Shikrapur police are trying to solve a curious case. An SUV stolen from Koregaon Bhima in the early hours of October 7 was found abandoned in Ahmednagar district the next day — with its electronic systems missing and a note that the vehicle should be returned to its owner.
What is even more puzzling is that the side window glass that the suspect smashed to enter the car — as seen in security camera footage — was found replaced with a new glass.
The SUV is owned by Vijay Gavhane, who runs a tours and transport business in Koregaon Bhima village near Pune. At the time of theft, the SUV was parked near the house of Gavhane’s driver Ganesh Jadhav. On October 7, Jadhav got a call from a neighbour asking whether he was in the car as the door was open.
Jadhav rushed outside but before he could reach the vehicle, the suspect drove off at high speed, so did another car — suspected to be driven by his accomplice. Jadhav could not note the registration of the other car. He tried to chase the vehicle in another car but lost trail.
A complaint was registered at Shikrapur police station against unidentified suspects. Police started analysing footage of a security camera installed across the street where the SUV was parked. The suspect could be seen breaking the side window to get inside and is believed to have started the car by hot-wiring, which means starting it by bypassing the ignition switch. Police circulated the photo and information about the car on social media and alerted neighbouring police stations.
On October 8 night, Gavhane received a call from police in Ahmednagar district that his car was found abandoned on Daund-Ahmednagar highway, around 80 km from Koregaon Bhima. Police found a note written in Marathi on cardboard. The note read that “the car belongs to a tour and travel company in Koregaon Bhima in Pune. It has been stolen from Koregaon Bhima and should be returned to its owner”.
The central electronic control units, music system and speakers were stolen, but the side window smashed by the suspect had been replaced. It will be released to the owner after court formalities, police said. “We are yet to identify the suspects…While stealing the costly control unit and music system seem to be the motive, why did the suspects abandon it after replacing the broken glass?” an officer asked.
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