14 February, 2019
An unpleasant truth in most of India’s cities today is the mugging that happens in the neighborhood. There are many instances of people going for walks in the community, and being mugged of their valuables like phones, gold ornaments, or other such valuables. Senior citizens are especially an easy target in such cases, as these people often use the surprise element or the getting familiar tactic to commit their crimes.
Chain and mobile snatching from people who are out on walks, or doing some neighborhood shopping chores, etc., are very common in most cities. The loss of the valuables apart, what is most alarming in a few cases, is the bodily harm done to the people. There are many cases where the people have been attacked with a knife, causing grievous hurt. So, how can one counter such issues and take care to avoid or counter them? Here are a few things to keep in mind, to stay safe.
Watch the walks
If you go for walks either in the morning, or evening, there are a couple of things that you need to keep in mind. One is to ensure that you choose a safe and slightly crowded area, rather than a place entirely devoid of man movement. This is also true with respect to the timings, quite early in the morning and rather late in the evening, when it’s fully dark is also not a good time to go walking, unless there is a company. It is always better to go for walks in a small group, as that can help socialize as well.
It is also better to either not wear any valuables, like gold chains or rings, watches, bangles, etc. while going for walks. Without your knowing, it is quite possible that you are being watched for a few days before the people decide to attack you. At best, if you are wearing chains, please ensure that it is covered up properly and not visible enough for people to reach out.
If you carry phones, you should be careful not to hold it to your ears and keep talking as you keep walking. If someone approaches from behind, you may not be aware, and they can easily snatch the phone. Carry the phone, if you must, as it is entirely possible, that you may want to reach out to family in case of an emergency. However, make sure that it is inside a pocket or a small pouch or handbag. Also, if you have to attend calls, stop or sit down somewhere and take the call and be vigilant about what is happening around you. Also, please make sure that you have a lock for the phone to unlock it like a code, or a pattern, or a fingerprint, etc. This can ensure that in the worst event of your phone being mugged, you will at least ensure that the person will have to struggle to get in unlocked and in the meantime, possibly the police can trace it.
The other thing is to keep a strict vigil if any strangers approach you asking for help in finding an address etc. They get familiar talking to you for a few minutes, just so you lose guard and then suddenly attack you. Hence, it is better to keep a watch out.
Unless you are walking around in safe and guarded vicinity like a park inside your own community, complex, etc., it is always better to keep a vigil. Look out for suspicious characters, especially those who loiter and hang around in a bike. Usually, it is seen that these people come in bikes and race away after snatching the phones and valuables.
The other way is to keep yourself ready for the worst scenario of being attacked by taking self-defense classes. Self-defense classes are available in most cities nowadays. And considering the rising amount of such crimes, especially on women and seniors, special classes are available for such groups. These classes are available at reasonable rates and are not extremely tough or strenuous to handle. They teach you how to be prepared to counter such attacks, and try not just to stay safe, but also to spoil such attacks if possible. The more people are aware of such issues, and the more people counter it, the better it is for society.
The other way is also to keep your neighborhood police informed about such incidents happening. They usually deploy some special squads to watch the areas, especially during the times, when the incidents are reported to happen. Many muggers have been caught with such vigilance, and it can help make the neighborhood a safer place.
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