Monsoon is here, so there's no way potholes could be far behind. And as if there were fewer problems to deal with during this season, Mumbaikars are now facing a new trouble on roads. According to an extensive report in this paper, city cops have busted a gang of thieves that targets those riding pillion. The monsoon connection: They try to snatch bags or belongings of bike riders when they slow down to maneuver a pothole.
Incidentally, the modus operandi of the aforementioned gang is not too different from the hundreds of chainsnatchers roaming our streets. The thieves follow the bike rider, especially those with a pillion, till the spot riddled with mini-craters. Since these anti-socials are already acquainted with the terrain, they are aware of the exact spot where bikes would slow down before approaching a pothole. They strike as soon as bikes slow down and speed away with whatever they catch hold of.
Such situations are riddled with danger because often the pillion falls from the bike due to the impact of the strikes. In other instances, the victims chase the thieves in hopes to getting their belongings back, and in doing so, they further endanger their lives by speeding. With their eyes trained on the fleeing robbers, the bikers may get distracted, which can lead to tragedy.
It's an unfortunate truth that such thefts are commonplace, and blaming potholes for it is futile, but removing the craters gains further significance under such circumstances.
Potholes always pose some kind of danger – if it isn't a thief attacking you, riding over these craters cause serious back problems. So, while our cops do their best to nab the robbers, the civic body should ensure smoother roads. Ultimately, it's public safety that both should be working towards.