In the last three years, the conviction rate in the snatching cases in the city has risen from 61 per cent to 70 per cent. The cases in which the accused are acquitted, advocates say, either the police do not have enough evidence or they are not able to prove the charges in court.
Last year, the police had registered 195 cases of snatching, as against 176 in 2012 and 213 in 2011. This year, 63 cases have been reported until July-end. While the number of cases has decreased, the conviction rate has increased from 61.19 per cent in 2011, to 66.92 per cent in 2012 and 69.91 per cent in 2013.
Police officials say that due to the prevalence of CCTV cameras, solving the cases has become rather easy. They claim that there have been cases where the accused were easily identified because they were earlier arrested in similar cases.
The police have identified 43 people who have repeatedly been arrested in snatching cases. Many of them are habitual and have been arrested many times.Snatching cases are sometimes listed as robbery, with relevant sections added to the FIR. This is done when the victim is injured or any weapon is used in the crime.
The conviction rate of robbery cases is, however, only 54 per cent. In most of such cases, the police are only able to prove charges under Section 411 (possession of stolen property) of the IPC as the accused have their faces covered at the time of crime. A classic example is the Tanishq heist in Manimajra when jewellery and cash worth Rs 10 crore was robbed in 2011.