NEW DELHI: Days after former Delhi Police Commissoner BK Gupta became a victim of the notorious Thak Thak gang in north Delhi, former Rajya Sabha MP Chandan Mitra became their latest target, as they punctured his car tyre and stole his briefcase containing Rs 23,500 came and some important documents.
Mitra lodged a police complaint after realising that he had been robbed last Friday at Nizamuddin Bridge crossing in south east Delhi.
Surprisingly, in his complaint, Mitra stated that he has been the victim of such a case for the fifth time in three months.
The incident took place when the prominent journalist was going towards Noida from the Supreme Court in his car, along with his driver, in the afternoon.
When they reached around a fuel station near Nizamuddin Bridge crossing, the car got a flat tyre.
As the driver was busy replacing the tyre with the help of a mechanic, Mitra moved to the front seat. He then realised that his briefcase kept on the rear seat was missing.
After checking the vehicle and surrounding areas for his briefcase, Mitra approached Tilak Marg police station.
In his complaint, Mitra said that he heard no sounds whatsoever when the robbery took place.
The complaint was transferred to Sunlight Colony police station, after the jurisdiction was decided, and a case of theft was registered there.
The modus operandi is most frequently used by the Thak Thak gang, who first tail their target's vehicle, distract the attention of the driver to open the door and then flee with the valuables.
In a similar case in December 2017, a senior female journalist was robbed in the same way in south Delhi's Mehrauli, after her car's tyre was punctured and the criminals stole her bag, mobile phone and other valuables. The case is yet to be solved.
The gang had also targeted Yashwant Singh, a BJP MP from Uttar Pradesh, and stolen his bag containing Rs 2.30 lakh cash, two silver coins of 100 gm each, a pen worth Rs 80,000, his official letter pad and other routine documents.
On October 21, 2017, a woman had reported that her handbag containing Rs 55,000 cash, her cell phone, her ID and bank passbooks had been stolen from her car in south Delhi. Investigation, once again, revealed the involvement of Thak Thak gang.
These gangs usually target running cars on city roads, and distract the drivers either by knocking on their window, puncturing the car tyres, pouring oil under the car's hood at red lights or by committing/faking minor accidents.
One of the gang members usually lifts the bag or other valuables kept in the car, while the others distract the driver's attention.
The Delhi Police Crime Branch recently arrested Kanahiyan, reported to be the mastermind and kingpin of the gang.
However, in spite of his arrest, the gang remains unstoppable and cops remain clueless of the whereabout of most members.
Sources claim that over time, the gang had spread its tentacles to various parts of Delhi and other states, with both men and women involved in the crimes.
These gangs often target big and costly vehicles, as they often carry a large amount of cash and other valuables.
In 2016, Delhi Police reported that more than 4,000 cases of robbery were witnessed in the Capital, while over 2,000 cases took place last year.