GUWAHATI, Aug 19 - Forget about high-profile crimes. The Guwahati police administration, which boasts of being one of the best in the business, is finding it hard even to tackle the rising number of petty crimes, giving many residents in the capital city sleepless nights.
On Wednesday night, thieves broke into three houses located on RC Das Road of Hengerabari and decamped with valuables like laptops, cash, jewellery and mobile handsets.
The houses are located about 200 metres from each other and it is assumed that the same gang of thieves was involved in the incident. A similar theft was reported at a house located in a nearby lane on the same night. Last night, again thieves stole mobiles and other valuables through an open window of a residence in the locality.
In most of the cases, the thieves sprayed �sleeping gas� to drug the householders. In one case, even a Labrador was drugged by the gas and the dog woke up only after the cops arrived the next day.
There has been a spurt in cases of theft not only in Dispur areas, but across the city, raising questions on the efficiency of the police in city, which joined the league of big cities with the formation of a Commissionerate two years back.
Despite the repeated incidents in the localities of Dispur, there has neither been any visible patrolling on the ground at night, nor any exercise like surveys of migrant workers and tenants, etc, to check the menace.
In fact, a few weeks back, some residents of Hengerabari had intimated about the recurring incidents of theft in the area to the higher-ups in the Guwahati (East) division. Referring to several construction works going on in the area, the citizens had suggested that the credentials of the workers be verified. Nothing was done.
�There is no use telling the cops. They are for the VIPs�most of them are on VIP duty. Only when they are informed about an incident, they come and make a case diary. That�s all they do. Forget about nabbing the thieves, the chances of recovery of the stolen goods are also nil,� said Sanjib Das, a resident of the area.
Many residents of Hengerabari nowadays stay awake till dead of the night by keeping the lights switched on.
�I put the alarm at 2 am and move around the house and the compound for an hour before going to bed. That�s the time when the thefts and burglaries take place. There�s no way out...you have to stand guard... I haven�t seen a police patrol at night even after a spurt in such cases,� said another resident, Deepak Goswami.
Similar spurt in cases of theft has been reported from other areas as well.
In the year 2016, the city witnessed 950 cases of burglary and 3,030 cases of theft � which means every day accounted for three incidents of burglary and 10 theft cases during the year.
Till May this year, the number of burglaries recorded is 400 and that of theft cases 1,050.
Chances of getting the items back are bleak in majority of the cases. The detection rate of such theft cases is also dismal.
Even in high-profile robberies or burglaries, like the one at the MP Jewellery and Titan showroom on GS Road, there has been a question mark on the investigations. Though a few arrests have been made, the investigations have reportedly not reached any logical conclusion. Chances of recovery of the stolen items are also remote.