Assam: Tinsukia shopkeeper arrested for purchasing stolen goods
Assam: Tinsukia shopkeeper arrested for purchasing stolen goods

Tinsukia: The Tinsukia police has busted a gang of employees that targeted their workplace and arrested four persons, including owner of a local shop, for his alleged involvement in purchasing stolen goods.

The accused has been identified as Ashish Sureka, the owner of a shop located at AT Road. The alleged kingpin has been identified as Manoj Sah, a former employee of the complainant and currently employed by Ashish Sureka. 

The other two: Junas and Brijesh Gwala are employees of the complainant.

Talking to EastMojo, Officer-in-charge of Tinsukia police station Paragjyoti Buragohain said, “One Manoj Sah was caught red-handed with a timber cutting machine by residents of Chirwapatty locality around midnight a few days ago and was handed over to the police. Based on a police complaint, we arrested two more youths who were employees of the complainant.”

“During the preliminary investigation, the accused led the police to a shop, and police arrested its owner for his involvement in purchasing stolen goods,” Buragohain said, “The police arrested the shopkeeper, Ashish Sureka, from his shop,” he added.

Buragohain said that the police registered a case under section 380/34 of the Indian Penal Code and sent the accused to jail.

Responding to a question, Buragohain said, “This seems to be the tip of an iceberg and cannot be seen as an isolated case of theft. According to the complaint, the theft was going on at his premises for a quite long time and in a planned manner. We shall seek remand of the accused as the investigation would require them to establish links to unearth the entire gang.”

Buragohain appealed to shopkeepers to refrain from purchasing stolen goods or goods without a bill.

Meanwhile, there are reports of similar thefts at several shops, but due to lack of proof and other reasons, they have resisted filing police complaints.

The complainant, on the condition of anonymity, said Manoj Sah had been employed at his place for the past four years and was fired around five-six months ago for his involvement in multiple theft cases. 

He said, “On Tuesday, while working at this warehouse located inside his residential compound, Junas stole a machine valued between Rs 35,000 and 40,000 and dumped it in a neighbouring empty place, which was covered under jungle in such a manner that no one at our residence could know about it. He threw the machine across our boundary wall from the first floor. Late at night around 11.40 pm, he returned with Sah on a motorcycle to pick up the stolen goods.”

He further said, “This time, fortune did not favour them, and a few passer-by rounded them suspecting of ill-doings. In no time, a few locals gathered at the spot.”

“By the time I reached after being tipped off by one of the neighbours, Junas had fled. However, Sah was caught red-handed with the machine and his motorcycle. The incident has left me in deep shock with huge financial loss. The fault also lies with the shopkeepers who purchase stolen goods,” he added.

“This is not just an illegal act, but also unethical on part of those shopkeepers to purchase stolen goods, intentionally or unintentionally. Once they stop themselves from such practice, such employees won’t get a chance to sell such stolen products, and it will deter them from indulging in such criminal activities,” echoed Amit Bansal, a local shopkeeper and executive member of National Chamber of Commerce

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