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Karnataka businessman sets bank branch on fire after being denied loan, arrested

Around 2 am, he broke open a glass window and poured petrol inside the bank and set it on fire. The police said he had his face covered and was wearing gloves.

By: Express News Service | Bengaluru |
January 12, 2022 12:29:52 pm
The police said Wasim started a fire inside a Canara Bank branch located at Heddigonda village. (File Photo)

A 33-year-old businessman was arrested Saturday in Karnataka’s Haveri district for allegedly setting a bank branch on fire after being denied a loan.

The accused, identified as Wasim Hazaratsab Mulla, is a resident of Rattihalli town. The police said Wasim started a fire inside a Canara Bank branch located at Heddigonda village.

A police officer said, “Wasim is a businessman who used to buy weaving machines from Gujarat and sell them here in the district. He had reportedly collected money from many women but before buying the machines, he allegedly spent the money.”

He added, “As the women were demanding either their money or machines, Wasim approached the bank for a Rs 2 lakh loan. The bank manager, who has assumed charge recently, rejected his request as Wasim could not produce documents to prove a stable monthly income.”

Later, on Saturday night, under the influence of alcohol, Wasim reached the branch on his bike after removing the registration plates from the vehicle. Around 2 am, he broke open a glass window and poured petrol inside the bank and set it on fire. The police said he had his face covered and was wearing gloves.

M Hiraman M Yanenaik, a bank employee who has filed a complaint, said equipment including the CCTV system, the cash counter, cash counting machine, gold weighing machine and other materials worth Rs 16 lakh were damaged in the fire.

Soon after the incident, locals rushed to the spot and assaulted Wasim before handing him over to the police.

The Kaginele police said a case has been filed under Section 435 (whoever commits mischief by fire or any explosive), 436 (mischief by fire or explosive substance with intent to destroy house) and 427 (mischief causing damage to the amount of fifty rupees) of the Indian Penal Code and Section 3 (1) (Mischief causing damage to public property) of the Karnataka Prevention of Damage or Public Property, 1984.

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