Think crime. What comes to your mind? Guns, knives, dark alleys. The weapon may differ but there is something that’s commonplace - darkness. Crimes usually happen when no one is watching or when no one is able to watch. It is the cover of darkness that gives the predator on the prowl advantage over its prey.
Dwarka, according to residents, is home to several dark stretches due to the absence of proper lighting in various sectors. The road from Master Plan road 201 towards Sector 7 through Brahma society and Gokul Garden, the stretch from Sector 6/10 red light towards DAV School in Sector 6 and the road from Sector 10 towards the metro station in the sector are just to name a few. Roads in Sector 12, the back lanes in Sector 5, stretch on Master Plan road in front of DDA Pocket 2 in Sector 19, and the road from Kargil Chowk to Sector 20 through cremation ground tell a similar story. The road from the metro station in Sector 10 towards Sector 11, the service roads in sectors 1,2,5, 6 and 9,10,11,12; and back lanes in sectors 5, 10, 22 and 23 are no different either.
Sumitra Das, a resident of Sector 6, was a victim of a chain-snatching incident. Once, when she was returning to her society from Sector 6 market through the stretch near DAV school, a person pushed her and snatched her chain. She said, “Despite the chain-snatcher being on foot, I could not see the face as there was no light.”
Another woman, Priya, was a victim of a purse-snatching incident when she was returning from metro station in Sector 10. She also cited the insufficient lighting on the road as the cause for the crime.
According to Subhash Singh, a resident of Sector 14, “The stretch from Sector 14 metro station towards residential pockets of the sector is under complete darkness and is a hotbed for incidents of snatching. Even the parking area at the metro (station) is dark.”
Mahesh Gupta, general secretary of RWA, DDA, Sector 5, said, "The back lane here is without streetlights, which is posing a threat to the security in the area. Miscreants and hooligans drink openly on the stretch. The bulbs installed in the poles do not function. We have written many letters to the authorities but to no avail. The security in Vivekanand, Ganinath, Palam and Himanchal societies is under threat."
According to residents, the 30-metre and 45-metre road in Sector 12 have poor lighting. Manish Kumar, a resident of the sector, said, “Once, while I was returning from office late in the evening, I was beaten up, and my purse, watch and mobile were snatched. The incident happened in the back lane of my society. I feel that the absence of streetlights is the main reason (for such crimes).”
The DDA, however, has a different story to tell. Mahipal Singh, deputy director of public relations, said, “According to the information gained from the chief engineer, Dwarka, in this regard, the roads are full of light these days. Sometimes due to rain and storm, there may be problem but that is also repaired at the earliest.”