By Bhavita Kukreja:
I struck on writing this article when I became a victim of one of the crimes that take place on Delhi roads almost every day. In the first case I was a victim and in the other, a witness to the crime.
One evening I arrived back home and was about to open the gate of my house when suddenly someone came from behind and grabbed my neck. I struggled and got rid of the hands holding my neck but was left with scratches all over. I turned numb and before I could realize what had happened, the man left on his bike and even attempted to do something really hideous which I won’t be able to mention here. I shiver and get goosebumps whenever that bitter experience comes back to haunt me. I always felt safe in my colony but now I feel afraid on going out alone after 6 P.M. in my own neighbourhood.
In another incident, I was accompanying my aunt and uncle to a temple in the Janakpuri area of Delhi and we were passing by a local market when a man snatched my aunt’s Mangalsutra and ran off. The people were quite supportive and offered help and called up the police as well. We waited for a long time but the police did not arrive so we went to the police-station. The inspector there asked us to write an application even though we were determined to register an FIR. We wrote the application and came back home. Then I narrated the whole incident to my father and he told me that the inspector made us write an application to save his time and effort. If he had written an FIR then he would have been held answerable to the SHO about unsolved crime and by writing an application, we had put the crime off-record. It is strange to see how our protectors don’t really care about our safety and we are left all by ourselves.
Here are a few instances that I learnt about from a policeman and would like to share them with everyone so that none of us falls prey to such tricks.
A child will start crying near a road and will insist you to help him cross the road. When you hold his hand, he will apply a chemical powder on your hands without your notice. It is itching powder and itching will start within seconds of coming in contact with the powder. You will try to wash your hands or sit in shade to feel relaxed from the itching and while you do so, you will get unconscious and by the time you wake up, your valuables will be gone!
These thieves put to use various signals on the road and they carefully observe the people and target the women who are travelling alone in their cars. They knock on the window-pane saying that the oil is leaking from the car so that the woman steps out of her car to take a look. While she does so, they run off with the valuables they find in the car.
It is mainly applied in parking lots. They will spread 10/50 rupees notes on the ground and will shout behind you that your money has fallen from your bag/pocket. As you go back to pick the notes, they pick your pocket and steal the wallet.
These are common instances that are heard of or read of in the newspapers almost daily. I hope people reading this article become more aware and further spread the awareness.