Criminal elements in the city have found yet another way to rob people. Thanks to the ineptitude of the police, the criminals find the motorists caught in traffic jams become easy targets especially when motorists get stuck on the road due to knee deep water after heavy rain. They go about pointing guns at the car riders in traffic jams and relieve them of their cell phone, money and valuables. They generally go to each car one by one and knock at the window glass of the car by pointing their pistol and ask the driver to open the window then they boldly ask the occupants to handover their cell phone, wallet and any other valuable item they see in the car. If there are women in the car they also ask them for their jewellery they are wearing. During the recent rains in Karachi motorists have been robbed at many places especially after sunset. The situation turns more dangerous for the motorists and on the other hand becomes favourable for criminals when street lights also goes off at this time. On September 6 when it started raining heavily and people were returning to their homes after work motorists got stuck and many places in traffic jams and the criminals went about robbing people at Nursery, Natha Kahn Ghot and Lasbela crossing. The criminals know well that traffic jams occur when there is no police at the spot. So they go about fearlessly toting their guns at the helpless car riders who can neither run away nor leave their cars; they surrender their valuables to save their lives. Sadly, despite so many cases of this kind, the police have failed to arrest the culprits in the act for the simple reason that they are not there. On the other hand neither the government nor police authorities show their concern to provide protection to motorists against criminals even at the well known places where traffic jams takes place during heavy rains. Following preventive measures are suggested:- a. On noticing gathering of dark clouds if possible try to reach quickly at your destination before it starts raining. b. Select a route where there are no known sites of water pooling on the road to avoid getting stuck in traffic jam. c. Before moving make sure that your valuables like laptop, brief case, cell phone or any other item does not become visible to outsiders on the road. d. Women if wearing jewellery should remove it and hide somewhere inside their car but no in their purse. e. After leaving a little amount in your valet/purse hide your money and all other items such as NIC, credit card, ATM card etc, somewhere inside you car. But never keep any of these things in your pockets because criminals sometime force their victims to come out of their car for body search. f. If you get stuck in a traffic jam then keep all doors of your car locked and window glasses rolled up. But to get fresh air you may slide down the glasses for about two inches. g. If someone knocks at the window glass do not slide down the glass or open the door. If he points a gun at you then at first start honking the horn to attract the people around you. Many criminals leave immediately for fear of being caught. If this fails then remain calm, open the door and ask him what he wants. h. If he asks for your cell phone, valet etc; give him quietly without any resistance to save your life and life of other occupants of your car. i. Try to carry an unserviceable/discarded cell phone and give this to criminal on demand. While keep your actual cell phone on silent hiding in your car. Criminals do not bother to check cell phone as they are in hurry. j. Try to carry duplicate keys of your car because criminals sometime also take away key of the car with them in frustration. SQN LDR S.AUSAF HUSAIN, Karachi, September 10.