The Mumbai Police Crime Branch has arrested a gang of eight who specifically came down to Mumbai from other cities to make a quick buck by taking advantage of the massive crowds during Ganeshotsav. The accused were intercepted in Shivaji Nagar on Friday after the Unit VI of Crime Branch received a tip off on their movements.“We laid a trap at Lotus Junction in Shivaji Nagar and saw the accused approaching in an SUV. We tried to stop the vehicle, but they tried to speed away instead. Our team gave a chase and managed to overtake their SUV after a 10-minute chase,” a Crime Branch officer said. The vehicle was surrounded and all the occupants were taken to the Unit VI office for further questioning. “We also found two broken gold chains in their SUV and the accused confessed to have snatched them from women visiting pandals in Lalbaug on Thursday. We contacted the Kalachowkie police, under whose jurisdiction the area falls, and they confirmed that they had received two complaints of chain snatching from Lalbaug area on Thursday,” the officer said. The accused, residents of Ahmednagar and Beed districts, have reportedly confessed that they came to the city with the express intent of snatching chains and picking pockets during the festival, as the dense crowds would work to their advantage. The modus operandi, according to the officer, suggests they are habitual offenders. “The fact that they chose a location well away from their residences also indicates expertise and experience. We are checking if they have a past record, either in Mumbai or in their native districts,” the officer said.
Leander Paes and Radek Stepanek of Czech Republic entered the semi-finals in men’s doubles while another Indian Sania Mirza and her Romanian partner Horia Tecau sailed into the pre-quarterfinals of mixed doubles in the Wimbledon Championships on Thursday.Sania Mirza entered into the pre-quarterfinals of mixed doubles in the Wimbledon ChampionshipsFifth seeded Paes and Stepanek recorded an upset win over third seeds Daniel Nestor of Canada and Nenad Zimonjic of Serbia in a quarterfinal match. The Indo-Czech pair won 3-6 7-6 6-3 6-4 in the 152-minute contest.In the semi-finals, Paes and Stepanek take on the unseeded pair of Vasek Pospisil of Canada and Jack Sock of United States. Pospisil and Sock stunned the second seeded pair of Alexander Peya of Austria and Bruno Soares of Brazil 6-4 3-6 7-6 6-4 in another quarterfinal match.Meanwhile, Sania and Horia, seeded sixth, outplayed Mate Pavic and Bojana Jovanovski 6-3 6-3 in a rain-interrupted match that lasted 58 minutes.Rain had suspended play when the Indo-Romanian pair was leading 4-3 in the opening set in its second round contest but after resumption, Sania and Horia took little time to topple their opponents last night.It was a total domination on the part of Sania and Horia who won a total of 58 points as compared to just 35 by their rivals.The Indo-Romanian combo will now take on the 10th seeded pair of Jamie Murray and Casey Dellacqua.It was, however, curtains for Rohan Bopanna and his Czech partner Andrea Hlavackova as they lost their second round mixed doubles match.advertisementSeventh seeded Bopanna and Hlavackova conceded the opening set advantage to lose 6-3 5-7 3-6 against Russia’s Mikhail Elgin and Anastasia Rodionova of Australia.The two-hour and two-minute battle saw Bopanna and Hlavackova committing 11 unforced errors against six by the Russian-Australian combination.Bopanna’s campaign is over in Wimbledon as he had earlier lost in the men’s doubles with Pakistani partner Aisam-ul-haq Qureshi.