Shabana (22) and Sanjo (30) are sisters who hail from Rajgarh in Madhya Pradesh. They were well dressed, spoke impeccable English and often had no difficulties in mingling with crowds and befriending people using their communication skills.
Little did people know that the suave sisters were also thieves who posed as guests at weddings, generally being hosted at five-star hotels, and decamped with wedding jewellery and cash at the first opportune moment.
The duo, however, ran out of luck on Saturday when they walked into a trap and were nabbed by the Delhi Police, along with their aide Altaf (28), an auto rickshaw driver, from Uttam Nagar.
Police said the sisters were involved in at least four incidents of thefts and had decamped with cash and jewellery from various weddings to date.
The arrests came after a theft at a five-star hotel in Lutyens’ zone on January 31. A businessman approached the police and complained that a bag of jewellery, cash and 24 silver coins were stolen from his daughter’s wedding, which was held on January 29. Following his complaint, a case was registered and CCTV footage of the hotel scanned.
“In the footage, the two women dressed in smart clothes were seen moving around comfortably in the crowd and talking to all the family members. Around 11:30pm, when the bride was about to sit for the pheras (rituals) and the host was busy attending to guests, one of them is spotted picking up the jewellery bag and swiftly sneaking out,” BK Singh, DCP (New Delhi), said.
The police then zeroed down on the women and e identified them with the help of the CCTV footage. It was found that the women belonged to Madhya Pradesh’s Rajgarh. Further information regarding the accused was then developed using local intelligence and it was found that they had been involved in such thefts earlier too.
“It was found that they had carried out thefts in a hotel in New Delhi district and five other star hotels in the past. Through technical surveillance, we then found that they would be visiting Uttam Nagar, in west Delhi to meet an associate on February 10. Following the tip off, a team was sent to the area and a trap was laid. The women and their associate were arrested from the spot,” Singh said.
During questioning the women revealed that they used to visit Delhi and NCR only during the wedding season and used to go to functions at five stars to commit thefts. “The women went inside, identified their targets and committed the thefts, while Altaf used to wait for them outside the hotel in an auto in which they made their escape,” Singh said.