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HindustanTimes Sat,19 Apr 2014

Thieves cost Indians Rs. 35,000 cr in a decade

Sneha Agrawal and Mohit Sharma, Hindustan Times  New Delhi, May 26, 2013
First Published: 04:14 IST(26/5/2013) | Last Updated: 11:11 IST(26/5/2013)

Indians lost valuables worth Rs. 35,257 crore to thieves, robbers and cheats in the past 10 years, reveal statistics of the National Crime Records Bureau for 2002-2011.

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That is equivalent to the Delhi government’s annual budget or what it last year took to run the national rural employment guarantee scheme which benefited 4.8 crore households.

The national average for recovery was just about 20% ( Rs. 7,953 crore) of the value of the stolen goods which ranged from vehicles to electronic items. The success rate differed at the state level, with less than 5% in Delhi, Gujarat and Kerala to 12% in Maharashtra and 21.55% in West Bengal.

In Delhi, goods amounting to Rs. 3,538 crore were stolen between 2002 and 2011, but the worth of the recovered goods was only Rs. 145 crore.

Delhi Police officials insisted that they did lot better than what was indicated by the statistics. Police spokesman Rajan Bhagat said the comparison was unfair and illogical as the recovery rate is high for almost all items except stolen cars — which bring down the percentage.

The Capital’s large vehicular population translates into a high theft rate. In 2011, Delhi accounted for nearly 25% of all car thefts in the country. But only about 18% of them were recovered.

Punjab had the best track record in recovering stolen goods, restoring nearly 67% of the value of the stolen items to their owners. The worth of the stolen goods was R749 crore, while that of the recovered items was R505 crore. Tamil Nadu and Madhya Pradesh were second with a recovery rate of about 63% recovery, while Haryana and Uttar Pradesh followed next at 55%.

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