Snatching gold chains is old hat. But have you heard of a cop masterminding such a crime? A police constable with Hill Line police in Ulhasnagar has been accused of forcing youths to steal motorbikes and snatch gold chains.
A 23-year-old youth, Abdul Hasan Shah, from Samata Nagar, Kurla Camp Road in Ulhasnagar has made a complaint leveling these charges against police constable K P Dande to several police authorities, one of which was made on November 26, 2013 (copy available with ABI). But, according to Shah, no action has been taken against Dande.
According to the complaint Dande befriended Shah last year. Shah runs a tailoring business was assaulted by a few individuals on August 31, 2013 because he had defaulted in repaying a loan. After being discharged from a hospital, Shah registered an FIR against the accused, but no arrests were made. However, Dande, the complainant accuses, took a bribe of Rs 1000 to arrest two individuals who had assaulted Shah. Dande and Shah became friends, and the constable, Shah accuses, often borrowed money from him.
According to Shah, on September 7, Dande visited Shah’s shop and befriended his employees. He told them that he ran a racket where he had youths stealing motorbikes and selling them to a scrap dealer for him. Despite Shah’s protests, he then asked them to join his group. Touting his police connections, Dande apparently promised to see that they never faced any trouble.
“Main policewala hun. Tum logon ko kuchh bhi nahin hone dunga. Main sab sambhal lunga, tum (Shah) mera khabari ban kar raho,” Dande said to Shah.
The four youth made their first robbery, a motorbike from Ambernath, on September 18. They stole more bikes, on September 20, 21, 25 and 26. The stolen motorbikes would apparently be stored secretly in Kailash Colony, Ulhasnagar-5. Later, however, Shah claims, Dande told them to start snatching gold chains from women. According to Dande, the motorbike thefts won’t proving too profitable as the scrap dealer was offering poor rates.
At this point, Shah started becoming increasingly wary of Dande, and started tapping his telephonic conversations (CD available with ABI) with him. Here is the entire conversation…
However, by the end of the month, on September 27, trouble started looming. A man whose motorbike had been stolen by the group, was able to locate the thieves with the bike. Sensing trouble, Shah accuses, Dande arrested him along with two of his employees, Abhay Gupta and Santosh Pawar. He also produced the eight stolen motorbikes. Dande apparently pinned all the crime on Shah, calling him the gang leader. The other two youth, Pankaj Gupta and Toya, are still absconding.
Shah was released on bail recently, after having spent 22 days in deferent police station’s custody. He made a complaint against Dande to the police, but no action has still been taken. Shah says, “After my complaint, Dande told me no action will be taken against him as some of his seniors are also involved in the same racket. Dande offered me Rs 50,000 to keep mum and said he will remove my name from the FIR,” said Shah.
“I am in bandobast of Haji Malang. I don’t remember about Shah”s complaint,” said Narendra Jadhav, senior inspector, Hill Line police station.
When contacted, Dande refused to comment about the case on the phone.