Mumbai: Increase In Domestic Help Thefts Prompt Calls For Rigorous Background Checks

Mumbai: Increase In Domestic Help Thefts Prompt Calls For Rigorous Background Checks

Highlighting the importance of preventative measures, a prominent maid-providing agency stressed on carrying out thorough background checks.

Megha KuchikUpdated: Sunday, March 03, 2024, 10:35 PM IST
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Mumbaikars often struggle to run daily errands on time given their hectic schedules. In such a tight spot, domestic helps are not less than saviours! However, there have been rising instances wherein unsuspecting rescuers perform unwanted 'clean-up' acts, stealing valuables from their hard-pressed employers.

Three recent incidents reported from Khar, Goregaon and Versova once again highlights the importance of hiring domestic help after thorough checks. In the first case, two newly-hired 'saviours' apparently spiked the meal of their employers, rendering them unconscious.

Hailing from Bihar, the duo allegedly decamped with jewellery valued at Rs 50 lakh. Similarly in Goregaon, a friend of a businessman, who had come to the latter's house to attend a religious function, lost foreign currency worth Rs 15 lakh at the residence. With the help of the CCTV footage, the police found out that businessman's domestic help, Rakesh Paswan, was behind the 'clean-up' act.

In the Versova case, a foreign woman and her sister had come to Mumbai for dental treatment. Sensing an opportune moment, their domestic help Chhotu allegedly stole their bag containing passports, money and jewellery. The cops discovered that he had stashed the booty at a friend's residence. During interrogation, the accused revealed that he committed the theft to make quick money.

Highlighting the importance of preventative measures, a prominent maid-providing agency stressed on carrying out thorough background checks. Describing its enlisting process, the agency said that it collects the Aadhaar and PAN cards, power bill, recent photos, two references and contact numbers of family members of the person-to-be-hired. For clients desiring an extra layer of security, police verification is made available at an additional cost, said the agency, adding that document copies are also provided to employers.

Mumbai Housing Society president Prakash Darekar emphasised the inherent risks associated with the common practice of hiring domestic helps through acquaintances or casual referrals. He urged for a more prudent approach, including thorough inquiries and meticulous document verification, rather than hinging decisions solely on word of mouth.

Recent worrying instances

- In Khar, two newly-hired domestic helps spiked meal of their employers.

- After they fell unconscious, duo decamped with jewellery worth Rs 50 lakh.

- In Goregaon, businessman's friend lost foreign currency worth Rs 15 lakh.

- Theft took place during religious function; CCTV footage nailed domestic help.

- In Versova, accused stole bag of foreign employer; it contained passports, valuables.

- Thieves had stashed booty at friend's residence.

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