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Updated January 11th, 2024 at 19:16 IST

Ghaziabad Jewellery Heist: Masked Criminals Decamp With ₹50 Lakh Worth Jewellery in Loni Area

The incident, now under police investigation, has sparked public outrage and raised questions about the efficacy of Uttar Pradesh Police patrolling.

Harsha Chandwani
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New Delhi:  In a brazen act caught on CCTV in Ghaziabad's Loni area, a gang of over a dozen masked criminals executed a swift and calculated burglary at the "Santu Sonu Jewellers" in Ramvihar market on the night of January 9. Armed with a metal rod, the criminals forcibly opened the shutter, looting jewelry valued at ₹50 lakh, in mere two minutes.

Speaking to Republic, Sonu Verma, the proprietor of the looted jewelry store, expressed his dismay over the incident, stating, "Wednesday early morning at 4 am, I got information that the shutter of the shop was broken. When I reached the shop at 4.30 am, I was shocked to see that all the items and jewelry were missing. The logbooks were lying on the floor, the safe was open, and jewelry in lockers were not to be seen. The criminals stole 30-35 kg silver and almost 450 gms gold jewelry. Some jewelry that was half-made was also stolen. In total, we have suffered a loss of almost 50 lakhs from the robbery."

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He further said that "I am astonished; this is a big market in Loni area of Ghaziabad, and other jewelers are also here, but the police were nowhere patrolling at night. This is the worst situation of law and order. We have given a complaint, and the police have lodged an FIR against 15 unknown individuals in this matter, but we don't know if we will get our jewelry back or not. There were jewelry items that were made on order basis, but now those are all stolen. We are in huge shock."

The incident, now under police investigation, has sparked public outrage and raised questions about the efficacy of Uttar Pradesh Police patrolling. Social media users have criticized the Ghaziabad police for the perceived poor law and order situation, highlighting the absence of patrolling jeeps in the market area.

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Loni Police ACP Ravi Prakash provided insights into the investigation, stating, "The CCTV footage is 2 minutes and 20 seconds long; the criminals came in a big group and divided the robbery work. Some were opening the shutter while some broke the lock of the shop and shutter with a metal rod. We have taken the DVR in our custody, but the main issue is that the faces of none of the robbers are visible in the footage because the criminals have covered their faces, and this was a planned robbery. We are accessing and tracking the routes from where they came and which direction they went to. To nab the robbers, we are right now tracking the entry and exit of the market area."

CCTV footage accessed by the police revealed the audacious theft, with approximately 14 criminals gathering outside the jewelry store. The thieves, faces concealed, efficiently used a metal rod to breach the store, attempting to rob a neighboring shop before ultimately fleeing the scene. The footage indicates the criminals were present for over 20 minutes, displaying a brazen confidence in their actions. The lack of patrolling in the area during the late-night hours contributed to the successful execution of the robbery. 

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Published January 11th, 2024 at 18:40 IST

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