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The distinctive white trousers, worn by one of the two young men who allegedly robbed a cash collection agent of Rs 3.5 lakh last week, helped the police track them down.
They had sped across narrow bylanes in Bhendi Bazaar on a scooter and the pillion rider had concealed the number plate with his legs. But, using CCTV footage, the cops managed to track them down.
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On March 11, accused Moin khan (20) and Azharuddin Shaikh (23) snatched a black bag from Suryakant Menkudale (45) in Dongri, as he was making rounds collecting cash to be deposited in a co-operative credit society. Locals chased the two men but they kept slipping in and out of narrow lanes before finally arriving at Khan’s home in a building in Bhendi Bazaar, the police said.
After Menkudale registered a complaint, the police scanned through footage from 40 CCTV cameras mounted in the area. An officer, who was part of the investigating team, said that the only leads they had were that the scooter was dark blue in colour and that Shaikh, who was riding the scooter, was wearing white trousers.
“The complainant had not seen the faces of the accused. The accused riding pillion was sitting with his legs folded across the rear number plate so it was not visible in CCTV cameras,” he said.
With the scooter moving at high speed and the quality of cameras in the lanes poor, the police could only make out the vehicle in blurs of movement. “We were tracking the location of the accused based on a list of young men in the area who may have committed the robbery. We tracked the accused along the route they took,” said Manoj Kumar Sharma, Deputy Commissioner of Police, Zone I.
The officer, who was part of the probe, said that as they followed the route that the accused had taken to Khan’s building, locals there reported spotting the scooter rider wearing white pants. Both men were caught at Khan’s home with the bag containing the money. “They had not decided what to do with the money. The accused had not planned that far ahead,” the officer said.
According to the police, Khan, the son of a businessman in Bhendi Bazaar and Shaikh, a scrap dealer, had been observing the complainant Menkudale for a long time as he made his daily rounds collecting money from local traders. “A week ago they decided to rob the complainant and made a note of his movements. They had also made an unsuccessful attempt to rob the complainant before succeeding on Saturday,” the officer said. The police seized the scooter which had been gifted to Khan by his mother last week.