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89 cars stolen, just 8 recovered

Sunday, 6 April 2014 - 7:34am IST | Place: Mumbai | Agency: DNA

As many as 89 cars and some heavy vehicles have been stolen from Navi Mumbai in the first three months of 2014. The police have been able to recover only 8 of the stolen cars so far.

According to sources from Navi Mumbai crime branch, the total number of stolen vehicles, including the two-wheelers, between January and March, is 179. When it comes to the recovery of two-wheelers, the number stands at 19.

As far as the thefts of four-wheelers are concerned, March saw the highest number of cases. 45 cars and heavy vehicles were stolen from various parts of the city in March, as opposed to 44 vehicles stolen in previous two months.

The police, however, recovered the highest number of two-wheelers last month. The Kalamboli police arrested three minors for their alleged involvement in some burglaries (when?). It was later revealed that they had also stolen several vehicles from the town. The police recovered eight stolen two-wheelers from their possession afterwards. With these, the total number of recovered two-wheelers in March went up to 15.

If sources from the police department are to be believed, a majority of the four-wheelers that were stolen from the city in last couple of months, are sports utility vehicles (SUV). It is suspected that these vehicles are being taken to other states like Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Madhya Pradesh, Karnataka and Goa for using them in the upcoming elections.
KL Prasad, police commissioner of Navi Mumbai said, "We are doing our best to prevent such crimes, but the residents should also remain alert for ensuring safety of their vehicles. It is the hightime for the residents to take care of their vehicles, as number of vehicle theft cases go up during every elections in the state. If sources are to be belived, there is also a nexus between certian politicians and these vehicle thieves."

"People now spend lakhs of rupees for purchasing a new car, but when it comes to the safety of that car, they wait for the police to protect it. They hesitate even to spend a few thousands of rupees for installing proper locks and GPRS system in their cars," he added.

The police suspects, a gang of six to twelve persons are involved in stealing a car and they execute the theft with much planning. A majority of the recovered vehicles in 2013, were found either in the remote interiors of Maharashtra or in the neighbouring states.

At times, the stolen vehicles are also used by the culprits in criminal activities like chain snatching and robberies.

"The obvious reason behind using such vehicles is that the culprits would not be in trouble even if the police nab the vehicles. This apart, there is also a possibility of misleading the investigation, as the vehicles are registered in their owners' name and hence there is no chance of reaching the culprits through their registration numbers," another senior police officer said.
"More than 50% of the housing societies in Navi Mumbai don't have parking lots in their society compounds and the residents park their vehicles on roads. I think, this is biggest problem in terms of curbing the menace of vehicle theft in the city. Residents should also take preventive measures for protecting their cars," said Shrikant Pathak, deputy commissioner of police (crime).
"In 2013 only 85 vehicles were stolen from the secured places. Only one vehicle fitted with GPRS system was stolen and that was recovered within a short span of time. We are now monitoring all major roads to ensure that the thieves cannot run away with the stolen cars from the city," he added.

As many as 690 vehicles were stolen from Navi Mumbai in 2013 and the police failed to recovered more than 70% of them.

Month............two-wheeler-stolen/recovered...........four wheeler-stolen/recovered
January.........................32/3...............................................24/2
February........................25/1...............................................20/1
March............................33/15.............................................45/5


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