Vehicle thieves play Games field | delhi | Hindustan Times
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Vehicle thieves play Games field

On Saturday, even as Delhi Police Chief YS Dadwal patted the backs of his men for pulling off the Commonwealth Games without a hitch, he conveniently forgot to mention was that even though 50,000 men were manning every part of the city, they were not able to rein in the capital's vehicle thieves. Karan Choudhury reports.

delhi Updated: Oct 17, 2010 23:32 IST
Karan Choudhury

They are damned if they do and damned if they don't.

On Saturday, even as Delhi Police Chief YS Dadwal patted the backs of his men for pulling off the Commonwealth Games without a hitch, he conveniently forgot to mention was that even though 50,000 men were manning every part of the city, they were not able to rein in the capital's vehicle thieves.

As many as 1,200 vehicles were stolen during the period the Games were on. According to Delhi Police records, 1,162 vehicles were stolen between October 1 and 15 — the period during which there was maximum security in the city.

The police said 167 vehicles were stolen from East Delhi, the area that also houses the Games Village.

However, the top brass of the Delhi Police continue to claim that the city was safe and secure and that even the number of vehicle thefts went down.

"Last year, around this time, about 1,300 vehicles were stolen. This the figure has gone down this year. However, our main priority was to protect the city from terror attacks and ensure that the Games were conducted smoothly," said a senior police officer on condition of anonymity, as he is not authorised to speak to the media.

The Delhi Police also claim that they caught a number of car thieves before the Games commenced.

"We have put behind bars more than 30 vehicle thieves and decimated a number of auto theft gangs, in our crackdown before the Games. We rounded up a number of proclaimed offenders as well. However, we just cannot prevent thefts, as everyday, new gangs come up," added the officer.

Theft capital
Number of vehicles stolen from various areas:
South Delhi: 114
West Delhi: 172
North Delhi: 60
Northeast Delhi: 115
New Delhi District: 13