Jamshedpur, Jan. 29: In a daring daylight strike, two criminals looted Rs 5 lakh cash from the employees of a private transport company in Contractors Area under the Bistupur police station this afternoon.
Deputy superintendent of police (DSP) Sangeeta Kumari said two employees of Frontline Associates, after having collected the amount from the Bistupur branch of Bank of India, were about to enter their office when the criminals struck.
The incident took place around 12.50 pm.
'As soon as P.. Patel and Arvind Kumar got down from the company Sumo in front of their office in Contractors Area, two motorcycle-borne criminals accosted them. They snatched the bag at gunpoint and fled away,' she said.
Interestingly, this is the second time money has been looted from the same employee duo of the company. In 2001, Rs 5.85 lakh was looted from them in a similar way.
On that occasion too, the duo was carrying money from the bank to the office.
The two employees said one of the criminals who pointed a pistol at them was wearing a helmet while the other, who was driving the motorcycle, had his face covered with a muffler.
'Just as we alighted from the Sumo outside our office, the two stopped beside us. The person wearing the helmet pointed a pistol at us and asked for the bag containing the money,' they said.
'We raised an alarm when they went some distance away and some people also tried to chase them. But, the criminals managed to escape with the money,' said Arvind Kumar.
The appearance of the person wearing the helmet resembled the man who had looted money from them in 2001.
'This man was also tall, had moustache and was in his 30s,' said Patel. The deputy superintendent of police said all the city police stations have been alerted.
'We will surely arrest the culprits within a short span,' she said.
Police officials said a section of the city businessmen was not cooperating with the police to prevent such cases. 'We have asked every businessman who withdraws cash over Rs 1 lakh from banks to seek police protection from the local police station,' claimed the DSP.
'If the businessmen follow our suggestion and act accordingly, it will be impossible for the criminals to strike,' she added.
This incident comes at a juncture when the city police is still groping in the dark about a similar case in which criminals looted Rs 25 lakh from an operator of Bharat Petroleum Corporation Limited on December 20, last year.
The business community in the city has been protesting against the law and order situation and the latest strike has only made matters worse for the police.