Locals say robberies on the rise in Rangoon

Oct 1, 2008 (DVB), Residents of Rangoon division say that the number of robberies and muggings is on the rise in local townships, but authorities are currently failing to catch those responsible.

Last week, a computer university student was stabbed and robbed at her house on Nawaday road, Dagon township.

She later died from her injuries in Rangoon general hospital, but the culprit has not yet been apprehended, a Rangoon resident said.

"It happened at 4pm on the third floor of the staircase. He stabbed, grabbed her purse and ran away. Now she is dead," he said.

"They grab necklaces in the middle of Myenigone town centre. It is worse in Insein."

In nearby Thanlyin, a local resident said there were burglaries on a daily basis and an increase in petty theft.

"Houses and shops are being burgled. There is a rise in motorcycle theft," the resident said.

"Our local ward authority chairman’s motorcycle was stolen, and three adjoining shops were burgled on three consecutive nights, but no one has been arrested."

Many children cannot afford to go to school or have to work during school hours, collecting plastic and rubbish to sell, while others are reportedly being used as agents for petty crime.

The Thanlyin resident said that poverty was driving many people to beg or steal.

"Children are forced by adults to steal and the latter sell the stolen goods. Fish and prawns are stolen from the shopping baskets of housewives," she said.

"If they could eat without stealing who would steal?"

DVB contacted the authorities to discuss the issue but they declined to comment.

Reporting by Naw Say Phaw

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