Despite the beefing up of nakas by the Chandigarh Police to check “movement of criminals”, the number of snatching incidents in the city beautiful have been on the upswing. While last year the number of snatchings rose to 195 as compared to 176 in the year 2012, this January witnessed double the snatching incidents as compared to last January.
In January last, eight snatching cases were registered by the police. This January, the number swelled to 16, the majority of them being broad daylight snatchings committed mostly by minors.
Five cases each were registered in the southern sectors (Sector 31 onwards) and eastern sectors while six cases were registered in northern sectors. Most of the cases were reported after 6 pm and during the wee hours.
Five such cases were committed by a group of six juveniles who outsmarted the police by first looting an auto-rickshaw and snatching the auto driver’s mobile and money. The accused committed four more snatchings in the next two days and were arrested almost after a week.
This increase in snatching incidents comes when the Chandigarh Police and the traffic police officials are laying nakas on a daily basis. Thirty-two nakas are being set up by the police every day. All the Sub-Divisional Police Officers (SDPOs), Station House Officers (SHOs) and those in charge of police posts are deputed on nakas which are carried out in three shifts in the city.
Apart from the nakas set up by the police to check criminal activities, the traffic police and the Cheetah Squad also patrol the city the entire day.
However, UT Senior Superintendent of Police Sukhchain Singh Gill said, “It is just a phase when these cases have increased. We have increased the nakas because of which we have managed to control the spurt in snatching incidents. Of all, five cases of snatching registered in January were committed by one gang who robbed an auto-rickshaw first.”
He added, “If we consider total cases of robbery and snatching in January 2013 and 2014, the number was 20 last year and 24 this year. The cases have gone up but we have managed to nab the accused involved in nearly 10 cases this January.”
According to the SDPOs, out of six cases in north division of the city, four were solved by the police. In east division, two cases have been worked out and in the south division, three have been cracked.