Concern: Several commuters have fallen prey to pickpockets while boarding buses. Image Credit: GN Archives

Dubai: The Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) is planning to beef up security in Dubai bus stations by installing cameras after a string of thefts and pickpocketing incidents.

“As part of our future plans to maintain security and safety we will be installing cameras in bus stations,” an RTA spokesperson told XPRESS.

Several commuters have told XPRESS that they have fallen prey to pickpockets in recent weeks, especially while boarding buses in the evening at the busy Satwa bus depot.

“I realised my wallet was gone the moment I stepped on to a bus. It had my entire one month’s salary of Dh1,000, my emirates ID and labour card. I lodged a police complaint immediately but I am not sure if I will ever get back what I have just lost,” said Aslam Khan, 37, who works in a printing press as a machine operator.

“It happened on a Thursday, exactly a week after my friend’s wallet was nicked from the same spot. He had about Dh400,” added the man from Pakistan.

Bangladeshi plumber Raqibul Islam says his brand new mobile was stolen the day he had bought it while waiting for a bus at the same depot in the evening just last month.

“It was a Friday evening and we were all waiting in a queue to board the bus when I felt someone push me deliberately. As soon as I recovered, I realised my phone was gone and by the time I turned around to see who pushed me, the thief had already disappeared,” said the 34-year-old.

The RTA says they are yet to receive a formal complaint about thefts in Satwa station during the first half of 2014 but have registered as many as 106 reports on lost and found items including money, phones, handbags, cards and passports during the same period.

“The Buses Department is authorised to receive all lost and found items, but for thefts the police has to be directly contacted. There are security guards 24 hours spread over morning and night shifts at the Satwa station. Besides, there are members of the police at the station to maintain security and safety,” said the spokesperson.

The Satwa Bus depot along with the ones in Al Ghubaiba (Bur Dubai) and Gold Souq are the busiest bus stations in Dubai.