The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Coconut vendor in thief chase

He is equally at ease while chopping a coconut or catching a criminal. Sambhu Sau, a green coconut-vendor outside Allahabad Bank’s Park Street branch, chased a 20-year-old youth for a few hundred yards and caught him on Saturday morning. The youth, who had walked into the bank and snatched Rs 30,000 from an account-holder, was later handed over to police.

The incident occurred around 11 am when Rampiyari Ram, a 60-year-old employee of a carpet company, was about to deposit the money in the bank. “He was in the queue in front of the cash counter and the money was kept in a leather bag,” said Kuldeep Singh, deputy commissioner of police (south).

“Before depositing the money, Ram started counting the bundle of 60 notes of Rs 500 denomination. Yasin Khan, the culprit, was standing at a corner of the room, pretending to be an account-holder. All of a sudden, he snatched the bundle and ran out of the room,” he added.

“A perplexed Ram raised an alarm. Two constables, P. Saha and S. Khan, guarding the main entrance started chasing Yasin, along with Ram,” said an officer of the Park Street police station. Noticing the commotion, Sambhu, who was busy selling green coconuts, joined the three men in chasing the youth along Park Street. “Sambhu was faster than our policemen. He pinned Yasin down at the Park Street-Russell Street crossing and retrieved the money,” the officer added.

Interrogation revealed that Yasin was a resident of Metiabruz. “No case has so far been registered against him,” the deputy commissioner added. “We are probing what circumstances led him to commit the crime. We are also verifying if he has links with any gang,” the officer added.

Swimmer injured

Swimmer Masudur Rahaman Baidya had a narrow escape when the boat he was riding collided with another boat during a race at Mathurapur, in South 24-Parganas, on Saturday.

The boat race was organised as part of the Banbibi festival on the Nimnia river in the Sunderbans. Masudur, one of the judges, was in a guide boat. Suddenly, a boat of the local ferry service entered the competition zone. In a bid to ward off the mishap, Masudur’s boat changed direction and collided with a competitor’s boat. Masudur fell off on the deck of the other boat and received injuries in the chest and arms.

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