The Ghatkopar police have arrested three individuals – part of an interstate gang – who attempted and successfully planned robberies and dacoity at several places. Two of the three accused are history-sheeters with more than 37 cases registered against them in Mumbai and Maharashtra.
Details of arrest
The matter first surfaced on Friday night when a team from Ghatkopar police station were on night patrolling rounds. “We saw three people roaming suspiciously, wearing monkey masks, near a jewellery shop (named Monalisa at MG Road) and they had a four-wheeler near them, along with some weapons which looked like they would use to break the shutter of the shop. We kept an eye from a distance to see their movements and noticed another vehicle parked next to a nearby bank which had three more people,” said police sub-inspector Dnyaneshwar Kharmate.
After a while, when the three were attempting to break open the iron shutter of the jewellery shop, police ganged up on them. Unfortunately, the other three, who were sitting inside another parked vehicle, escaped.
The three accused had several illegal arms in their possession, police added, and they are identified as Rajesh Kadam (38) originally from Ratnagiri but resided at Kandivali, Mahavir Kumawat (36) and Hapuram Rajpurohit (22) – both originally from Rajasthan, resided in Mira Road. According to the police, they are a gang of 7 to 8 people, who primarily are involved in big-scale robberies or dacoities.
"Their MO is to first locate their target location. We got a visiting card of the Mona Lisa Jewellery Shop from one of the accused, which means one of them must have visited the shop previously for inspection. Later, as per a mental blueprint, they plan their robbery followed by arranging all types of arms and equipment to execute the robbery. Inside their vehicle, we found two sets of number plates which they use to change existing ones, to not get captured by us (police) or CCTV cameras," said an official.
Later during the interrogation, two of the three arrested accused turned out to be history sheeters, police added. Rajesh Kadam has over 24 cases against him at Colaba, Khar, VP Road, Kherwadi, Malad, Vile Parle, Mahim, Vakola and Pant Nagar police stations in Mumbai, and outside at Chiplun, Guhagar, Palghar and Satara areas for offences including attempt to murder, trespassing and lurking, robbery, theft, dacoity, voluntarily causing hurt, etc.
The second accused, Mahavir Kumawat has over 13 cases against him at Navghar, Amboli, Kasturba, Malad, MIDC, Parksite police stations in Mumbai, and outside at Vadodara (Gujarat), Chiplun, and Kashimira police stations for similar offences. These two accused first met in jail while they were serving many years ago, after which they developed a friendship and since then they formed a group to carry on robberies and dacoity.
The remaining members of the group have been put on the wanted list, said the police.
In December last year, this same jewellery shop’s owner had approached the police alleging a robbery at his shop in broad daylight. Two individuals, posing as customers, had entered the shop and ran away with a gold chain. After the investigation, the police had managed to arrest three people. Officials clarified that the two cases have no relation with each other, both gangs operate with different MOs and patterns.