FIVE DAYS after two unidentified men had allegedly snatched a cash bag containing Rs 19 lakh from an employee of a cash management company on Sector 10-11 dividing road, the Panchkula police on Friday arrested the employee for allegedly planning the crime himself and executing it with the help of a Chandigarh-based homeopathic doctor.
The employee, identified as Samuel Singh, a native of Saharanpur, lived as a tenant at Dhakoli with his family. He had been working with Radiant Cash Management Services Private Limited for over seven years, and used to daily collect cash from various outlets in Panchkula and Zirakpur, and deposit it in designated banks.
The incident had occurred in broad daylight on December 27, when Samuel was on his way to deposit the cash in the SBI branch in Sector 11. Around 11.30 am when he had stopped his bike to receive a phone call, two unidentified men on a bike hit him with an iron rod, sprayed chilly powder into his eyes and snatched the cash bag and fled. A case under sections 379-D (snatching) of the Indian Penal Code was registered at Sector 5 Police Station on December 27.
In his statement to the police, Samuel had alleged that the two accused who had their faces covered with black helmets had snatched the cash bag and his cell phone, and fled. It was the International Mobile Station Equipment Identity (IMEI) of that cell phone that led the police to nab the accused.
‘Snatched’ cell phone key to investigation
“Samuel had told the police that the accused had snatched his cell phone too. So, when we checked the IMEI of the cell phone, it was found that a new SIM was used in the cell phone on December 29, two days after the incident. During investigation, the SIM was found to be registered in the name of Samuel’s father Rati Ram, which raised suspicion,” said Deputy Commissioner of Police Anil Dhawan.
On checking the call record details of the newly inserted SIM, the suspicion pointed to the alleged involvement of Samuel, who was then interrogated by CIA-1 and Crime Branch, and the case was cracked. During interrogation, Samuel told the police that he had allegedly planned the incident with two accomplices — Ravinder, a resident of Sector 25, Chandigarh, who is a homeopathic doctor, and Devinder, a resident of Saharanpur, Uttar Pradesh.
However, the police have ruled out any alleged involvement of Samuel’s father.
Conflicting statements regarding amount
Samuel had given conflicting statements regarding the total amount of cash in the bag, which was snatched. In his initial statement, he told the police that the amount was Rs 18 lakh, which he later changed to Rs 26 lakh.
“Out of the total Rs 26 lakh which he was supposed to deposit in the bank, he had hidden Rs 7 lakh with him, and took Rs 19 lakh in the cash bag to deposit in the bank,” said the police.
As per the plan, around 11.30 am, when he came out of the Yes Bank in Sector 11 and stopped on the Sector-10-11 dividing road to receive a call, the two accomplices attacked him with an iron rod in his stomach, and threw chilly powder into his eyes, and fled with the cash bag.
Two arrested, one absconding
The police have arrested Samuel and one of his accomplices, Ravinder, and recovered Rs 21.99 lakh from them. While Rs 7.94 lakh was recovered from Samuel, an amount of Rs 14.05 lakh was recovered from Ravinder.
“The third accused, Devinder, is absconding. We will soon arrest him and will make the recovery of the rest of the amount. The two accused will be produced in a local court on Saturday,” said Dhawan.