22 of the 28 families in the building where the 22-yr-old was killed have gone to their native place; 3 other cases of assault and a murder were registered in April in the area
A surge in the number of crimes in and around Sai Dham residential complex in Kalyan, residents are a rattled lot. The most recent in the list of crimes was the gruesome rape and murder of a 22-year-old woman on April 14.
The residents have also started installing CCTVs and grills in their balconies to keep themselves safe
When mid-day visited the complex yesterday, which has six wings, we found that in the B-wing, where the victim lived, 22 families out of 28 had left for their native place to remain safe.
Since no society has been formed owing to an ongoing dispute between the builder and the local corporator, the residents pooled in money for the installation of 24 CCTVs and iron fence around the complex. Pics/Satej Shinde
“Since the incident, most of the residents were feeling unsafe, and went to their native place for some days. And those of us who stayed back have started guarding the building from 1-6 am,” said Sarvesh Pathak (34), a resident of the complex who works at a pharmaceutical firm.
The residents have also started installing CCTVs and grills in their balconies to keep themselves safe. Jai Lalwani (35), an assistant manager with a private firm staying on the seventh floor of the C-wing, told mid-day, “Since our flat is on the top floor, robbers can easily enter our house through the open balcony. We have been living here for over 3 years, but after the recent incident we got grills installed in the balcony. Residents of over 10 flats have got the grills installed within two days.”
Raghunath Putta (58), an Indian Navy officer residing in the complex, said, “Most of those who left were tenants, but we who own the flats can’t as this is all we have.” While talking about what happened on the day of the incident, he said, “The robbers used the drainage pipeline to climb up and since a sliding door of the balcony was open, they could get in.”
Krishna Mistry, another resident, in whose gallery the accused had hid after committing the crime, said, “I was sleeping in the bedroom and at 5:30 am I heard some noise. When I found them hiding in my gallery, I shooed them away suing an iron rod.” Mistry’s father said the accused entered their flat through a 2-ft gap in the grill.
Since no society has been formed owing to a dispute between the builder and the local corporator, the residents pooled in money for the installation of 24 CCTVs and iron fence around the complex.
Gulabrao Gore, senior police inspector, Khadakpada police station, said, “We have arrested the four accused and three of them have been remanded to police custody till April 24. While their leader, the minor, was sent to Bhiwandi remand home. We have also increased the patrolling in the area.”
The Thane Crime Branch on Monday arrested four people identified as Nitin Wagh (19), Nitesh alias Nitya Bhagwan Bhoir (20), Ravindra alias Ravi Wagh (20) and their 16-year-old leader. The crime branch after arresting the gang in the Kalyan case, found that they were involved in three more cases of assault and murder in the same area in April itself.
mid-day also met with the accused’s families in Milind Nagar and Gauripada road in Khadakpada and found that the accused are school dropouts and known as the Waghya Gang in their locality.
“I work as a domestic help at five houses to look after my two sons after my husband died. I used to just sleep after a tiring day and did not get to interact with my children. I knew he was doing some odd job as he used to give some cash at home too. I had never thought that he would commit such a big offence,” said Usha Bhoir, accused Nitin Bhoir’s mother.
The residents of this area, who are tribals, deal in country liquor and are also addicted to it. “We were not aware of the crime until the cops came to our place to inform us about his arrest. Initially, we couldn’t believe that he could be involved in something as big as a murder as we thought he commits small thefts. But when he came along with the police and showed them the robbed laptop that he had hidden in a bag, we were shocked. We don’t even have the money to go to the court or hire an advocate,” said Ramesh Waghe, the father of an accused.
A watchman at Mangeshi Paradise, which is around 100 m away from Sai Dham complex, was assaulted on April 10 by the same gang when he stopped them from stealing a bulb.
Sanjay Singh (28), the victim, told mid-day, “After taking a round of the society, I sat down for a nap. When I woke up after few minutes with a noise, I saw three youngsters stealing a bulb. I shouted, ‘Badmash, kahan ja rahe ho?’ (Hey punks, where are you going?). They ganged up and assaulted me with a sharp weapon. I got more than 20 stitches and also a case registered against them in Khadakpada police station. They came with an intention to rob, but since I was awake, they attacked me. It’s God’s grace that I survived.”