Amar Colony snatchers leave cops befuddled

Rampant snatching cases reported in Delhi’s Amar Colony area have thrown police officials into a tizzy. One snatching incident is reported every second or third day in the South-east Delhi locality, revealed police records.

So far in 2015, as many as 48 cases of snatching were reported in the area, of which around 23 cases have been worked out by the police, said a police official on Monday.

Recently, around 12 cases in and around Amar Colony were solved with the arrest of a youth, a post graduate from Jamia Milia Islamia University. He reportedly took up snatching after losing his expensive mobile phone to a pickpocket, said the official.

“Usually snatchers work in groups but the 24-year-old postgraduate fellow worked solo. When he was arrested, he told the police that he was jobless. He had purchased an expensive phone, which was stolen. This incident, according to him, turned him into a snatcher,” said a police official.

Based on the information given by the boyfriend of a woman, whose handbag the youth had allegedly snatched, he was stopped at a picket and apprehended. The youth had allegedly been operating in Amar Colony, Lajpat Nagar and Defence Colony markets for around three months.

At Amar Colony, it is easier for snatchers to operate because there are a large number of open-ended lanes connected to the main roads. That is what snatchers primarily look for. There are not enough police officials available to place pickets – with at least two officials each – in all the lanes, the official added.

“To handle snatching cases, the south-east district police have constructed a team and they keep a watch in crime prone areas in civil dress,” said Mandeep Singh Randhawa, Deputy Commissioner of Police (South-east). He further explained, snatching (Section 379 IPC) doesn’t include chain-snatching, which is separately dealt with as robbery (Section 392 IPC).

After the Jamia-youth, the police also busted a gang of snatchers, who operated in the same area and used to come from South-east Delhi’s Madanpur Khadar locality. 

Around 16 cases in the South-east Delhi district were solved after their arrest. This was followed by cracking the whip on another gang from North-west Delhi.

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