In December 2007 I had gone to Mumbai to attend an official meeting. I wanted to use this trip to also look up my flat, which I had purchased way back in year 1997. After having purchased the ticket I waited for the train. Finding the approaching train too crowded, I immediately shifted my wallet from my back pocket to the front one of my blue jeans. I do that whenever I find a bus, train or any other public place overcrowded just to reduce the chances of it being flicked. Having done that I generally keep my hand in the pocket itself. I was doing the same, this time too.
To get inside the crowded Mumbai local train, you have to use your muscle power, employing both your arms, so it was not my sweet will to continue keeping my hand in the pocket while getting inside the train. My hand had come out briefly from my pocket in jostling with the crowd while getting in. The train had started moving as the total halt at a suburban station is about ten seconds only. After finding a convenient corner, the first thing I did was to check my wallet. Well it was gone and gone with it were Rs 20,000/- (18 crisp notes of Rs 1000 denomination and rest in hundreds). I was dumb struck to find only my handkerchief in my left pocket. I did not find it prudent to shout, as I could guess that the job was done while I was boarding the train and the guy who pulled out my wallet, might have stayed back. Next I checked my right front pocket where I had kept my mobile phone. Thankfully it was in place. I took it out and rang up my son at Delhi and asked him to immediately block my credit card. I was foolishly not only carrying a large amount of cash in my wallet but also some cards including my credit card, and my office identity card.
I got down at the next station and returned back to the same place where I had boarded the train. I looked around the place. I had heard that the modus operandi of the pick pockets is to chuck the wallet away after taking out the money to avoid getting caught red handed. There was no sign of any wallet. I went straight to the Railway Police station and lodged a complaint. I obtained a copy of the complaint listing out the articles which I had lost to help me obtain duplicate or fresh ones.
I was penniless in Mumbai for some time but luckily, in addition to having a few fast friends there, on whom I could depend for financial help in such a crisis, a colleague from our office was also there to attend the meeting. Even other officers who had come to attend the meeting from other offices and were staying in the same hotel, offered to help me after listening to my experience. I found it more convenient to request my colleague from my office to pay my hotel bills through his credit card and also borrowed some money from him for my pocket expenses.
I have come back to my city and am hoping against hopes that the 'pick pocket ji' may be kind enough to use a fraction of the booty that he got from my wallet and send my belongings to my present address which has been prominently given on my office Identity Card.