Friday, May 23, 2008

Maoists loot Rs 5 crore from bank van in Ranchi

RANCHI: Suspected CPI (Maoist) activists looted more than Rs 5 crore of ICICI Bank on Tata-Ranchi NH-33 at Murup village under Tamar police station of the district on Wednesday. The money was on transit from Jamshedpur to Ranchi in an armoured van.

This is the biggest ever loot in Jharkhand. Before this, the largest bank loot in the state was of Rs 2 crore from Syndicate Bank at Ranchi in 2007. The Maoists captured the van along with driver, helper and four private security personnel and took it into the jungle.

According to police, the armoured vehicle collected about Rs 3.72 crore and Rs 1.35 crore respectively from the Bistupur and Sackhi branches of the ICICI Bank and left for the state capital at 10.45 am.

The van was also carrying about 1.3 kg of gold that was to be delivered at Ranchi. The vehicle was intercepted by Maoists at Murup.

"When the vehicle reached Murup village, it was intercepted by around 100 armed Maoists and after taking it over, they forced the driver to take the van to nearby jungle," said police adding "according to eyewitness, the Maoist even assaulted the two security guards who tried to prevent them from capturing the van."

Sources said that while retreating, Maoists fired more than 300 rounds at the police. One constable was injured.

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