On Thursday, a gang of conmen made away with Rs 37 lakh in a bag from a car in south Mumbai after its occupant’s opened the door to pick up a few 10-rupee notes they told him had fallen on the road outside.
Around 5pm on Thursday, Hitesh Sanghvi, 45, a property broker, was waiting in a car in Fort’s Apna Bazaar area for his realtor friend Jagdish Ghadiya, 57, and his wife who had gone into a building nearby to discuss a property deal. Ghadiya, a Mulund resident, had left a bag with Rs 37 lakh on the rear seat.
Police quoted Sanghvi as saying a man in his 30s told him some money was lying on the road just beside the car. Sanghvi opened the door and bent to collect the notes, when another man opened the rear door, grabbed the bag and fled, with the first man. Sanghvi raised an alarm but it was too late.
The MRA Marg police said that to get people to open their cars and to divert their attention, the gangsters’ trick was to drop some money on the road and then ask their chosen target if they had dropped it. Preliminary probe showed a gang of three was at work. They were members of a larger gang that regularly plays on people’s greed .
“We have come to know that there were at least three people involved and that they had tried the same trick on three other motorists, before they got lucky with Sanghvi,” said Padmakar Juikar, senior inspector of MRA Marg police station.
“We have a detailed description of the accused from Sanghvi and the other motorists and we should catch them soon,” he added.
The police said they were scanning footage from closed-circuit television cameras installed outside a Bank of Maharashtra branch located at the same junction.