Daylight robberies by biker gangs a regular occurrence in Uzan Bazaar
GUWAHATI: Some new gangs have become operative in Guwahati and robbery is what these gangs are resorting to.
In a recent incident of daylight robbery, a woman was robbed of cash worth Rs 1 lakh in the Uzan Bazar area of Guwahati on April 26, Friday. The robbery took place near Barowari, outside the State Bank of India (SBI) Chenikuthi branch. As the woman came out of the bank, two men riding on a motorcycle snatched the money off the woman. Both men had donned helmets to conceal their identity, informed eyewitnesses.
The victim alleged that the robbers snatched her bag which carried cash withdrawn from the bank along with some valuable documents. “They snatched the bag I was carrying in no time. It happened within seconds,” the woman complained.
While Latasil Police has registered a case and claims to have initiated investigation, the residents of Uzan Bazaar complain of daylight robbery being a regular affair in the area.
“Almost every day we hear about a similar robbery case. It is no longer safe to walk on the roads alone, especially if you’re carrying cash or any other valuables,” said a resident of the area.
In the same vein, Navin Sarma, a resident of the city said, “Robbers and chain-snatchers seem to be having a field day in Guwahati with the roads turning into deserted alleys during night hours. Lack of streetlights and police patrolling are to be blamed for the massive increase in numbers.”
In another incident of daylight robbery in the vicinity reported earlier this year, a red coloured Ford Ecosport car belonging to Guwahati-based entrepreneur, Atul Lahkar, was vandalized and robbed on the afternoon of February 12.
The victim had parked the car in front of Assam Textile Institute on GNB Road at around 2 PM and had gone to his restaurant, Heritage Khorika Café, which is located at the junction of Lamb Road and GNB Road. After finishing his work there, he returned to his car which had, in the meantime, been broken into by miscreants at around 4 PM.
In the car were two Canon cameras (Mark 2 and Mark 3), two professional lenses (70 mm-200 mm and 24 mm-120 mm) and memory cards. The value of the camera equipment is around Rs 5,50,000. Along with the equipment, a few important documents, ATM cards and his driving license were also taken by the miscreants who broke the left front window of the car and looted it.
Similar instances have also been reported in other parts of the city including Athgaon, Rehabari and Maligaon with Chandmari recording the highest number of robbery cases in 2018.
Robbery cases on the rise in city
Robbery attacks in the city have shot up by 75% in the last two years, indicate the latest statistics provided by the crime branch of Guwahati Police Commissionerate. Robbery cases have increased from 288 in 2016 to 406 in 2018 (data showcases the number of crimes reported from January 1 to November 30). This shows an increase of 218 robbery cases as against 2016. In 2017, a total of 335 cases of robbery were registered with the city police.
The data indicates that at least one case of robbery was recorded daily in 2018. However, police had been able to crack merely 205 cases of robbery until October 2018, some of which were registered in the previous years.
Guwahati, in 2018, witnessed an overall increase in the number of cases registered pertaining to other crimes as well. The city police registered a total of 16,892 cases between January 1 and November 30 in the past year, an increase of close to 1,000 reported crimes compared to the previous year.
The crimes registered in 2018 largely included theft, burglary and robbery, followed by crimes against women.