The Delhi Police have suspended a head constable who was allegedly caught accepting an unidentified object from a gang of women pickpockets on CCTV at the Chawri Bazar Metro station.
The Hindustan Times had reported the story on December 24 along with the exclusive CCTV footage in which the cop could be seen putting in his pocket something that one of the gang members handed him.
The gang was later arrested on the complaint of a US-based woman who had reported the theft of his jewellery and other valuables while travelling to Gurgaon in the Metro. The thieves were identified in a selfie that the woman clicked with her husband in the train. The selfie showed two women standing around them. When the CISF searched the CCTV footage on the route, it showed that the women were part of a six-member gang. And the same day they stole the jewellery, they were allegedly seen with the cop.
The police have launched a detailed inquiry to investigate, if there are more such cases. The police have also asked the Central Industrial Security Force (CISF), which guards the Metro premises, to provide more such footage, if any, to nail cops who might be helping or protecting pickpockets.
“The head constable has been identified based on the appearance in the footage. Though his face is not clear in the footage, we have identified him. He has been placed under suspension. A detailed inquiry has been ordered and more action will be taken if we find involvement of other staff too,” said a senior Delhi police official.
The six women pickpockets were arrested on December 13 and jewellery worth R 22 lakh was recovered from them.
In at least two clips, the pickpockets are seen handing over something to the constable, who is seen hurriedly putting what he was given in his pocket.
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Investigators from the Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) suspect collusion between the pickpockets and staff of the Delhi Police, but are hesitant to come on record. They also claim that there are many such clips and they have ‘verbally’ informed senior police officials.
“We have contacted CISF and have asked them to provide us more clippings. Action will be taken. We will also take statement of pickpockets,” the police officer added.
Explaining the incident, a CISF official said: “According to the complainant, an NRI couple, they boarded the train going towards Gurgaon around 2pm on December 9 from New Delhi Railway Station. They reached Chattarpur at 3pm and noticed that the zip of the woman’s bag was open.”
“They found that a small bag containing jewellery was missing. After receiving the complaint, we started scanning the footage to trace the movement of the gang. We noticed the gang with the Delhi Police official around 2pm at Chawri Bazar Metro station,” the official said.
Sources in the CISF said the further investigations revealed that the gang usually boarded the Metro at Kirti Nagar station on the Dwarka line. “On December 13, they came to the Chawri Bazar station and were nabbed. They confessed their involvement and helped us in recovering the stolen jewellery,” the official said.