VELLORE: Two-wheeler thieves and illegal sand miners are having a field day in Gudiyattam town as they are helped by non-functional CCTV cameras which were sponsored by the trading community, sources revealed.
Traders who spoke t on condition of anonymity (not wanting to antagonise the police) said “we chipped in and provided nearly Rs 18 lakh with which 98 cameras were placed in various areas of the town to ensure proper coverage and to aid police in preventing thefts and nabbing the culprits.”
“Though a control room was established a picture taken there shows most of the rectangles – each linked to a camera – are blank. The public are irked as in addition to police refusing to accept complaints also provide no help in preventing thefts,” said Rajamohan of the Chittoor gate area.
The town station covers a population of slightly more than two lakhs and has some of the busiest areas in its jurisdiction. Two wheeler thefts are common as they are stolen from the government hospital, bazaar, Sandapet, Nethaji chowk, Uzhavar Sandhai and regular market areas which are crowded.
Sources revealed that stolen two wheelers find a ready market across the border in villages in Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka while within the district, they are sought after by anti-socials and those involved in illicit distillation in Gudiyattam and Pernambut areas as they cannot be apprehended even if the vehicles are traced.
“When police in all places use CCTV cameras to identify culprits we wonder why in Gudiyattam alone this facility is given a short shrift? Is it to allow anti socials a free rein in this prosperous town” demands a trader.
When contacted Gudiyattam DSP Ramamoorthy said CCTV were non-functional as overhead wires were cut by passing lorries and that work was on to restore them.
Vellore SP S Rajesh Kannan was unreachable, while, Vellore Range DIG Anne Vijay said “I will have to check on the issue, as this is the first I am hearing it.”