Karachi: Second bank heist in two weeks
KARACHI: Five armed robbers on Wednesday barged into a private bank branch on Rashid Minhas Road, relieved the lone security guard of his gun, took the staff and visitors hostage at gunpoint, collected Rs2.2 million and walked off with the booty, police said.
This was the second bank heist in the city this month as earlier the North Nazimabad branch of the same bank had been targeted by robbers on Oct 6.
Officials said in both heists, a hi-roof van was used. “It was around noon when the five armed men entered the Rashid Minhas Road branch of Habib Bank Limited,” said an official at the Sharea Faisal police station.
He said that they overpowered the security guard, Mohammad Nasir, posted there and snatched his gun before taking the bank staff and visitors hostage at gunpoint.
“They initially collected money from the cash counter and then emptied the strong room,” the official said.
Before rushing out, they also got hold of the Digital Video Recorder (DVR), which had been concealed at a place in the branch, the police said, explaining that they forced a banker at gunpoint to disclose the DVR location.
Speaking to Dawn, SSP East Javed Odho said he had doubts about the security guard being alert in his position and holding his weapon. “They are generally found doing other tasks at bank branches such as serving tea to staffers,” he said.
However, he added, the bank guard would definitely be grilled during the course of investigation. Special Investigation Unit SSP Raja Umar Khattab suspected that the robbery was committed by the same gang which had been involved in looting Rs4.5 million from the North Nazimabad branch earlier this month.
“The suspects` description and their modus operandi in both cases have great similarities,” the SSP SIU said. Till Wednesday night, an FIR of the robbery had not been lodged at the Sharea Faisal police station.
While the latest incident has brought the number of bank heists in the city this year to 11, police investigators claimed to have solved six cases.