this would have happened yesterday maybe on the same day, but I think this is the third day now," said Nauman Quamar.
Day three and the case is making national and international headlines.
An Indian TV news crew has been covering the story and sending reports back to Southern India, the Venna family's home country.
"It's sad, it doesn't just affect the Indian community, it's everybody," said Arvind Aravindahn. "I've been working in King of Prussia for 23 years, and these kinds of things don't happen in King of Prussia."
And while you may not understand the words...know it's a prayer for the safe return of Saanvi.
There were vigils in four other states Wednesday night.
"Anyone who has any information, anything you might think is inconsequential, please come forward," pleads Vijava Reddy, the aunt of the missing baby.
Saanvi Venna was taken from her family's Upper Merion home at the Marquis Apartments on Monday, October 22, during the murder of her grandmother, Satyavathi Venna.
The body of 61-year-old Satyavathi Venna was found in an apartment in King of Prussia. She had been visiting her son and daughter-in-law and was home alone with the baby at the time.
On Wednesday police returned to the scene with three K-9 dogs. They descended a steep embankment behind the apartment building and searched a field and wooded area below.
"Obviously this is a very critical search and rescue operation, and we are hoping we find her alive and be able to reunite her with her family," said Montgomery County District Attorney Risa Ferman.
Investigators are hoping the baby is still alive. They are revealing very little information about the crime scene and the investigation itself, fearing that anything they say might put the baby in danger.
"At this time, all we want is everyone's support, and we just want the baby, and that's about it. We lost one person; he lost his mother already, and we hope he finds the baby," said Ram Reddy, the baby's uncle.
The missing child is said to be 2' 6" tall, weighs 21 pounds and may be wearing a white dress with pink flowers.
The Montgomery County District Attorney's Office is working with the FBI on what is now a dual investigation into Saanvi's disappearance and the murder of Satyavathi Venna.Authorities issued an Amber Alert Monday afternoon.
Anyone with information is asked to call the anonymous tip line at (215) 546-TIPS.
pennsylvania, homicide, missing children, montgomery county, local/state
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