|The entrance to OC Prabir Barick’s quarters, which were burgled on Thursday. Picture by Sanjoy Chattopadhyaya
Burglars broke into a police officer’s quarters at Gachhtala on Wednesday, taking away a laptop and three cell phones.
The quarters fall under the jurisdiction of Patuli police station, which was included in the Calcutta police area two years ago. Metro reported on Tuesday how the city’s fringe areas have become the most unsafe neighbourhoods.
The four home guards, who are supposed to keep a check on entry and exit of outsiders at the complex that is home to IPS officers, were in the dark about the robbery. It was the officer’s son who detected it after returning home from college around 6pm.
“Since the door was not bolted from inside, I thought my father had returned home,” said Sanket Barick, who lives in the apartment with his father Prabir Barick, the officer-in-charge of the security control office, an intelligence wing of the city police force. Prabir’s wife died last year.
“I saw the light in my father’s bedroom switched on. I called out to him but there was no response. So I entered his room and found the almirah ransacked,” Sanket said.
Prabir said he had “never thought burglars would dare enter the police quarters where I have been living for the past 25 years”. “The goons might have had a tip-off that the quarters would remain locked all day as our domestic help had gone to visit her relatives.”
“It seems the burglars were in a hurry…. A bag containing my daughter’s jewellery worth Rs 1.5 lakh was in the almirah but the burglars didn’t touch it,” the OC said.
The burglars took the staircase to reach the second-floor apartment and broke the lock on the main door.
“I was on duty till 1pm on Wednesday. I did not notice anyone entering the building. I don’t know what happened after that,” said Abinash Dey, one of the home guards.
A senior police officer in Lalbazar admitted that the crime graph on the fringes was soaring. “The areas in 17 police stations included under Calcutta police jurisdiction two years ago have been suffering from inadequate manpower and vehicles,” said the officer.
Pallab Kanti Ghosh, the joint commissioner of police (crime), said no one has been arrested for the theft.