Daylight robbery, snatching in posh areas shame police
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Daylight robbery, snatching in posh areas shame police

While the septuagenarian wife of former Punjab MLA was robbed of gold ornaments by miscreants at her Sector 28 residence, a woman lost her gold chain to two motorcycle-borne snatchers in posh area of Sector 39.

chandigarh Updated: Aug 19, 2012 13:34 IST
Monica Sharma
Monica Sharma
Hindustan Times

In a poor reflection on the law and order in Chandigarh, two elderly women were targeted by miscreants and deprived of their gold ornaments on Saturday morning in areas considered secure.

While a senior citizen in her seventies, wife of a former Punjab MLA, was robbed of her gold bangles and earrings at knifepoint in her house in a posh area of Sector 28, the second elderly woman fell prey to two motorcycle-borne youths who escaped after snatching her gold chain in a VIP area of Sector 39 on early Saturday morning.

In the first case, two men rang the bell of former Punjab MLA Balwant Singh's house in Sector 28, a few metres away from the residence of local MP and union minister Pawan Kumar Bansal. As Singh's wife Charanjit Kaur answered, the duo said that her husband had sent for them to repair an electricity fault in the house.

Charanjit, who was all alone in the house since other family members were away to a wedding at that time, did not open the door and told them that no such fault had occurred. When she insisted that she would talk to her husband, the miscreants claimed that they had come to repair a fridge.

But as she again showed reluctance to let them in and asked them to wait outside till her husband arrived, they asked for water to drink. As Charanjit finally opened the door, the miscreants snatched her bangles at knifepoint. The woman, in order to escape their clutches, even willingly parted with her earrings. Later, the duo locked the woman in the kitchen and fled.

"I tried to avoid them but they finally succeeded. I was shocked when they robbed me of my gold ornaments," said a visibly traumatised Charanjit.

In the second incident, Kanta Katyal, in her late sixties, was taking a morning walk at around 6.30 am in Sector 39 when she was accosted by two motorcycle-borne youths. Even before she could understand what was happening, the two miscreants pushed her to the ground. As she fell and raised an alarm, they snatched a gold chain from her neck and sped away on their motorcycle from the area that houses many VIPs.

Interestingly, the spot where the crime occurred not only houses MLAs and other dignitaries from Punjab, who have armed guards stationed outside their official residences, but is also only a short distance from the area police station.

Also, at the time when the incident occurred, most VIPs are out for morning walks with their security guards in tow. In fact, a security guard posted outside a VIP's house called up police after the crime.

Kanta, a resident of Sector 39, said, "I had gone to take a stroll in the park when the incident happened. I could not even figure out for a few seconds what was going on."

Her family members said she always removed her gold jewellery before going for evening walks. But since she did not go for a stroll on Friday evening, she was wearing the gold chain on Saturday morning.

Question mark on VIP security

Police, who registered two cases regarding the crimes, maintained that there was no apparent connection between the two incidents.

However, the two broad daylight crimes have put a question mark on the efforts of Chandigarh Police in keeping the city secure. What is baffling is the escape of miscreants in both the cases from areas which are considered posh and thus under strict police surveillance.

The crimes have thus put a question mark on the security of VIPs putting up in the two areas, including ministers. The incidents indicate that criminals can strike in VIP areas at will and make good their escape. At least 10 women have fallen victims to chain-snatchers this year.

First Published: Aug 19, 2012 13:32 IST