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In the western suburbs of Mumbai, the Bandra-Kherwadi stretch, once notorious for hosting illegal bike racing events, has undergone a remarkable transformation with strategic measures taken by the Mumbai Police, The relentless efforts of the Mumbai Police have led to a complete stop to the motorbikes racing which had been ongoing for years at the patch, sources said.
What was once a hotspot for reckless riding and dangerous street racing has now become a symbol of effective law enforcement and community engagement.
The crackdown on illegal racing activities began with a comprehensive strategy and well-coordinated Nakabandis devised by the Mumbai Police, sources said.
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Regular nakabandis and strict action against the bikers, led to the targeting of both the root causes and the visible manifestations of illegal racing, an official said.
He said, in April, Mumbai Police took strict action against bikers racing in Bandra east area in the wee hours of April 4. It was been found that the bikers were allegedly involved in illegal racing and placing bets on their races.
The action came after the Kherwadi Police in Bandra East got information regarding bikers reaching Bandra East at around 2 am on April 4 and riding their bikes dangerously during illegal races.
"These bikers were not only endangering their lives but also putting the lives of others at risk, hence strict action was needed," an official said.
After the information was received regarding illegal bike racing, a team of police officials immediately swung into action and beefed up the security and well-coordinated nakabandi was organised. The police officials then nabbed the bikers and around 48 bikes were seized by the police in operation. In the matter, as many as 82 riders were booked by the Kherwadi Police.
Recognising the need for a comprehensive approach, the police implemented various measures to curb illicit racing activities in the area.
Mumbai Police significantly intensified their presence on the Bandra-Kherwadi stretch. The police began deploying additional patrolling and fixed nakabandi. Thorough checks were constantly conducted by the officials during multiple nakabandi on the patch, an official said.
The strategically placed checkpoints and stricter action against violators led to sending a strong message to those organising these races. Instead of mere fines for violation, the police also booked the rash riders and in some cases, their bikes were also seized by the police, sources said.
The stringent measures implemented by the police increased their regular presence at the location, acting as a deterrent that dissuaded street racers and reckless riders from participating in illegal races and bike stunts at the site.
The police also collaborated with traffic police to regulate the traffic flow and reduce the chances of illegal racing, sources added.
Mumbai Police also leveraged state-of-the-art surveillance systems at the patch by installing multiple CCTV cameras which were being monitored 24/7. High-definition cameras were strategically placed along the stretch to monitor and record activities, enabling the cops to identify and apprehend offenders, an official said.
"Stringent penalties and fines were imposed on offenders, and repeat offenders faced the possibility of impounded vehicles and even suspension of driving licenses," said an officer.