Aundh Attack: An Open Letter To Pune Police Commissioner Amitesh Kumar

Aundh Attack: An Open Letter To Pune Police Commissioner Amitesh Kumar

Today, disproportionate attention is being given by the police and the media to the Kalyani Nagar Porsche accident because of the high-profile nature of the case. But for every such high-profile incident, there are several others that go unnoticed

R Raj RaoUpdated: Friday, June 14, 2024, 07:12 PM IST
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Pune CP Amitesh Kumar | ANI Photo

Sir,

I would like to draw your attention to a ghastly incident that took place in Aundh, the neighbourhood in which I live, in the early hours of June 13. A senior citizen, Sameer Roychowdhury, aged 77 years, was on his morning walk around 5am when thugs hit him on his head with iron rods in a bid to rob him, leading to his death. The unprovoked attack has sent shock waves among us, the residents of Aundh. Many of us, including senior citizens, women and youngsters are in the habit of taking our constitutional morning walks at that hour, and what happened to Roychowdhury can easily happen to any of us. When he left his home that fateful morning, as he had been doing for years, did he know that he would meet his end in a nearby hospital just a few hours later, and that too for no fault of his? Can you please update us as to whether his killers have been caught and arrested? Can their pictures be circulated on social media so that we can be wary of them?

As a resident of Aundh since 1991, I regret to inform you that the area that was regarded as highly safe in the past, is no longer so. Last February, there was a burglary in the society in which I live, including my own flat that was broken into, but to date, the culprits have not been booked.

Today, disproportionate attention is being given by the police and the media to the Kalyani Nagar Porsche accident because of the high-profile nature of the case. But for every such high-profile incident, there are several others that go unnoticed. Do the lives of ordinary middle-class people not matter? Walking the streets of Pune in general, and Aundh in particular, is fraught with danger. Either one is accosted by thugs, as in Roychowdhury’s case, or is mowed down by hit-and-run vehicles. Most vehicles involved in such hit-and-run murders flout every rule in the RTO rule book. They either ply without number plates or have illegal number plates in complete violation of RTO rules. They also have rolled up windows with dark black sun control film, prohibited by the RTO. And yet, it is rare to find the traffic police intercepting such vehicles, whom they complicitly regard as ‘VIP’ vehicles.

Streets in Aundh that are a cul de sac, such as Park Avenue where I live, often see men in parked cars till as late as 2 and 3am openly drinking. Yet one never sees police vans doing their nightly rounds (as they did in the past) that would serve as a deterrent to such offenders. Even calling the cops or sending them videos is of no use.

Likewise, if there was regular police patrol in Aundh from the nearby Chaturshrungi Police Station and the Aundh Police Chowky from midnight to 6am, the life of the unfortunate Roychowdhuri might have been saved.

I trust, sir, that this letter, which I write on behalf of all the concerned citizens of Aundh, will have the desired results, and make our locality the safe haven that it once was.

(The writer is a well-known author and former head of the English department at Savitribai Phule Pune University)

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