Greater Noida gang rape punctures cops’ claims of crime-free Yamuna Expressway
Despite initiatives to clamp down on highway robbers, such cases of waylaying of vehicles and alleged gang rapes and robberies in and around a 40-kilometre stretch of the Yamuna expressway have not stopped.noida Updated: Jul 05, 2017 10:18 IST
The alleged gang rape of four women and the murder of a man in Greater Noida’s Jewar has put a question mark on the efficacy of police while dealing with highway robberies.
The family from Jewar was heading to a private hospital in Bulandshahr with Rs 47,500 cash where the deceased man’s sister was due for a caesarean delivery when the robbers struck.
Despite initiatives to clamp down on highway robbers, such cases of waylaying of vehicles and alleged gang rapes and robberies in and around a 40-kilometre stretch of the Yamuna expressway have not stopped.
After two horrific crimes that hit the headlines -- the July 2016 Bulandshahr gang rape, when a mother-daughter duo was allegedly gang raped by a group of robbers, and the Rabupura brick kiln incident in November 2016, where armed men allegedly gang raped three women -- police took some measures to clamp down on such highway gangs.
Forty-two robberies were registered in 2016 along the 40-km stretch of the Yamuna expressway. To keep tab on such gangs, the police had assigned 25 informers in four villages -- Sawota Mustafabad, Dudhera, Begumabad and Alawalpur -- located along the expressway.
As these gangs usually set up base in these hamlets before any robbery, the presence of informers to alert them ensured police were a step ahead of the gangs.
The tactic seemed to have paid off to some extent and in January and February, not a single robbery was registered.
Commuters using the expressway were given a list of dos and don’ts while travelling on the expressway. Among other advisories, the police had asked commuters not to stop vehicles immediately in case of tyre burst and keep on driving for one to two kilometres, and call cops for assistance.
Former superintendent of Police (rural) Sujata Singh had distributed pamphlets at the Jewar toll plaza and other junctions warning people against the ‘axle gang’, which deflated tyres of vehicles by throwing sharp objects on the road and then attacked commuters.
But Thursday’s incident near Jewar has once again put the spotlight on highway robbers and the measures adopted by police to stop them.
Last year, during the Bulandshahr gang rape case, the ‘Bawariya’ gang had attained notoriety due to their modus operandi.
Senior superintendent of police Love Kumar said all angles were being probed in the Jewar ‘gang rape’ and police would increase their patrolling in the area.
“We are probing the incident from both angles of personal vendetta and highway robberies. We are continuously warning commuters using the Jewar toll plaza. This incident happened on a link road but it doesn’t negate the threat of robberies on the Yamuna expressway stretch,” said Love Kumar.