When Douglas L came to Delhi this time, he had a Rolex on his wrist. Two weeks later, he is struggling to find it. While travelling in an auto from GK Enclave to Kailash Colony last Wednesday, the 45-year-old publisher from south China had slipped it into his pocket. That was the last time he saw it.
He has now announced a reward of Rs 50,000 to the finder which, he said, can go up to Rs 1 lakh. He also reported the matter to the police and has already put in an advertisement in the papers. Douglas hopes to get some response at least from the posters pasted near Kailash Colony Metro Station.
A driver of the taxi he usually hires also helped him stick posters carrying his watch’s photo on autorickshaws. He has even explored the CCTV footage captured by a neighbour’s camera. That the watch was worth Rs 5 lakh is not the only reason why he is so desperate to get it back. “It was a gift from my wife. She will be really upset,” he said.
After 15 years of marriage, his wife had gifted him the ultra luxury watch last month. Douglas said she spent her own savings and bought him the Rolex Greenwich watch in Hong Kong.
“There was no special occasion. She just wanted to do it for me. Even though buying a Rolex is not easy, she got it for its value and that it can show the time at two places. I travel a lot,” he said.
In a city where at least 1,700 items are reported lost every day, Douglas hopes he may just get lucky.
“My daughter had lost her dog last year. So we had put up posters in the neighbourhood and within four days, somebody brought the dog back to us. May be something like that can happen here too. I am just trying my luck,” he said.
Douglas has received only one call since the advertisement appeared in the papers on Saturday. “That too was just a boy fooling around,” he added.
Douglas visits India at least thrice a year for business. He stays at a rented house in GK Enclave every time and uses public transport to go around the city.
“I was going to meet a friend on March 18. Since there was no taxi that day, I hopped into an auto to go to the Metro station. I removed the watch and kept it in the left pocket of my trouser. It was only after going through the security check at the station that I realized my watch was gone,” he remembered.
“I always wore a Seiko on my previous trips,” he added.He hopes to recover the watch before he goes back to China in the first week of April.
He likes Delhi for its food and people and doesn’t want to give up before trying all options. He simply brushed aside any suggestion of buying a similar watch to wriggle out of the situation.
“I will tell her as soon as I get back home. I hope she will excuse me with time,” he said.