An assistant sub-inspector (ASI) of the Mansa police was arrested and dismissed from service on Wednesday after he allegedly robbed a goldsmith of 1-kg gold (valued at more than Rs 26 lakh).
Birender Kumar, a goldsmith, told the police that he was waiting at the local bus stand to board a bus for Bathinda on Wednesday morning when he was approached by ASI Angrez Singh, posted at Bhikhi police station.
The complainant said Angrez posed as an officer of the CIA (crime investigation agency) staff from Barnala district and asked him to get into his car for questioning. Birender added: “I travelled with him for around half an hour. On nearing the highway, the ASI started threatening me with dire consequences if I failed to cooperate with him. I called up my friend, who spoke to the ASI. Angrez told him that for any ‘settlement’, we would have to meet him at the Barnala police station. He then snatched my cellphone, 1-kg gold biscuit and about Rs 500.”
In the afternoon, Birender and his friends were informed that CCTV footage of a shop near the bus stand had captured his meeting with the cop. The goldsmith informed deputy superintendent of police (DSP) Rupinder Bharadwaj, who arrived at the shop and examined the footage. However, the ASI was not arrested till late evening as Bharadwaj held a closed-door meeting at city-2 police station with about three station house officers.
Late in the evening, the ASI was called in city 2 police station and was persuaded to return the robbed gold biscuit. Despite repeated persuasion the cop initially denied of his involvement in the case. “He was shown the video footage where I was seen sitting next to him in his car, but he denied of having robbed me,” said Birender who anxiously waited for around three hours before the cop admitted of having committed the offence. All this while senior police officers including SSP Raghbir Singh Sadhu and DSP Rupinder Bharadwaj remained tight-lipped about the incident. “We persuaded him to handover the robbed golden item and he later agreed to it,” a senior officer said on the condition of anonymity.
Angrez was booked under sections 382 (theft after preparation made for causing death, hurt or restraint in order to the committing of the theft) and 419 (punishment for cheating by personation) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC). The accused cop had been booked in a fake currency case around seven years ago but was later acquitted.
Senior superintendent of police (SSP) Raghbir Singh Sandhu later informed that the cop has been dismissed from the police force.