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Gohana heist: Cops to approach court

punjab Updated: Nov 03, 2014 17:35 IST
Sat Singh

Faced with a difficult situation of restoring stolen ornaments to locker holders of Gohana-based Punjab National Bank, the police who have recovered over 43-kg ornaments from different locations of Sonepat district have decided to approach a local court for its distribution.

Robbers had sneaked into the PNB strong room on October 25 by making digging a more than 80-ft tunnel from a nearby unused building. The police had held four suspects, identified as Satish, Balraj, Arvind and Surender. Out of 90 lockers, 77 were found tempered with in which customers had stored their valuables.

Mahipal Banwala, the mastermind of the robbery and the owner of the unused building, had committed suicide. “The police have recovered 43-kg ornaments (gold and silver have not been segregated) from four different locations in Sonepat and Rohtak districts, but the affected customers of the bank have claimed over 80-kg ornaments,” said Gohana DSP Rajeev Deshwal.

Deshwal, who was first to reach the crime spot after the robbery was reported to the police said all the recovered ornaments were sealed in the presence of a committee of five people from among affected customers, a duty magistrate and a DSP-rank official.

He said besides, the entire process was videographed and also captured through still photography to maintain transparency.

On the distribution of ornaments, Rohtak range IGP Anil Kumar Rao said the police are exercising utmost care and swiftness in recovering the valuables under a team constituted for the purpose, but the distribution of ornaments would be done under the supervision of court.

Hunt on for other suspects

Police sources said after the interrogation of four arrested youths of Katwal village, the police are have hastened the search for more suspects, who are believed to have worked as accomplices of those held.

A senior police official said the police are scanning the movement of PNB officials and their involvement cannot be ruled out.

“Rajesh Duhan, a native of Katwal village and a co-accused, is still at large. Once he is arrested more names related to the heist can come out,” he added.


October 25 night
: Burglary at Punjab National Bank’s Gohana branch by digging more than 80-ft tunnel.

October 27: Bank official detect robbery after the bank opened on Monday; case registered with police.

October 30: Three suspects — Satish, Balraj and Surender — arrested, while mastermind Mahipal Banwala committed suicide.

November 1: The police recover 43-kg gold from four locations in Sonepat and Rohtak districts.