At about 11.20 am, Dona crossed the finishing line first at a sports meet at the St Thomas Church grounds in Mathikere, collected her gold medal and rushed to Kanteerava Stadium to cheer her father who was participating in the Y’S Men International Sports Day.
Miscreants (police yet to establish even the number of persons) broke the windows of four cars – KA 51 N 9694, KA 01 MF 2018, KL 59C 6096 and KA 03 MH 5062 – parked inside the stadium and stole everything that was inside.
Dona, who lost several of her certificates, said: “I have more medals in my home. But I got this today only.”
The victims suspect that the security guards in charge at the stadium were hand-in-glove with the burglars. “How could somebody steal from cars parked inside the stadium, and that too four cars, without the knowledge of the security guards,” asked Joshi Basil, Dona’s father and a clinical psychiatrist.
According to SR Nagar police, the miscreants found valuables in three out of the four cars that they broke and suggested that the incident could have happened between 3 pm to 3.30 pm. But the members of Y’S Men Club came to know about the matter only at 4.30 pm, when they were shifting from the archery ground to another location within the stadium. Around 20 cars were parked at gate no. 7, facing Vittal Mallya Road.
Besides his daughter’s gold medal and certificates, Basil lost Rs 9,000 in cash, his driving licence, while Anjali Mary, an employee with St John’s Hospital, lost Rs 1,000, a debit card and a credit card, apart from her bag, voter’s ID and PAN card.
The police picked up both the security guards on duty on Sunday and initial interrogation revealed nothing about the burglars.
Athletes who come for practise told Deccan Herald: “Security has always been a concern. Earlier, the Department of Youth Services and Sports (DYSS) had hired the services of Home Guards.
For reasons best known to them, the Home Guards were removed. For both outdoor and indoor stadiums, there are only a handful of guards and most of them are there to help the government officials, not oversee security matters.
A few months ago, the SR Nagar police had received complaints when women walkers were stalked. Cops were deputed, and then everything was hushed up.
Every now and then there is a problem. DYSS is only interested in ad hoc arrangement. It is high time permanent security arrangements are made as many budding athletes spend hours practising in the stadium everyday.
Three die in road accident
A 30-year-old software engineer from Bellary and two of his family members died in a road accident when the car in which they were travelling hit a lorry parked on the NH 4 at Avalahalli in Bangalore Rural district in the wee hours of Sunday. The deceased have been identified as Manoj S, his mother Anantha Lakshmi (58) and aunt Geetha (50). His father Satyanarayana (60) and his friend’s mother Saraswathi (55) have sustained injury in the mishap but are said to be out of danger. They were returning from Tirupati.
According to the police, Manoj who was at the wheels, smashed his car into the cement-laden lorry parked on the right side of the road around 3.15 am.
While Manoj and his mother were killed instantly, Geetha died on the way to the hospital.
Police said Manoj could not spot the lorry that was parked on the wrong side of the road. Besides, the lorry driver had not turned the vehicle’s tail lamp on. Manoj who might have been sleepy, drove the vehicle recklessly resulting in the accident. Avalahalli Police have booked a case against the lorry driver but have also named Manoj as responsible for the mishap.
The bodies were handed over to the relatives after conducting post-mortem at the Government Hospital, Hoskote.