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Delhi car thieves busted after 18-hour stakeout, one killed in encounter

Police said the duo, who are suspected car thieves, attempted to get away in a stolen Fortuner SUV on Tuesday morning when authorities spotted them and gave chase.

delhi Updated: Jun 05, 2018 22:51 IST
Karn Pratap Singh
Karn Pratap Singh
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
Delhi Police,Fortuner SUV,Vivek Vihar
A policeman checks the stolen Fortuner SUV in which two men attempted to make a getaway after Delhi Police engaged them, at Jhilmil colony in Vivek Vihar, on Tuesday.(Sanchit Khanna/HT Photo)

Sunday-night car theft went horribly wrong for the three men involved. They managed to get away with the vehicle on Sunday, even changed its number plate, and left it parked outside an East Delhi hospital. In the early hours of Tuesday, they came back in another vehicle to pick up the stolen SUV, but found the police waiting for them, thanks to the GPS in the stolen vehicle.

Delhi Police shot dead one of the three men when he tried to flee in the Toyota Fortuner Sports Utility Vehicle. Another was arrested, while their associate managed to flee after firing at the police team.

Police said the three men came to the ESI hospital in East Delhi’s Jhilmil Colony in a white Maruti Brezza to collect the white Fortuner SUV they had parked outside the hospital. The three has stolen the Fortuner on Sunday night from outer Delhi’s Mianwali Nagar and changed its number plate before bringing it to the hospital parking lot.

Deputy commissioner of police (Shahdara) Nupur Prasad said Noor Mohammad (45), the man who died, was trying to escape in the Fortuner and attempted to run over a police officer when he was ordered to stop. Police fired four bullets, one of which hit Noor, a resident of Jaipur, Rajasthan, in the chest. He was rushed to the nearby hospital, where he was declared brought dead.

Explaining the sequence of events, DCP Prasad said that on Monday morning, the Vivek Vihar police station was informed by outer Delhi’s Mianwali Nagar police about a stolen SUV. The car’s owner had traced it to Jhilmil Colony through the vehicle’s Global Positioning System .

“We located the SUV and found it parked at the back of the ESI Hospital. The vehicle’s original Haryana registration number plate had been replaced with a fake Delhi registration number plate,” said Prasad.

The officer said that seven police officers wearing plain clothes staked out the place from 9 am on Monday. After around 18 hours, according to the DCP, at around 3 am on Tuesday, the police team spotted a Brezza car. “Two men came out and walked towards the stolen Fortuner. One of them sat on the driver’s seat; while the other was getting in from the front passenger-side door, our policemen overpowered him. The man behind the wheels of the Brezza fired at the team and fled towards Yamuna Sports Complex in the car,”?a senior police officer said.

Finding himself in trouble and surrounded by the police team, the Fortuner driver, later identified as Noor, attempted to run the vehicle over the police and make off. A police officer fired four bullets, one of which hit Noor.

He lost control of the vehicle after around 100 meters, and it crashed into the ESI Hospital’s boundary wall after climbing the pavement. The police team chasing the car found the driver with a bullet injury on the left side of his chest.

Noor was rushed to Guru Teg Bahadur Hospital, where he was declared brought dead. Ravi alias Kuldeep, who was caught by the police team, was arrested. The identity of the third man, who is currently absconding, was not revealed.

Initial investigations revealed that Noor was previously involved in a criminal case in Jaipur. Police are interrogating Ravi to identify other members of the gang.

“We have informed Noor’s family members about his death. The autopsy will be conducted once they reach Delhi and claim his body,” Prasad said.

First Published: Jun 05, 2018 15:14 IST