Army doc waits in vain for stolen car, finds he is not alone

 Doctor Colonel Shailendra Singh has stopped waiting for a good news from police about his stolen car. A week after his white Hyundai Santro car’s theft from Lodhi Gardens made headlines during the Republic Day alert, the Army sticker-bearing vehicle is nowhere to be traced.

“I may now buy a new vehicle,” said Singh on Sunday, mourning the loss of his loved set of wheels which he had cared for like a family member in the last 10 years.

“There is no hope left. Police do not respond to my enquiries and I have lost interest in calling them to check on updates,” said Singh, who is on deputation to All India Institute Medical Sciences (AIIMS).

  He realises that he is not alone. Only about 10 per cent of stolen vehicles are recovered in the city which, on an average, reports a vehicle theft every 13 minute.

The Army colonel’s stolen car with stickers of Defence Services Officers Institute (DSI) and AIIMS was stolen from outside the Lodhi Gardens on January 24 - an incident for which the colonel’s doctor wife has not forgiven him till date.

“My wife was emotionally attached to the car. She was upset that we lost the car which we had maintained so well for 10 years,” said Singh, posted in the neurology department.

Singh these days is forced to use his wife’s Maruti Alto car for commuting from his home at Gulmohar Enclave to AIIMS hospital. He said the family was hoping to get the car back once the matter got attention in the media.

“The Lodhi Road policemen used to feel irritated when I enquired about my car. No body from the police station has come to discuss the theft or investigation,” he said.

The car theft took place just 48 hours before the R-Day parade, forcing police to view the incident from the angle of possible terror link.

Singh recalled that he parked the car along with that of 40 other colleagues’, all from non-Army background, outside the Lodhi Gardens but was the lone unfortunate one to lose a vehicle.

The 2005 model car with a registration number HR 51T 6646 had a central-locking system and according to Singh, he had rolled up all the windows before locking it. No valuable was inside the car when he left it at the parking lot, Singh added.

His car’s theft was the third in the week preceding the Republic Day. A taxi registered in Pathankot, a terror attack target, and a vehicle of an Inspector General of the Indo-Tibet Border Police (ITBP) in Noida were also stolen in the same week.

According to police sources, gangs of auto thieves from Meerut region in Uttar Pradesh have made the city their hunting ground after dark.

A stolen vehicle is dismantled within four hours and, if a situation allows, stolen vehicles are driven to potential buyers in far off places in northeastern states, West Bengal, Bihar and even Nepal.

A total of 31,114 motor vehicle theft cases were reported in 2015, according to police data.

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