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You are being watched

Our fourth story in the 9-part Navratri series deals with the rise in recruitment of detective services in the city during festival time.

entertainment Updated: Oct 11, 2010 14:37 IST
Collin Rodrigues

Private detective services see a sharp rise in business during the nine days of Navratri. The agencies report a drastic growth in the number of people who approach them to keep a close eye on their near and dear ones. Says Utpal Chaudhri of Lotus Detective Agency, Andheri, “People these days are getting increasingly suspicious of their partners or children. We receive about 20 per cent more cases during Navratri.”

Another reason that people approach them is because of terrorism and the scare of bomb blasts. “There are many parents who feel there could be an act of terrorism during a


performance. They want their kids to be safe in such an eventuality,” adds Utpal. But a major chunk of the cases deals with cheating partners.


performances are an ideal ground for cheating.

Cheating partners

“Firstly, it’s nighttime, and people can always come with justifications for staying out late. In such a scenario, a private eye is the only help at hand,” adds Utpal. “Last year, we had a husband who wanted us to keep an eye on his wife who would come home late after


. We followed her and her partner to a Juhu hotel. Soon her husband was knocking on her hotel door,” recounts Utpal. His detective agency also came across a case where a girl and her cheating partner would go all the way to a Lonavala hotel on the pretext of going to a




There are some agencies where worrying parents seem to be the only clients. Says RR Mishra of United Detective India, “Most of our clients are people who want their children safe from prowling eyes. Many men come to

dandiya mandals

with the sole intention of wooing girls and very often girls fall of them. Our job is to inform parents about such incidents.”

Detective agencies charge between Rs 50,000 to a lakh for nine days of service. The prices depend on the distance that needs to be covered chasing the subject. Chasing from Colaba to Goregaon costs the maximum of up to a lakh. Because for a stretch this long, there could be three or four people and two to three cars following a single person. “By changing officers and cars, we ensure the person being followed doesn’t get suspicious even if he comes and talks to us,” asserts Mishra.