City’s first bank robbery of the year: Chilli powder helps youths get Rs 531,764 in 4 minutes
LAHORE: Three youngsters robbed a bank in Islampura on Friday morning and made off in four minutes with more than half a million rupees after throwing chilli powder in the eyes of the bank’s security guard and shooting at him.
According to the bank’s officials, the young men entered the bank at 9:05am and left with the money at 9:09am. Islampura Station House Officer (SHO) Munawar Doggar told Daily Times that students of a nearby college might be involved in the robbery. He said that the police had come by some clues that could lead to the culprits’ arrest. However, an investigation officer said that the bank’s security cameras were out of order and the police had nothing but the robbers’ sketches.
The bank officials told Daily Times that they were about to finish reciting the Quran when three armed youngsters in shalwar kamiz entered the bank and held them at gunpoint. They said that one of the robbers collected cash from the cashier’s counter and then all three walked towards the bank’s exit. They said that security guard Amin tried to stop them, but one of the robbers threw chilli powder in his eyes and another one shot him in the leg. Bank Manager Murtaza Zaidi informed Islampura Police and got a case registered against the robbers. According to the bank officials, the robbers had taken Rs 531,764.
A nearby shopkeeper said that people near the bank heard gunshots and saw three youngsters leaving the place on a motorcycle. He said that several security guards were present at a petrol pump situated in front of the bank, but none of them tried to stop the robbers.
College students: SHO Munawar Doggar said that the police had found some clues about the culprits, and would arrest them in two days. He said that the police believed that some students of a nearby college were involved in the incident. Asked about the footage of robbers in the closed-circuit cameras installed inside the bank, he said that any information in this regard could “help the criminals”.
Islampura Police Station Investigation Cell In-charge Sheikh Anwar told Daily Times that the bank’s official had told the police that no camera was installed outside the bank, while the cameras inside were out of order.
He said that the police had got the culprits’ sketches made with the help of witnesses, and had started collecting data of criminals involved in bank robberies in the past. “The police did not find any clue about the culprits. It was a pre-planned robbery as the robbers had complete information about the bank,” he said. He said that the police would also interrogate the bank’s staff.
The last armed bank robbery took place in the city on September 27, 2006, in the Defence Housing Authority (DHA). shahnawaz khan