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Robbery bid at Burrabazar

A robbery attempt at a moneylender’s office in a narrow and dingy Burrabazar lane was foiled on Monday morning when three men jumped out of a fourth-floor window with two bags of notes and were seriously injured.

One of the two employees who were present in the office at 16 Bornfield Road was found injured after the robbery attempt around 11.15am. The other employee is missing.

Apart from the two, the shop has another employee, who has been arrested for allegedly helping the robbers. A former employee who had quit recently is also missing.

Police said the three who had jumped were Srichand Behra, Gautam Dahiya and Asish Sankla, alias Sonu. The trio have been arrested.

“The moneylending business was illegal. One of the employees, Manoj Parekh, has been arrested. Another employee, Shiva Parekh, is injured. One of the three accused, Ashish Sankla, is critical. About Rs 1 crore has been seized from the bags the men were escaping with and a cupboard in the office,” said joint commissioner (crime) Pallab Kanti Ghosh.

Burrabazar police station came to know about the raid within minutes following an alert from Howrah traffic guard officer-in-charge Somnath Chatterjee, who had been tipped off by an acquaintance.

On rushing to the spot, Burrabazar cops found the trio — two of them bleeding profusely — lying between the building and its boundary wall at the back.

The trio had apparently broken the grille on a window in the fourth-floor office and jumped. “It appears that their fall had been broken by asbestos sunshades,” said an officer of Burrabazar police station.

The cops suspect Shiva’s injuries were self-inflicted with sharp weapons. He has been admitted to a local hospital. No one in the neighbourhood had touched the accused trio fearing police trouble, said sources.

“It appears someone in the office had raised the alarm about the robbery and people had started gathering outside. Finding the main door blocked, the men had tried to flee by jumping from the window,” Ghosh said.

Two knives have been seized from the bags of the accused trio but apparently none had been used during the robbery.

Investigators have found that the accused are originally from the same neighbourhood in Rajasthan’s Churu district as Manoj.

The owner of the moneylending business, G. Parekh, is based in Rajasthan.

“Of the four employees – Shiva Parekh, Manoj Parekh, Ramesh Parekh and Sarvar Parekh — Ramesh had left the job a few weeks ago. Shiva and Sarvar were present in the office this morning. But from the call details we have found that at least Manoj was in touch with the accused trio over the past four-five days,” said an officer of Burrabazar police station.

The accused trio had come to Calcutta last week and was lodged in a hotel in the New Market area, sources said.