Ludhiana police step up vigil outside ATMs after Dec-14 robbery bid – cities

After the robbery bid at Punjab and Sind Bank ATM on Ferozepur Road opposite the Verka milk plant, Ludhiana police have increased vigil during night hours. Patrolling teams have been asked to check all ATMs repeatedly.

The teams have been also directed to look into the attendance of security guards deployed at the ATMs during patrolling.

Police commissioner Rakesh Agrawal has already ordered all banks to appoint at least one security guard who should be present at all ATMs located within the jurisdiction of Ludhiana police commissionerate from 8pm to 6am. Agrawal has made it clear that no ATM would be allowed to operate without a security guard.

The patrolling parties have been also asked to click pictures of the ATMs they visit and send it to their seniors.

Division Number 8 station house officer (SHO) Inspector Jarnail Singh said that all patrolling parties and PCR squads were asked to check every ATM and question people found roaming randomly on roads.

The Punjab and Sind Bank’s ATM, where few miscreants attempted a robbery in the wee hours of December 14, is closed for repairs.

A team of police personnel is keeping tight vigil in Feroze Gandhi market, where ATMs of six banks are installed. Due to the night curfew, movement of people is restricted.

The police teams, it has been learnt, are checking ATMs on highways every 20 to 30 minutes.

Satnam Singh, a security guard at Feroze Gandhi market, said that the movement of police has increased around the ATMs.

“Police personnel came to check if everything was fine. They enquire if the CCTVs are working or whether we have noticed some suspicious movements,” he added.

Bhupinder Singh, another guard, said the cops have asked them note down phone numbers of police officials and call on those numbers in case of any suspicious activity.

Police commissioner Rakesh Agrawal said that they have increased the vigil outside ATMs and other financial establishments.

“The banks have been already asked to depute security guards at the ATMs as we will not allow ATMs to function without guards at night,” he added.

He also said that the banks and financial establishments have been asked to take all security measures, including installation of alarm systems and night vision cameras.

The police chief also said that they have been identifying the ATMs without security guards. “The survey would be completed in next two to three days,” he added.

Previous attacks on ATMs

On December 2, three masked robbers took away ₹26.37 lakh after cutting open an HDFC Bank’s ATM in Lall Kalan village of Samrala. The ATM was unmanned as the bank had not deputed a security guard.

On April 5, a security guard managed to foil a robbery bid at the ATM of State Bank of India in Kesar Gunj

On January 4, unidentified men tried to break the locks of a Punjab and Sind Bank ATM kiosk in Chowkiman.

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