Five armed assailants struck a Bharat Petroleum petrol pump in Sector 35 here early Monday morning and robbed over Rs 25 lakh from the cash counter.
The petrol pump, adjacent to a UP Roadways bus depot and near the City Centre Metro station, had 23 employees at the time of the robbery, according to the police.
A staff member, Amit, said that a Santro car with five persons in it arrived at the 24-hour petrol pump around 7 a.m. “They asked for water and I directed them to the water cooler in the office. Nobody noticed when they went upstairs to the cash office.”
Said the cashier, Surinder Singh: “Five persons entered the room while three of us were at the first floor office counting cash to deposit in the bank later. They were carrying pistols and daggers.”
Singh said the assailants tied them all and took the cash.
According to Singh, at the time of robbery, there was Rs 26.34 lakh in cash at the petrol pump because of earnings from Saturday and Sunday.
Senior Superintendent of Police A.K. Singh, however, suspects the robbery to be an inside job.
“There were 23 people working there at the time of incident. The robbery took place within minutes of the cash being taken out from the locker for counting,” he said.
“Involvement of some staff members is suspected and we are questioning them.”
The SSP said that a manhunt has been launched to capture the robbers.
Superintendent of Police A.K. Tripathi said the Santro car was black and had Delhi registration number.
“The robbers were about 22-25 years old. Employees could not see them properly,” he said, adding the CCTV cameras at the pump weren’t functioning at the time of the incident.
“Had the CCTV cameras been working, we could have identified the robbers through the footage,” he said.
Computer sketches, however, were being prepared according to the description given by the employees, he added.