In what appears to be a bid to break open an ATM of Indian Bank on the Barwala road in Dera Bassi, the robbers battered the security guard to death late on Saturday night. The victim, Bihar native Alam Khan, 50, was not the regular guard at this ATM, and happened to be filling in for co-worker who had gone on leave.
Though no money was stolen as the machine could not be opened, the Khan's blood-smeared body was found a few feet away from the spot, where the attackers had tried to conceal it in dry grass. The police are investigating the matter from the personal enmity angle too after registering a murder case against the unidentified killers. Forensic experts and a dog squad came in, while the CCTV camera footage is being examined. Sources said the investigations so far indicated there were two robbers wearing face-covering 'monkey' caps. They stayed at the spot for at least 10 minutes, as caught in the three CCTV cameras.
Superintendent of police (detective) Balwinder Singh Brar told the media, "Two masked youth entered the ATM counter at 1.06am and attacked the guard, who was sleeping on the chair, with a steel rod, hammer and knife on his head. They hit him five times on his head and dragged him for a distance of 30 feet before returning after three minutes." One of the youths then sat on the chair, posing as a security guard to avoid suspicion, while the other went inside. Meanwhile, the alarm blew and both men fled at 1.16am, said the SP. Tools used for the attack were also recovered from the spot.
While SP Brar said the motive of the assailants did not appear to be robbery as the ATM was found "fully safe with no marks to break it", station house officer Gurwant Singh later said the police would investigate "from all angles". The cops may insist on the personal enmity angle, but bank manager ML Garg also said the robbers fled the ATM only after the alarm went off.
Deceased Khan hailed from Betia district in Bihar and worked as security guard on the rolls of private firm HPL. He was on duty in place of security guard Kuldip Singh, 48, who was on leave for Saturday and Sunday to attend the wedding of his nephew in Kangra, Himachal Pradesh. Khan is survived by his wife, four daughters and three sons. His body was kept for post-mortem at the civil hospital after informing his family, police said.