Hearing and speech impaired person arrested for stealing from train commuters: Police

Hearing and speech impaired person arrested for stealing from train commuters: Police


A 33-year-old hearing and speech impaired person has been arrested by the Mumbai Central Government Railway Police for allegedly stealing mobile phones and luggage of passengers travelling in long-distance trains. Police said the accused, Salim Shaikh alias Tushar, has been committing crimes for the last decade and is wanted in several theft cases.

According to police officials, Shaikh was arrested on Friday, a day after he allegedly stole a backpack belonging to an Indian Army personnel.

“The Army man, Santosh Gaikwad, was in Mumbai to attend a wedding, after which he was returning to his hometown in Akola,” said Senior Police Inspector M Inamdar of Mumbai Central GRP. “He was to catch a train to Akola from Dadar railway station, but he missed it. While he was waiting for another train, he slept on the bench installed on the railway platform”.

“Shaikh took advantage of that, stole his luggage and escaped,” said Inamdar, adding, “after the complainant woke up, he realised that his luggage was missing, following which he came to Mumbai Central GRP office and lodged a complaint.”

Accordingly, a case of theft was registered. While police were looking for the suspects, they scrutinised the CCTV footage of the railway station, in which they spotted the suspect fleeing with the complainant’s luggage.

Police said they showed the CCTV grabs to their informers and Shaikh was identified. He was subsequently arrested from Bhandup.

Inamdar said, “Shaikh had a female friend, who he considered as his sister and he would steal the valuables and hide them at her residence in Bhandup.”

Police said since Shaikh cannot hear or speak, they are finding it difficult to communicate with him. “He does not know how to read or write either, so interrogating him is a challenge,” said Inamdar.

Police said they somehow managed to ascertain that he had been hiding the stolen goods in Bhandup, due to which they conducted a search at his female friend’s house that helped in recovering the phone, smart watch and other valuables that belonged to the Indian Army personnel.

Police said Shaikh was produced in court and has been remanded in police custody.


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