LAHORE - The Anti-Vehicle Lifting Staff (AVLS) of the Lahore police has miserably failed to track down dozens of gangs involved in auto-lifting incidents in the provincial capital.

Since January, Lahore has been witnessing a steep surge in the incidents of car-theft as several gangs of criminals are operating across the city with impunity.

Due to the poor performance of the AVLS, a special wing of the police supposed to control auto-theft, hundreds of citizens are deprived of their properties ever month in Lahore. According to some of the victims, the officials of the corruption-riddled police are part of the problem. Frequently, vehicles are being stolen from outside wedding halls, restaurants, shopping malls, and from the residences. But the police are unable to smash the gangs involved in this crime.

The story of Sher Muhammad, a resident of 63-Tipu Block New Garden Town is a case in point. The victim told the police that he had parked his car (LEC-12-7260) inside the garage on Thursday night. Unidentified robbers forced their entry into his house by breaking the locks of the main gate and drove away his car. The Garden Town police have registered the case (FIR No361/14) against unidentified criminals and are investigating with no arrest made so far. The case has been forwarded to the AVLS for further investigation. According to the victim, the gangsters easily managed to shut down the car-tracking system installed in the vehicle.

The provincial police reported more than 27,000 cases of vehicle-theft in 2013. The police also declared 12,000 cases as untraceable. Fifteen vehicles and 42 motorcycles are being lifted everyday from across the Punjab province.

The complainant has appealed to the Chief Minister and Punjab Inspector General of Police (IGP) to direct the concerned police officers for the recovery of his car.