The trend came to light when an alleged full-time gambling racket came up clean every time the police paid a surprise visit.

Reversing the gaze now Delhis criminals are using CCTV cameras to track the policeImage for representation only
news Crime Sunday, May 08, 2016 - 15:31

The Delhi Police, which has its own CCTV network to monitor law and order across the national capital, is now baffled by criminals appropriating video technology to track the movement of local police around their hideouts.

The trend came to light at a location in the south of the city, where a gambling racket was allegedly operating full-time, but came up clean every time the police paid a surprise visit.

The police later received inputs about CCTV cameras installed around the gamblers' hideout in Vasant Gaon and planned a secret operation, a senior official said.

But things only got worse as a woman, who allegedly sheltered the gang, confronted the police team and accused them of harassing her by entering the premises of her house. And to support her claims, she had video grabs from the CCTV footage.

The terrified beat officials reported the matter back to the police station, compelling the station in-charge to take up the issue with senior officials.

"It has been observed that criminals indulging in sale of illicit liquor, running gambling rackets and selling drugs, have installed CCTV cameras in their houses to keep a check on the movements of beat constables of the area,” said DCP (South) Ishwar Singh.

"If any beat constable dares to enter the premises forcibly, they would use these CCTV cameras as evidence, alleging them of having gone there to demand money or causing harassment to women living inside the premises," he added.

In late April, the Special Task Force of the South district was assigned the job of tracking down such gangs and bringing them to book. In around 10 days, the special team busted three such cases, including another gambling racket, an illicit liquor supplier and a marijuana peddling ring.

The marijuana ring, busted in the Sangam Vihar area, was allegedly headed by a 50-year-old woman who had installed CCTV cameras in and around her shanty from where the dealings took place. She wrapped up her operation within seconds every time her informers, who were tasked with monitoring the footage, informed her of a police presence in the area, a senior official said.

In all three cases, the CCTV cameras were strategically positioned and well-covered with sacks, rugs and gunny bags, the lenses left exposed for unhindered surveillance.

After the South district, investigators in other police districts are also now developing intelligence on the same trend in areas under their jurisdiction, he added.


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