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Thursday, Sep 19, 2019

Manpower shortage hurts policing in Gurgaon

Though CM Khattar had promised 1,000 more police personnel in Gurgaon, several vacant police posts are yet to be filled up

gurgaon Updated: Dec 25, 2017 23:39 IST
Abhishek Behl
Abhishek Behl
Hindustan Times
In one of the most sensational crimes to hit Gurgaon this year, gold worth ₹10 crore was stolen from a Manappuram branch on Railway Road. With the help of CCTV footage and local intelligence, the police caught the accused with the loot.
In one of the most sensational crimes to hit Gurgaon this year, gold worth ₹10 crore was stolen from a Manappuram branch on Railway Road. With the help of CCTV footage and local intelligence, the police caught the accused with the loot.(Parveen Kumar/HT FILE)

 A steep rise in cyber crime, vehicle thefts and cases of burglary kept the Gurgaon police on its toes this year, as criminals using technology and operating in gangs, robbed people.

Crimes related to online banking frauds, skimming of credit and debit cards, fake call centres hit the citizens hard this year, with 2,792 cases registered by the police till December 15 as compared to 2,402 registered in 2016.

The recall of large currency notes or demonetisation and the Centre’s steady push thereafter towards a less cash economy and digital currency led to a spurt in cases of financial and online fraud, the police said. To counter cyber criminals, the city police has now set up an independent cyber police station which will be functional next year.

“This (cyber police station) will help us to prevent such crimes. More resources at our disposal will go a long way in checking cyber crime,” Sandeep Khirwar, Gurgaon police commissioner, said.

However, a major challenge that the police has not been able to tackle is rising incidents of vehicle theft. These include theft of bikes, cars, car side mirrors and tyres. In 2016, the police registered 3,649 cases of vehicle theft, while this year, they has already registered 4,037 such cases. Despite rounding up several gangs of vehicle and bike lifters, the police haven’t been able to put a leash on such incidents.

Police said that porous borders, close proximity of Gurgaon to neighbouring districts and lack of adequate manpower are the reasons for the spike in cases of vehicle theft.

“Earlier, criminals from Mewat and other parts of NCR were involved in such cases, but now we are more concerned about the involvement of youth from Rewari, Jhajjar, Rohtak and Bahadurgarh,” said a police officer, who investigated the killing of car lifter Aakash alias Lucky in Ravi Nagar.

Read I Gurgaon: Cops from northeast to tackle rising crimes against people from the region

Thieves in Gurgaon also gave a tough time to the men in uniform this year, with 1,571 cases registered by the police against 1,219 in 2016. Patrolling by police personnel, installation of CCTV cameras and hiring private security guards in gated condominiums have failed to thwart criminals. Apart from simple thefts, the city was also rattled by gangs that broke car windows and stole laptop bags, phones and other valuables.

As far as heinous crimes such as murders, attempt to murders and assaults were concerned, the numbers were marginally less compared to last year. The number of murder cases registered till December 15 is 106, up marginally from 104 in 2016.

Lack of manpower has also handicapped the city police. Despite promises by Haryana CM ML Khattar and DGP BS Sandhu that around 1,000 more personnel will be recruited, the city police has remained short-staffed.

“We are very hopeful that the new recruits will join Gurgaon police soon and will take up vacant posts in traffic and other branches. This will help us improve our overall policing,” Khirwar had been quoted as saying earlier.

Efforts were also made to curb gang operations from inside jails. “We have curbed gang wars and most criminals are behind bars. Also, the police managed to arrest the gang responsible for some of the most heinous crimes,” Sumit Kuhar, DCP (crime), Gurgaon, said. He was referring to the arrest of the Axle gang which has confessed to multiple rapes and robberies, including the Mandpura gang rape, Dhingarheri gang rape and murder and gangrape and murder in Jewar, Greater Noida.

The Gurgaon crime branch also etched some major successes in 2017, which included cracking the Mannapuram gold heist case in which a gang had managed to steal gold worth ₹10 crore from a branch on Railway road. With the help of CCTV footage and local intelligence, the police caught the accused along with the loot. The arrest of Satish alias Kale, a hardcore criminal who was involved in over 30 criminal cases including murder, was another success for the city police. It also managed to arrest Hemant, who was involved in the murder of former Najafgarh MLA Bharat Singh.

First Published: Dec 25, 2017 23:39 IST