Vrindavan, 2017.10.05 (VT): Devotees visiting Vrindavan for Kartik should keep a close eye on their belongings. Pickpockets are stalking the markets and temples looking for a chance to steal.
Not only busy areas are affected. Pickpockets also strike on slow nights in the not-so-busy bazaar, when devotees have their guard down.
Recently a devotee, who prefers to remain anonymous, had her purse stolen in Vrindavan’s Loi Bazar. “I was not paying attention,” she says, “And the expert thief was able to put his hand inside the bag and take my things easily without my knowledge.”
Another devotee had her purse stolen in a temple on a festival day. After reporting the matter to the temple administration, she was told that the chor dal (gang of thieves) always hits the temple on major festival days. A third devotee says that two phones were swiped from him by a person who was sitting extremely close to him on a packed auto rickshaw.
Devotees are advised to stay alert and be aware of people – be it a man, woman or child – standing too close to you. The pickpocketing problem is likely to increase as more devotees from around the world visit Vrindavan during Kartik.