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Bravehearts fight goons

- Snatcher handed over to police

Bhubaneswar, July 26: Kartik Moharana changed what could have been another snatch-and-flee incident. The 32-year-old held on to a snatcher despite being shot at by his accomplice.

Around 11.30am today, 50-year-old Jhunu Patnaik was sweeping the front yard of her Nageswar Tangi home when a goon entered the premises and tried to snatch away her necklace.

But she grabbed him and hit him with her broom before he managed to free himself. Hearing Jhunu’s screams, her businessman husband, Rajendra, 55, came out and gave the goon a chase.

The snatcher’s accomplice, who was waiting on a motorcycle a few metres away, fished out a gun and fired in the air in an effort to scare him.

However, the gunshot attracted the attention of Jhunu’s neighbour, Kartik Moharana, who came rushing and grabbed the snatcher, who had already reached the motorcycle.

The other goon alighted from the vehicle and shot Kartik in the leg and also hit Rajendra on the head with the pistol butt. But when they refused to release their hold on his colleague and a crowd began to gather, he fled from the spot leaving the motorcycle behind.

Later, local residents handed over the captured snatcher to the police.

“I came out to see one of the goons lying on the ground and three others, including my son, trying to capture him. The other goon threatened us with a pistol and then ran away,” said Bhanu Maharana, Kartik’s mother.

Kartik, who had two bullet injuries in his right leg, was immediately rushed to Capital Hospital and later referred to SCB Medical College and Hospital in Cuttack. Doctors said one bullet had pierced his right thigh.

Police said the snatcher who was captured had been identified as Seikh Farid, a native of Nimapara in Puri district. Police has also seized the motorcycle and has begun a manhunt to arrest the other goon.

Three arrested

Police have arrested three persons, two of whom were involved in an exchange of fire with cops on the busy roads of Cuttack yesterday. A pistol, a country-made revolver, two empty magazines and six rounds of live ammunition were seized from them.

The incident took place when five goons were planning to rob a bank at Kalinga Nagar on the city outskirts.

“We raided the spot but they managed to flee in two motorcycles and we chased them. While one motorcycle with three criminals disappeared on the national highway, we chased two others on the national highway heading towards Cuttack,” said a police official.

During the chase from CDA to Khannagar on the busy ring road, the police shot five times at the criminals, who retaliated with four shots. After three hours, the cops managed to catch both the goons and later arrested one of the other three from Jagatpur. Police said that the men belonged to Bhadrak district and were involved in a number of crimes including murder.

“The trio were involved in the robbery of Rs 5.5 lakh from a businessman in Bhadrak last month. They have a number of highway robbery cases against them,” said deputy commissioner of police Nitinjeet Singh.