Srinagar Aug 24: Police in Srinagar on Tuesday busted a gang by arresting 10 persons involved in burglary and extortion while impersonating as security forces personnel by donning combat uniforms and dummy weapons.
A police spokesman identified the accused as Tariq Ahmad Rather, son of Ghulam Mohammad Rather, a resident of Tangpora, presently Khan Mohalla Pati Shalabugh, Barkat Husain, son of Ghulam Rasool Hajam of Mirgund Pattan, Mohammad Yousuf Sheikh, son of Abdul Rehman Sheikh, of Khan Sahib Budgam, Shahbaz Ahmad Laway, son of Mohammad Afzal Laway, of Sutlan Pora Pattan, Manzoor Ahmad Waza, son of Abdul Aziz Waza of Matipora Pattan, Altaf Ahmad Guroo, son of Abdul Khaliq Guroo resident of Maloora, Farooq Ahmad Lone, son of Abli Lone of Khan Sahib Budgam, Mohammad Maqbool Laway, son of Ghulam Mohammad of Sultan Pora Pattan, Jan Mohammad Shiekh, son of Mohammad Yousuf Shiekh of Raithan Check Budgam and Bilal Ahmad Kumar, son of Sona Ullah Kumar, a resident of Sanoor Kalipora Magam Budgam.
Police have recovered gold jewelry worth Rs 22 lakh, cash of Rs 3.30 lakh and a vehicle worth Rs 2 lakh purchased out of the stolen property from the burglars. Besides, camouflage uniforms, belts, boots and caps used to commit the crime along with five dummy AK-47, four dummy pistols, iron rods were also recovered from the arrested burglars, police said.
The arrests and recovery were made following complaints of burglaries in May and July.
On May 5, one Mohammad Maqbool Bhat, a resident of Khawaja Bagh, Maloora had lodged a complaint with Police Station Parimpora stating therein that during the preceding night, some 6-8 unidentified gunmen wearing combat dress barged into his residential house and looted jewellery, cash and mobile phone. Accordingly a case vide FIR No. 107/2021 under relevant sections of law was registered and investigation taken up.
Moreover, on July 8, another complainant Mohammad Rafiq Ahangar of Hokarsar Umerabad lodged a complaint saying that the preceding night, some 4-6 unidentified gunmen wearing combat dresses entered into his house and looted jewellery and cash. In this regard, another case vide FIR No. 203/2021 under relevant sections of law was registered and investigation taken up, police said.
A special investigation team led by SHO PS Parimpora under the close supervision of SDPO West, Jan Muzaffar and SP City West, Perbeet Singh was constituted to probe the burglaries.
During the course of investigation, officers taking assistance of modern techniques and leads from technical evidences learnt about the involvement of the gang of the 10 accused persons and arrested them.
Preliminary investigation, police said, has revealed that the burglars would first reccee the suspected areas to find out the target houses invariably the ones where marriage ceremony would be scheduled in near future.
The arrested burglars had adopted a novel way in which they would don army camouflage uniforms and enter into the houses with dummy pistols and assault rifles "on the pretext of cordon and search, " police said.
"When they got ingress into the victim/target houses, they would lock the family in one room, snatch their mobile phones and during search, loot the valuable gold items and cash," it added.
During questioning, the burglars confessed about their involvement in the commission of crime and upon their disclosure, police parties raided different locations and recovered the stolen cash and property.
Further investigation into the matter is in progress, police said.