Hospital staffer among two booked for robbing dead Covid-19 patients
Two people - a woman working at a hospital in Baner, and her friend - were arrested by the Pune police for stealing valuable belongings from as many as eight dead Covid-19 patients and their relatives.
The two arrested were identified as Anil Tukaram Sangme (35) a resident of Ganganagar in Rahatnigaon and Sharada Ashok Ambildhage (36) a resident of Rahatni. The woman worked as an aya in the hospital and Sangme is her friend and a bouncer by profession who helped her with the crime, according to the police.
“They are in police custody until June 1. The admin started receiving complaints and so, they checked the CCTV footage and found her picking valuables from the bodies. We have been able to recover only 3-gram gold so far. Rest we are working on,” said assistant police inspector Rajesh Malegave of Chaturshringi police station who is investigating the case.
A complaint in the matter was lodged by the administration worker at the hospital identified as Ajayshree Maskar (25), a resident of Baner.
After their arrest, the police have recovered gold jewellery and mobile phones worth ₹1, 34,000 from the duo, according to the police.
A case under Sections 381 and 34 of Indian Penal Code was registered at Chaturshringi police station.
The world is suffering from the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic. However, the ripple effects of the pandemic are felt in smaller parts of the world through acts of crime that only add to the feeling of loss felt by those who lose loved ones to the virus.
In May, the Pimpri-Chinchwad police have received at least five complaints of theft at the jumbo Covid centre in Pimpri.
In one case, Pravind Ambadas Sutar (48), a resident of Bhosari, lost his gold ornaments worth ₹21,400 while he was undergoing treatment in the Covid hospital in April.
In another case, Mahendra Phanse (51), a resident of Dhanori area of Pune, ldoged a complaint after his father-in-law succumbed to the virus at the facility on April 9. However, his belongings, including ID cards and ₹10,000 cash, were never returned to him.
The mother of Ranvir Thakur (31), a resident of Bibwewadi, Pune, died under treatment at the jumbo facility in Pimpri in the first week of May. However, the gold and silver ornaments on her person were never returned to him.
The series of thefts started getting reported after two complaints were lodged within a day. Among the two complaints, one was of Vaishnavi Jyotiba Khule (20), a resident of Pimple Nilakh, lost her uncle to the virus on May 1. His phone was never returned to the family. The second complaint was of Sagar Diwakar Gujar (35), a resident of Bopkhle, who lost his mother on April 19. However, her gold and silver ornaments worth more than ₹40,000 were never returned to the family.