Watch: Woman gets caught after failed robbery bid at jewellery store in Virar, hilarious video goes viral

The woman, in her questioning, told the police that had lost her job during the COVID-19 pandemic

Gautam S. MengleUpdated: Wednesday, May 25, 2022, 11:25 PM IST

Mumbai: A closed-circuit television (CCTV) camera clip of a jewellery store heist that failed has left social media amused – it shows a woman trying to rob a store ending up being overpowered and caught, instead. However, few know of the tragedy behind the comedy – the woman had lost her job during the pandemic and hence, turned to crime.

The short video clip debuted on WhatsApp, Facebook and Twitter on Wednesday morning and quickly went viral.

The following is the sequence of events that ensued on Tuesday afternoon. The accused woman, wearing a burqa, entered Devnarayan Jewellers in Virar, posing as a customer. Even as the owner, Devilal Gujar, 26, was showing her some jewellery, she whipped out a gun from the plastic bag she was carrying and pointed it at Gujar, telling him to sit down on a stool on his side of the counter and place both his hands on his knees.

However, Gujar slid over the counter and grabbed the gun with one hand and the woman’s burqa with another and dragged the struggling woman out of the store, where a passer-by noticed the fracas and stopped to help. They immediately called the police control room and the information was relayed to the Arnala police station, which rushed a team to the spot.

“It was only after we took the woman and the gun into our custody that we realised that the ‘gun’ was actually a cigarette lighter, which looked like the real thing because it was the same size and had a steel body. The woman, identified as Riya Mistry, 21, was taken to the police station for further inquiries,” said Senior Police Inspector Raju Mane of Arnala police station.

Riya told police that she used to work in a bar but lost her job in the Covid 19 pandemic and the lockdown that followed. Over the next two years, she tried hard to find another job but was unable to do so. By this time, it was getting increasingly difficult to make ends meet, despite the best efforts put in by her and her husband. In desperation, Riya told the police, she decided to turn to crime.

“Riya visited the jewellery store on Monday and took stock of its layout and security, as well as the fact that it was deserted in the afternoon. Subsequently, she returned on Tuesday, well prepared. Apart from the gun-shaped cigarette lighter, we also recovered a steel chain, a length of rope and chilli powder from her bag,” Mane said.

Following her confession, Riya was subsequently arrested and charged with attempted robbery under the Indian Penal Code. She was produced in court on Wednesday and has been remanded in police custody till Friday, officers said.

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