Armed guards for tomatoes in India as prices rise

LOLWUT?

Guard in front of tomatoes 

The price of tomatoes has risen so much in India that armed guards have been deployed to protect shipments of them in one state.

The Hindustan Times on Sunday cited a wholesaler at a market in the city of Indore, in Madhya Pradesh state, saying that the security of tomatoes was of “considerable concern” because of their “skyrocketing” prices.

The wholesaler said the administrators of the Devi Ahilya Bai Holker market had appointed half a dozen armed guards to keep the tomatoes safe – particularly when they are being unloaded from trucks.

There have been reports elsewhere in the country this month of thieves making off with tonnes of tomatoes worth thousands of rupees.

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Pens are items of common ownership

Think about it – no-one thinks anything about keeping a pen they’ve borrowed from someone else – and most people don’t get all upset about someone borrowing a pen but not returning it. Heck, that’s even been the basis of a comedy sketch:

People always forget to return them, and accumulate them from everywhere, and few people have any qualms about lending them to others, even though oftentimes, that means they won’t ever get them back; few care…

A Surprising Number of Bank Robbers Use Mass Transit for Their ‘Getaway’

So civic-minded…

Just yesterday a man (allegedly) robbed $500 from a bank in metro Philadelphia only to get apprehended on a SEPTA bus. The same thing happened to a bank thief (alleged) in British Columbia in late April; a bus driver noticed a passenger acting “a little strange” — he cut in front of a wheelchair to board, then stashed some clothes under a seat — and told the police. Late last year, a man was arrested on the Long Island Railroad carrying a cash register from a robbery (alleged-ish) the night before.

The recent spate is not unique. If headlines are any indicator, 2012 was a banner year for transit-riding-bank robbers. A man (allegedly) held up a bank in Cambridge, Massachusetts, only to be caught on an MBTA bus after the teller slipped a GPS device into the bag. Meanwhile a metro Boston woman (allegedly) hit a series of banks, taking the bus from one heist to the next. A man was stopped on the D.C. Metro after (allegedly) robbing a bank in Washington, and the same thing happened to a Portland bank robber who boarded the MAX light rail system right after his (alleged) crime.

The trend seemed to pick up after the market crash. Back in late 2007, a St. Paul man robbed a bank (allegedly) and, perhaps realizing the flaw in his plan, tried to “hail” a Metro Transit bus. The Twin Cities got hit again in 2009, when a Minneapolis man held up a bank (allegedly) for $3,760 then was arrested on a bus carrying $3,740; he’d used $20 for a fare card. He hadn’t purchased a fare card ahead of time. A metro Atlanta bank robber didn’t even make it on board in 2008; after flubbing the (alleged) crime, he was caught waiting for a MARTA bus. After a bank robber (alleged) in San Jose was caught on a light rail train in 2010, a police spokesman said the transit getaway was “not something I’ve heard of before.”

Must be a rookie.

It’s not just a digital-age-bizarre-news-loving thing. A quick scan of the New York Times archive brings up the case of Annie Cobbins of Providence back in 1979. Cobbins (allegedly) held up Industrial National’s main branch one morning, then made her way to a Rhode Island Public Transit Authority bus stop a few steps from the bank entrance. She was nabbed on board two minutes later, according to the Associated Press. “There are getaway cars and there are getaway cars,” said one police official.