Chain snatcher slips into mangrove cover
12 cases have been registered so far against a mysterious man who commands knowledge of the swampy marshland nearby, and escapes into its depths after robbing late evening walkers
The Carter Road serial chain snatcher has struck again. On Friday, yet another person fell victim to the popular promenade’s now famous and feared serial chain-snatcher. With 13 cases of chain snatching reported in the past one-and-a-half years, this shifty phantom has almost acquired mythical proportions, pocketing valuables of late evening walkers and slipping into the dense mangroves with baffling agility.
The case of the serial chain snatcher has bewildered cops, who claim that he lurks in inconspicuous spots along the Carter Road promenade in the evenings, stalks his victims of choice, snatches their chains and disappears into the thickets nearby. For the past one-and-a-half years, the unidentified man has successfully managed to evade cops, inspiring fear in the hearts of all those who frequent the promenade for their late evening walks.
There are boards all along the promenade, alerting walkers of this chain-snatcher. Last year, Bage, a newly married woman, was walking along the promenade at 9 pm, when her mangalsutra was snatched by the unidentified man. A senior citizen, Shetty, was robbed of her gold chain last year. “I am a regular at the promenade for the past three years. I have never been a victim, but the incidents have started to make me wonder if I should be as regular as I was before,” said Bandra resident Sanjay Shirke.
After every complaint, local cops wield their flashlights and scour the mangroves. “The snatcher slips into the mangrove cover after every crime. He is well versed with the topography of the mangrove swamp. We are frustrated with his onslaughts. He has made our lives difficult,” an officer from Khar police station said.
“It has become very difficult for us to nab him inside the mangroves, as it is impossible for us to negotiate its swampy terrain. He is well aware of the escape routes inside the swamp,” added the officer. Fed up of their aborted attempts to nab the mysterious snatcher, cops are also hoping that one of the victims will manage to nab the snatcher before he can escape.
“There are a limited number of policemen, so we need the support of the public if we are to nab him. He sits on the promenade and after snatching chains, he runs into the mangroves, which makes it difficult for the police to nab him,” said an officer. Deputy Commissioner of Police Pratap Dighavkar said, “A special squad is being formed to nab the snatcher. Extra precautions are being taken as a lot of celebrities come for their walks here.”