Railway cops keep watch on Diwali gangs targeting travellers in Mumbai
The railway crime branch is stepping up its game this Diwali season, a time that sees gangs from across Maharashtra and neighbouring states make their way to Mumbai to target the festive season travellermumbai Updated: Oct 24, 2016 10:56 IST
The railway crime branch is stepping up its game this Diwali season, a time that sees gangs from across Maharashtra and other states make their way to Mumbai to target the festive season traveller.
According to the railway police, most of these gangs come from states like Haryana, Bihar, Uttar Pradesh and from places inside the state, such as Solapur. They stay in Mumbai for a fortnight, constantly changing their location. They travel to Mumbai in groups of five or six, stay in lodges where they are not asked for an identity proof and target passengers at the city’s six long-distance terminals.
“They move from one lodge to another after a crime so that it becomes hard to track them. They commit several thefts and go back home with substantial booty. We have caught groups like these several times in the past,” said a railway crime branch officer.
Investigators said the groups mostly strike at terminals, where passengers carry lot a of luggage — unlike at suburban stations, where they can only pickpocket or snatch chains. “Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus, LTT, Thane, Kalyan, Mumbai Central and Bandra see a lot of passengers coming in from outside. We will post special teams there and spread awareness among waiting passengers through announcements,” the officer said.
The Government Railway Police (GRP) has externed more than 30 habitual criminals — those with two or more convictions — in the past two months itself. While the number of robbery cases has dropped, the police are expecting prohibitory action to act as a deterrent for groups who come from other states. The railway crime branch is also set to start two new units at Diva and Vashi this Diwali. The wing has 80 personnel and has units currently at CST, Thane, Kalyan, Wadala, Bandra and Vasai stations.
WhatsApp helpline for women: 9833312222
Government Railway Police: 9833331111
Railway Protection Force national helpline: 182/138
Mumbai Police Control Room: 100
GRP commissioner: 022 – 23759251
First Published: Oct 24, 2016 09:48 IST