The police said that the Yamuna Expressway, which is a hotbed of crime, has witnessed zero robberies since the start of 2017. The Uttar Pradesh police claim they have come up with strategies to counter the increasing number robberies on the expressway.
Across the 40 kilometres of Yamuna Expressway, from Pari Chowk to Jewar Toll Plaza in Greater Noida, there was a spate of robberies till December 2016. The police said that cases were frequently registered at the four police stations in the vicinity — Ecotech-1, Dankaur, Rabupura and Jewar.
According to the police, as many as 42 robberies took place on the 40km stretch in 2016. Two inspectors from police stations in Jewar and Tappal in Aligarh were suspended last December after senior officers found a lapse in policing. As many as 21 cases were registered at the Jewar police station, officials said.
The police said that zero incidents have been reported this year as they have placed their informers in villages along the expressway, in Sabota Mustfabad, Dudhera, Begumabad, Alawalpur, fearing an increase in crimes.
The police said they adopted the old technique of deploying informers as they would inform the police about suspected criminals and their allied activities, by which they can prevent crimes. Police sources said that informers have been taken on board in view of their rich social circle. Sources said that informers interact with several people to know if any plans are afoot and tip the police off.
Also, in several instances, dacoits were staying at several villages and made these hamlets their base of operations. The police said that they have around 25 informers to keep them updated and prevent crimes.
“Over the last one month, three robbery bids were foiled. The informers are local villagers and work as our eyes and ears. They have the phone numbers of beat officers and immediately contact them. We do lend them a little monetary support and it prevents many people from becoming targets,” a police officer said.
In another strategy to check robbery attempts, the police said they have added 10 control room vans to their existing fleet of six over the last two weeks. Around 80 personnel patrol the highway in these vehicles, the police said.
Earlier, the patrolling vans would show their presence on the Yamuna Expressway, however, now, they move along the service roads and are stationed at dark and secluded spots, the police said.
On November 3, 2016, armed robbers struck at the house of brick kiln workers in a village along the Yamuna Expressway, in Greater Noida, and gang-raped three women and made off with jewellery and cash. The incident had caused an uproar in the area.
A senior officer said that the junior officers are also responsible for changing the strategies. The suspensions last year has jerked all officials into action, sources said.
The superintendent of police, Sujata Singh (rural) Gautam Budh Nagar, said, “In this year, we have not had any case of robbery on the 40km stretch under the Greater Noida jurisdiction so far. To keep this surface link free from criminal activities, we have to adopt all possible strategies to ensure public safety.”
She also credited the Dial-100 initiative for the reduction in crime. “Now there is a heavy deployment of police personnel on the route and the Dial 100 is proving a help,” she said.