ATM thieves do their business on holidays and weekends, when the customer friendly banks keep extra cash in their machines.
In the past one year, any unguarded automatic-tellermachine kiosk near a closed bank here was unsafe. A quick reconnaissance and the gangs strike. On March 22, 2015, a Sunday, a State Bank of India ATM at the Maqsudan vegetable market here was opened with gas cutters and cleaned of rs 24 lakh, a few metres from a police station.
On June 14, 2015, another Sunday, rs 3.24 lakh stolen from the HDFC Bank ATM at Dhingria village near Adampur. The theft came to light the next day when the bank opened.
On September 25, 2015, a holiday on account of Eid, a gang of three, including a woman, decamped with `4.46 lakh from a Punjab National Bank ATM at Sarhali village on the Jandiala Phagwara road, 25 kilometres from here; September 26, being the last Saturday of the month, was also a holiday.
On November 14, 2015, a closed Saturday, UCO Bank women’s branch at Guru Gobind Singh Avenue here lost rs 12.10 lakh in an ATM burglary. The branch is in a thickly populated residential area, with a police post nearby. On January 16 this year, a Union Bank of India ATM was emptied on the birth anniversary of Guru Gobind Singh. Assistant manager Vijay Kumar said the bank had loaded rs 7 lakh in the machine on Friday, since it didn’t want to harass its customers for cash on Saturday and Sunday.