176 ve­hi­cles stolen from city this year, po­lice re­cover only 44

Most stolen ve­hi­cles are used by ac­cused to com­mit crimes such as chain snatch­ing and rob­beries

Hindustan Times ST (Mumbai) - HT Navi Mumbai Live - - NAVI MUMBAI - Pranab Jy­oti Bhuyan pranab.bhuyan@hin­dus­tan­times.com

NAVI MUM­BAI: As many as 176 ve­hi­cles were stolen from dif­fer­ent parts of Navi Mum­bai be­tween Jan­uary and March this year of which the po­lice have re­cov­ered 44, said the po­lice.

Ac­cord­ing to an of­fi­cial from the Navi Mum­bai crime branch, of the 594 ve­hi­cles stolen from the satel­lite city in 2015, 142 were traced, while of the 654 ve­hi­cles stolen in 2014, 169 were found.

Most ve­hi­cle theft cases were re­ported at Nerul, Kharghar, Ra­bale, Pan­vel and Kopar Khairane this year, said the po­lice, adding that a ma­jor­ity of the stolen ve­hi­cles in­cluded two-wheelers.

While pre­sent­ing the an­nual crime re­ports in Jan­uary, Navi Mum­bai po­lice com­mis­sioner Prab­hat Ran­jan had said that en­sur­ing safety of ve­hi­cles and in­creas­ing de­tec­tion rate will be one of their pri­or­i­ties in 2016. How­ever, statis­tics re­veal that, on an av­er­age, two ve­hi­cles are be­ing stolen from the city ev­ery day.

Deputy com­mis­sioner of po­lice ( crime) Dilip Sawant said, “It is true that the de­tec­tion rate of ve­hi­cle theft cases is rel­a­tively lower. But we have left no stone un­turned to im­prove the sce­nario.”

Ac­cord­ing to Sawant, most of the thieves do not re­side in the city, but “come here, com­mit a crime and flee. If not ar­rested, they come again to com­mit an­other crime af­ter a few months”.

A ma­jor­ity of the re­cov­ered ve­hi­cles in 2015 were found ei­ther in re­mote in­te­rior re­gions of Ma­ha­rash­tra or in the neigh­bour­ing states, said the po­lice.

Ac­cord­ing to the po­lice, the stolen ve­hi­cles are also used in crimes such as chain snatch­ing and rob­beries.

An of­fi­cer from Vashi po­lice sta­tion said, “Blam­ing the po­lice for in­crease in such cases all the time is not jus­ti­fied. It has been ob­served that sev­eral peo­ple do not take any steps to pro­tect their ve­hi­cles. If some­one can spend lakhs of ru­pees on buy­ing a car, can’t he spend a few more thou­sands of ru­pees on in­stalling a GPRS sys­tem?”

“More than 50% of hous­ing so­ci­eties in the city do not have suf­fi­cient park­ing lots as per re­quire­ment. So, peo­ple park their ve­hi­cles on the road, and fall prey to ve­hi­cle thieves,” he added.

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