For the past four years, Atma Singh, 43, along with two friends, used to travel from Bharatpur in Rajasthan to Delhi to steal vehicles.
The three would board a bus during the night and reach Delhi around 3am. Before sunrise, the trio would steal a luxury car each and drive back to Bharatpur.
This was the modus operandi that Singh and his friends adopted to allegedly commit several vehicle thefts in Delhi. The trio used to visit the city twice a month.
Singh was arrested from the Hari Nagar area of west Delhi on Thursday when he was trying to steal a Santro car.
“He was apprehended during routine checking. While his other two accomplices managed to flee, we could nab Singh,” said a senior police officer.
During interrogation, Singh disclosed his modus operandi.
“After having dinner at their native town, the trio would board a bus for Delhi. They would get down at Dhaulakuan around 2 am and visit areas in west Delhi. Within few hours, each of them would steal a car and return to Bharatpur in the same vehicle,” he said. The gang used to dispose of the stolen cars in Bharatpur.
“They left Delhi in the wee hours as there is hardly any police presence in the city or on borders at that time. Singh confessed during interrogation that while returning in the stolen car, he was never stopped for checking,” the officer said.
Police sources said nearly 40 cases of vehicle thefts were reported in the city everyday, which constitutes about 15% of all crimes committed in Delhi.