A bunch of obsolete CCTV cameras at Chandigarh railway station has become a major handicap for the UT Police force which is investigating the disappearence of a 15-year-old girl who went missing earlier this week.
The girl, Sugandhi Gaur, a resident of Naya Gaon, has been missing from Sector 15 market since September 26.
Sources said that the police so far have been able to establish that the girl had traveled from Sector 15 market to Chandigarh railway station in an autorickshaw. Her movements were established through CCTV cameras installed in Sector 15 market and with the help of human intelligence. However, so far, the police have been drawing a blank as to what happened once she reached the station as the CCTV cameras there were not capable of recording and storing footage.
As per the police, at least 35 CCTV cameras had been installed at the railway station in 2015, but none of them were equipped to record and store footage. A special CCTV camera room is situated near the police post of Railway Protection Force (RPF) at the Chandigarh station. As per details, the cameras stopped recording and storing footage way back in 2016 and were at present being used to only monitor the station and its premises in realtime.
Ajay Gauri, the father of the missing girl Sugandhi, told The Indian Express, “After Chandigarh Police informed me about my daughter having last been spotted going to the railway station, I rushed to the station along with two police personnel on Wednesday. But my all the hopes were dashed, when the railway police personnel there told us that the cameras cannot record things. I am still frequenting the station, hoping somebody gives me a clue about my daughter. I have lodged a complaint at the Sector 11 police station.”
Sources said that the auto driver, who had dropped the girl at railway station, has been traced and he is cooperating with the family and the police in the probe.
Chandigarh station superintendent, JP Singh, said, “We have been in the process of installing new CCTV cameras at the station. A contract worth around Rs 1.50 crore has been awarded for the job. At least 132 new cameras will be installed”. Sources said earlier, the railway station was under the care of Indian Railway Stations Development Corporation (IRSDC). After IRSDC being disbanded, the station was handed back to the Ambala Railway Division.
According to the police, the missing girl had at least four Instagram accounts and she had deleted all her chats from her accounts. She used to access the Internet on her mobile phone through a Wifi and did not use a SIM card.