NEWDELHI: Two bike-borne assailants shot and injured the security guard of a cash replenishment company van and decamped with a bag containing over ₹12 lakh from outside a private bank ATM booth in northwest Delhi’s Bhalswa Dairy on Friday afternoon.
The guard, Manoj, sustained a bullet injury in his abdomen. He was admitted to Babu Jagjivan Ram hospital, from where he was referred to Lok Nayak hospital. The condition of Manoj, who is in his early 50s, is stated to be critical. A case of attempt to murder and armed robbery was filed at the Bhalswa Dairy police station against unknown robbers.
According to Milind Dumbre, deputy commissioner of police (north-west), the robbery took place around 4 pm, when the cash van staff reached outside an ATM booth in main Bhalswa market to refill the machine. Apart from Manoj, there were three more staff in the van.
The custodians of the cash van, Vipin and Saurabh, came out of the vehicle with a bag containing money. As they moved towards the ATM booth, Manoj, who was carrying a rifle, gave them security cover. As the ATM booth was small and could accommodate only one person, Vipin went inside to refill the machine and pulled down the shutter. Manoj stood outside, while Saurabh returned to the van and sat with driver Rajveer.
Around 4 pm, two men wearing helmets arrived on a Pulsar motorcycle. They parked the bike and went towards the ATM booth outside which Manoj was standing. One of them took out a pistol, pointed it on Manoj’s head and threatened to shoot him if he moved, said a police officer.
“The other robber tried to open the shutter. Manoj tried to stop him, but the first robber shot him in his abdomen. He collapsed after the bullet pierced through his stomach. The assailants then opened the shutter, snatched the cash bag from Vipin on gunpoint and fled on their motorcycle,” said police.
As the bag was open, some bundles of banknotes fell outside the ATM booth when the assailants were fleeing. After they left, Vipin called the police control room and informed about the crime. A police team arrived and rushed Manoj to the hospital. The entire area was cordoned off and the crime investigation team collected important evidences from the spot.
“We are checking CCTV footages installed at the ATM booth and in the nearby areas. Prime facie, it appears that the robbers were following the vehicle for long,” the officer said.
The van had visited seven to eight ATM booths in north-west Delhi before reaching the one in Bhalswa Dairy. It was slated to visit a few more booths from there. Investigators are questioning the three van staff and other employees of the replenishment company for clues.