INDIANS who are studying medicine in Davao City expressed their alarm over the spate of burglaries in their area, which have made them feel unsafe.
A group of Indian students sought audience with Sun.Star Davao last week hoping that authorities would listen to their concerns.
Jen, not her real name, reported the series of burglaries in that took place in El Rio Subdivision, Mineral Village, Marfori Heights Subdivision, Doña Vicenta, Garcia Heights and Fatima Village, where Indian students of Davao Medical School Foundation (DMSF), Inc. reside.
She said the unidentified burglars usually attack at night when they are sleeping or even in broad daylight when they are in school or attending their clerkships.
It was her first time last June 2 to experience burglary but she said that there were several incidents that already happened in other areas where Indians are staying.
Jen said she and her four housemates slept late, around 1 a.m., on June 2 and got up 3 a.m. to find some of their personal belongings gone. Stolen were one laptop, a mobile phone, a wallet, and her watch.
“Few people said that they heard a noise at the gate by 2 a.m. so they thought that it was us who passed by but it wasn’t us because we were all sleeping at that time,” she said.
A similar incident transpired at her friend's apartment, where money and a laptop were also stolen.
“My bedroom was open. The person might have come inside while I was sleeping. My friend and I were sleeping on that bed and we have a table beside the bed there I have my iPad and my watch. He came there and took all those stuff but there was no noise,” she added.
Unfortunately, there was no closed circuit television (CCTV) in their apartment, thus, the difficulty in identifying the burglar.
They urged the city government of Davao and the police to look into the increasing cases of burglary.
They suggested that police also patrol subdivisions, aside from major roads. They said they often see police vehicles parked on the main road, but they do not see these going around the inner streets.
Jen said they no longer expect to recover the items that they lost, but they want the burglaries to stop.
“If these things happened one or two times then it's fine. A lot of Indians have complained and this particular kind of incident has been happening each and every day. Every Indian is losing something," she said.
They also noted that the targets are female Indians, thus, they are seeking more protection from the government.
“It’s better if the government and the police give attention and more protection to these places like making rounds at night so it will be safe for us,” she said.
Intensified police patrol
In an interview Tuesday, June 12, Davao City Police Office (DCPO) director Police Senior Superintendent Alexander Tagum assured the Indian community that they will look into their concern.
“Lahat ng crime incidents are being closely monitored by our office including the actions taken, counter-measures implemented and immediate apprehensions of criminals. Weekly ang Enhanced Managing Police Operations namin dito sa HQs,” he said.
There is already a police vehicle deployed to conduct regular patrol in their areas.
“We have a 24/7 Mobile Patrol Unit in their vicinity to ensure their security and safety. I also directed my chief investigator to validate this info and to direct the station commander of San Pedro to immediately act on this and initiate counter measures,” he said.
He also raised the concern to San Pedro Police Station Police Chief Inspector Ramil Macarampat, who promised to personally look into the matter.
In a separate interview, Macarampat said they arrested three suspects of robbery/ hold-up incidents in the area.
One was released for being a minor while the two others were detained.
Macarampat also said their station received a complaint from Indian students. He said he raised the possibility that fellow students were behind the theft since there were no signs of forced entry in the affected apartments.