Jewellery shop burgled at gunpoint

A gang of five armed men raided a jewellery shop here on Sunday afternoon and decamped with gold ornaments and cash worth around Rs 2.7 crore.

By OUR CORRESPONDENT
  • Published 10.09.18
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A crowd that gathered outside the jewellery showroom after the robbery; (below) policemen inspect the shop. Pictures by Arup Sarkar

Durgapur: A gang of five armed men raided a jewellery shop here on Sunday afternoon and decamped with gold ornaments and cash worth around Rs 2.7 crore.

The robbers also took away the footage of the CCTV cameras.

Police sources said it was the biggest jewellery shop heist in Durgapur town in recent memory.

The robbers arrived at Guinea Gold Jewellers Pvt Ltd in Durgapur station bazaar in a white SUV around 2.20pm. Three of them entered the shop posing as customers while two others stood on guard beside the armed security personnel outside the showroom.

There were no other customers and only five employees were present at the shop.

"Posing as customers, robbers entered our shop and asked us to show gold earrings and necklaces. We did not notice anything wrong in their behaviour. All of them were in their mid-30s and were speaking in both Hindi and Bengali," said an employee of the shop.

Soon, the two who were standing outside entered the shop holding the security guard at gunpoint. The others also whipped out pistols and asked the staff to hand over all gold ornaments and not try to raise alarm.

The shop is located in a busy market close to Durgapur-Bankura Road but as it was Sunday afternoon, the area was deserted and most of the other shops were closed.

"We were scared and could not dare to raise alarm as the goons were holding their guns at us. We had to allow them to take away whatever we had and handed them the cash. They stuffed all the ornament and cash inside four bags. As per our primary estimate, altogether 9kg gold ornaments and Rs 4 lakh in cash were looted," said Kunal Sutradhar, the manager of the shop.

The dacoits escaped towards NH2 at Muchipara in the same SUV after finishing the operation in 15 minutes. As soon as the dacoits left, Sutradhar called the police.

A large team of police led by deputy commissioner of police (east) Abhishek Modi arrived and started an investigation. Later, the police seized a white Bolero found abandoned beside NH2 in Asansol. A pistol was also found inside the vehicle.

"We are probing whether the goons came in the same vehicle. We have also alerted all neighbouring police stations in Asansol and Durgapur as well as bordering Jharkhand. The dacoits have taken away the CCTV footage," said Modi.

Durgapur Bazaar Jewellery Shop Owners' Association secretary Bhabesh Das said he could not recall any heist in which such huge amount of gold jewellery was looted in recent times in Durgapur. "We are scared and have demanded that security be stepped up at the markets," said Das.