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Saturday, September 24, 2011

Cops: Don’t hire Nepali help

Nepali Union objects to move by Mumbai police, calls it discriminatory. Cops justify move saying it's difficult to screen people from across the border; in last year cops have arrested seven nationals of Nepal in connection with robbery and murder cases

    Mumbai police is advising households against employing Nepalese domestic helps after a series of robberies and murders involving Nepali nationals. 
    While the move has come in for sharp criticism from the Nepali Union in Mumbai, Mumbai police believes that since it is difficult to screen migrants from other countries, it will be advisable if people who have spent considerable time in Mumbai were preferred as domestic help, especially by senior citizens staying alone. 
    Deputy Commissioner of Police, zone 11, Mahesh Patil and his counterpart in zone 9, Pratap Dighavkar, have begun communicating with housing societies in western suburbs warning them of dangers of employing Nepalese house helps. 
    Domestic helps from Nepal have been found involved in eight cases of robberies and murders this year alone. These cases include three house-breakings in Borivli, a murder-robbery in Santacruz where an elderly woman was killed, and another robbery and double-murder in Juhu. 
    Seven Nepali house helps are in police custody in robbery and murder 
cases that took place this year. 
    DCP (Zone XI) Mahesh Patil said while the police department does not believe in racial profiling, involvement of Nepali nationals in robberies and murders is posing peculiar problems for the force. "One, we have found that many of the Nepali nationals arrested had links with Maoist insurgency in Nepal. Also, since we do 
not have an extradition treaty with Nepal, arresting them and bringing them to face legal proceedings here is difficult," he said. 
    Information collected from arrested Nepali nationals reveals that some of them are repeat offenders. "Since we can't chase them to Nepal, they spend six months to a year in Nepal after committing a crime and then 
return for more," said another officer who did not wish to be identified. 
    DCP Dighavkar, the brain behind the one-society-one-cop drive, said his men are advising households to hire people who have been around in Mumbai for some years. "If people who have lived in Mumbai for a considerable period of time commit a crime, it's easier to trace them. But if
somebody crosses the border and then returns within, say six months, after committing a crime, it's difficult to trace him." 
    Dighavkar said senior citizens staying alone must take extra care when employing servants. "It will help if they hire local domestic helps. It's easier to screen these people," he added. 
    The head of Nepali Union, Master Thappa, said it would be wrong to tarnish the community for the mistake of a few of its members. "We admit that there have been many crimes in the city in which Nepali people are involved. We are ready to cooperate with the police. If they have problems in tracing a Nepali who has escaped to his native place we will help them," he said.

Ramsingh and Teksingh were working at the Juhu household of Kavita Suchak, for five years. They have now been arrested and, police say have confessed to killing her for money. Right: Jay Jagdish building at Suvarna Nagar where Suchak lived

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