Mobile phone thief mowed down by local train, accomplices escape

Such incidents where crooks try to snatch mobile phones from unwary commuters by hitting them with a rod are on the rise

A person, allegedly a mobile phone thief, who was standing on a signal pole between Mahim and Bandra, to snatch mobiles from local train commuters, died last week when he was hit by a local train.

Also Read: Woman journalist molested, robbed of mobile phone in Mumbai local train

The spot where the incident occurred. The stretch between Bandra and Mahim has become notorious for criminals who target commuters
The spot where the incident occurred. The stretch between Bandra and Mahim has become notorious for criminals who target commuters

Sohail Khan was hit by the train from which he planned to snatch phones. Khan was thrown on the sharp railings on the other side, and died on the spot. Such incidents are on the rise. The miscreants hit commuters with a rod and make their mobile phone or belongings fall down, grab the loot and escape.

Mumbai Crime: Mobile thief stabs train passenger for protesting

Such incidents are called ‘dropping cases’ by the police. Cops said that such incidents have almost doubled this year (see box). The incident took place between Mahim and Bandra, notorious for such dropping cases.

Attempt gone wrong
According to police officials, Khan had climbed the signal pole towards Borivli and was waiting for the train to start travelling towards Churchgate. Two of his accomplices were waiting below on the tracks.

A slow local arrived from Bandra on platform number 2, and was moving towards Churchgate. The train was moving very slowly. The two accomplices thought that the motorman might have seen them and would inform the cops; they therefore decided to escape.

Read Story: Mobile 'thief' held after leaping off running train in handcuffs 3 years ago

Meanwhile the train got a green signal and picked up speed. Khan came down from the signal pole and tried to escape, but was mowed down by the train. He died on the spot.

The Bandra GRP registered an accidental death case; however, Khan’s family members claimed it was a case of murder. The motorman came to the police station and gave a statement that Khan was hit.

Past incident
A similar incident had occurred on June 30, when Niyanta Mirjankar (22) and Jeremy Fernandes (25) were going home from their workplace in Goregaon. Mirjankar is a Bandra resident while Fernandes stayed at Charni Road.

The duo was standing at the door with their phones in their hand, when two thieves hit Mirjankar’s hand with a pole, causing the device to slip from her hands and fall out of the train. This occurred between Santacruz and Khar, and the duo alighted at Khar and walked back on the tracks to search for the phone.

They were run down by a Churchgate-bound slow local train, leading to Fernandes’ death and injuring Mirjankar. Police later arrested the two accused, Ajay Waghri and Kolanji Krishna Vel.

No of ‘dropping’ cases
>> January to August 2014: 70
>> January to August 2015: 160

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