These two thieves tried to pull off what would seem impossible: they tried to steal a 100KV transformer weighing nearly 700kg. And they attempted the Ripley’s-Believe-It-or-Not! act in broad daylight, in the full view of people watching or passing by.
They almost succeeded. They put the transformer on a truck and were about to leave the area when they were caught by police.
Posing as officials of power distribution company BSES Yamuna Power Ltd (BYPL), the robbers arrived in East Delhi’s Mandoli with a heavy-duty crane and a truck.
Residents thought they were discom officials who had come to take the transformer away for repairs as the crane plucked out the transformer and placed it on the truck. BYPL officials later said the thieves had even managed to disconnect the transformer.
“The proficiency of the robbers can be gauged from the fact that they managed to not only disconnect the 100KV transformer, carrying high-voltage current, but also succeeded in taking it away. Normally drug addicts and unscrupulous elements steal the iron fencing around transformers or drain its oil and sell it off to make a quick buck. But for the first time, robbers tried to cart away an entire transformer,” a BYPL spokesperson said.
Luckily, some BYPL officials happened to be in the area at that time and sensed something amiss. They alerted their superiors of an attempt to remove a transformer. Since they had not authorised the removal of any transformer in the area, BYPL’s senior operation and maintenance team rushed to the spot. “But by the time they reached the spot, the thieves had succeeded in removing the transformer, loaded with heavy current, placed it on the truck and left the place,” the spokesperson said.
Police was alerted and a search was mounted for the truck, which was found parked some distance away. The robbers were in the truck. They were arrested.
The discom on Tuesday urged consumers to immediately alert the BYPL or the police “if they notice any suspicious activity around its distribution network”.
“Fiddling with the network by unscrupulous elements can not only be a safety hazard but can also impact an area’s power supply,” an official said.