FIRs remain elusive for hapless citizens
Date of Publishing:/8/2010
Yet another frustrated citizen alleges lack of police co-operation in filing an FIR, reports Chaitraly Deshmukh. Sohini Mapatra remains FIR-less, even as she struggles to start procedures with her bank to reclaim Rs 25,000 that she alleges were stolen from her account
Even as Mirror reported a frustrated local techie's inability to file an FIR with local police after his ATM account was emptied of almost Rs 20,000 (dated August 11), another frustrated citizen is speaking up about a similar problem, that left her unable to demystify exactly where her FIR should be lodged, to solve her problem.
Sohini Mahapatra, a resident of Sangvi, wrote to Mirror alleging that on August 7, a sum of Rs 25,000 was withdrawn from her Union Bank of India (Kasarwadi branch) account, inspite of the ATM card being in her possession throughout, in three installments of Rs 10,000, another Rs 10,000 and Rs 5,000 respectively. This was discovered on August 9, when her mini-statement was checked using the same card.
Mahapatra alleges that when she approached the Kasarwadi police station (in the Bhoasri jurisdiction) with her husband on August 10, the couple was told to file a complaint with the Cyber Crime department. They did so, by registering an application (number 4677) and got a receipt for the same, after which they went to IDBI Bank, FC road branch, with the receipt in hand.
The IDBI bank officials however, insisted that an FIR be submitted to them before the complaint could be formally acknowledged. When the hapless duo went back to the Bhosari station however, police continued to insist the matter was out of their jurisdiction and that the Cyber Crime department would contact the Mahapatras eventually. The couple, at their wits end, went and appealed to the Sangvi police station, in their area of residence. Finally, as late as 6 pm that evening, a senior police officer there told them to file an FIR and get a stamp on their application at the Three Zone, Pimpri police station. "While it was made clear that the fraud had occured at Kasarwadi, not Sangvi, there was finally some level of co-operation," said Sohini. At the Pimpri Three Zone station, the couple finally got a stamp on their application at 7.30 pm. However, even at this point of time there was still no FIR lodged even as the clock struck 8.30 pm.
Inspector in-charge of the Bhosari police station, Sudhir Prabhakar Aspat told Mirror, "I am not aware of this incident. I will probe into the matter after I consult my police station staff. I am in a meeting and will talk to you later."
Says Sohini, "This incident leaves me with several important questions. Firstly, why has our FIR still not been lodged anywhere? Secondly, is one supposed to file an FIR at the police station where the crime has happened, or the one where the victim has his or her residence? And finally, does such an issue of an ATM fraud come under the police or the Cyber Crime department?" Their problem remains unresolved.
Still no FIR for local techie Following up the Mirrorstory on August 11 (Cops deny techie FIR, keep him on hold), this reporter tried to contact the Inspector in-charge of the Yerawada police station, Deepak Sawant. However, calls remained unanswered through the day.
Techie Soaid Karamat who works at Dell says,"I received a call from a lady sub-inspector,informing me that she was been severely reprimanded by her senior officer as she had not filed an FIR for my case. I was called on Wednesday morning to the station by the police. On Wednesday morning around 11 am, when I reached the police station,the officer informed me that after the bank provides to them the necessary details, they would file the case.They then proceeded to contact the bank branch manager in front of me.However, the FIR has still not been made.Moreover,the police informed me that I have to submit in writing that I don’t have any personal grievances against them and that I consent that they are performing the necessary actions to return my lost cash to me.However,I did not sign anything or give them any written consent."
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