New Delhi: Inspector Arti Sharma is not just another Delhi Police officer. Veteran of many an operation, on Wednesday, she became the first woman to lead an all-male team to nab a criminal wanted for murder in the national capital.
Arti Sharma, 47, not only led the eight policemen to trap Arvind Sharma, but also showed alertness and courage when he tried to evade arrest and opened fire. In the process, one of her team-mates, head constable Shyam Lal, was injured.
Senior police officers have praised Sharma for her daring act. "She is the first woman inspector to lead a team. This is the first time in the history of Delhi Police that a team led by a woman police officer nabbed a wanted criminal who was involved in many serious crimes," Additional Commissioner of Police (Crime Branch)Ravindra Yadav said.
The government will be requested to give a gallantry award to Arti Sharma and her team, an officer said.
Giving details of Wednesday night's incident, Yadav said Arti Sharma and eight policemen laid a trap at 9:30 pm. at Janakpuri in west Delhi waiting for Arvind Sharma. Yadav said they had information that Arvind Sharma was to collect money from someone.
"He came in a black Santro car. Arti Sharma and her team immediately surrounded his car. However, he opened fire twice to evade arrest. In the firing, head constable Shyam Lal got injured. He received a bullet injury on his hand," Yadav said.
Lal is still in Deen Dayal Upadhaya Hospital in west Delhi. Arti Sharma said the team knew the criminal would be armed.
"We knew that he could open fire on us. So we went with full preparation. Two of our men were in bulletproof jackets with guns in their hands," Arti Sharma said. She said the police operation went for a few minutes.
"Women are not weak. They can do everything if they have confidence in themselves," she said. She has one piece of advice for women - don't be scared and face life with determination and courage.
A 1988 batch officer, Arti Sharma has been posted at the Crime Branch since Sep 2010. She has participated in various operations of the Crime Branch, but got a chance to lead the team for the first time Wednesday.
From Arvind Sharma, who was involved in seven cases of murder, attempt to murder and extortion, police recovered a .32 bore pistol and five cartridges. The government will be requested to give a gallantry award to Arti Sharma and her team, an officer said.