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Man steals 500m cable from Delhi Metro site with crane, finds no buyers, caught

As the roll of wire clearly came across as government property, contractors and scrap dealers were allegedly unwilling to buy it from Ashwini Kumar though he offered to sell it for a much cheaper price than its actual worth of Rs 10 lakh, police said

delhi Updated: Dec 16, 2017 13:12 IST
Shiv Sunny
Shiv Sunny
Hindustam Times
Delhi theft,Cables stolen,500m cables
The theft took place at the metro construction site on December 2 and the accused allegedly hired a crane to transport the roll of wire, the police said. (Photo: Sourced)

A 37-year-old man, working as a labour supervisor for a private contractor engaged with a power discom, allegedly stole a 4,400 kilo roll of electric cable from Jamia Millia Islamia in south Delhi, police said on Friday.

The theft took place at the metro construction site on December 2 and the accused allegedly hired a crane to transport the roll of wire, the police added.

But, since the roll of wire clearly came across as government property, contractors and scrap dealers were allegedly unwilling to buy it from him even though he offered to sell it for a much cheaper price than its actual worth of Rs 10 lakh, police said. This delay allowed the police enough time to scan the CCTV footage and come to the conclusion that a hydra crane, captured in one of the visuals, was used in the crime.

Ashwini Kumar in police custody. (Photo: Sourced)

A phone number printed on the crane was enough for us to reach the accused, Ashwini Kumar. He led us to the cable roll that he had kept in a forested area behind Batra Hospital,” said Chinmoy Biswal, deputy commissioner of police (south east).

Police found out that Kumar was earlier jailed in 2006 in Gurgaon for four years in connection with a murder and dacoity case registered there. He was later acquitted in that case. He was also booked in an attempt to murder case registered against him in Vasant Kunj a decade ago, but the DCP was unable to provide the current status of the case.

Kumar was currently employed as a labour supervisor by a private contractor who was engaged with a power distribution company in Delhi.

The roll of electric wire allegedly stolen by him was nearly 500 metres long, said police. Seeing it lying at the metro construction site, Kumar allegedly planned to steal it. So, he hired a hydra crane and stole it late on the night of December 2, said the DCP.

While probing the theft, the police began scanning footage leading to the road. “Among many vehicles moving on that route was a hydra crane. The crane had passed by a point and then returned 30 minutes later,” said the DCP. That aroused the investigators’ curiosity and they zoomed in to the image to find a phone number even as the vehicle’s registration number was unclear. That brought the police in contact with the crane owner who told police that he had rented the vehicle to Kumar that night, DCP Biswal added.

“After stealing the cable, Kumar had tried to sell it to a contractor in Faridabad, but he allegedly refused to buy the government property fearing legal trouble. He then tried to sell the cable to scrap dealers, but failed there too. He finally decided to sell the stolen item to people outside Delhi when we caught him,” said the DCP.

First Published: Dec 16, 2017 13:08 IST