Vikash Sharma

Bhubaneswar: From Delhi to Chandigarh or Bangalore, the two criminals arrested for their alleged involvement in the loot of an ATM kiosk in Bhubaneswar hopped cities across the country to identify the targets, police said.

The duo, identified as Samarjyot Singh and Zafar Sadiq, from Punjab and Kerala, respectively, were part of an inter-State gang that was involved in committing loot at ATM kiosks in different parts of the country, Twin City Police Commissioner Sudhanshu Sarangi said on Friday.

A case under the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances (NDPS) Act had also been registered against them in Bangalore where they live and plan out their strategy to carry out loots across the country, he said.

The duo was arrested in connection with the Bhubaneswar ATM loot case by the Vizag police earlier on Friday and efforts are on to bring them to the city after obtaining their remand from a court in the southern city, Sarangi said.

The commissioner said that the duo would conduct detail recce of the targeted ATM to verify its’ security measures before striking at an opportune time.

The came to Bhubaneswar on October 5, lived in a hotel for the next four days before they struck at the ATM Kiosk in Infocity locality on October 10 night. They decamped with Rs 27 lakh stored in the cash dispensing machine.

Sarangi said that the criminals led a luxurious life and changed their location constantly in order to dodge surveillance of investigating agencies.

After looting cash from the ATM in Bhubaneswar, they went to Delhi, Chandigarh, Bangalore before getting holed up in Vizag. Their questioning has revealed that they had also looted around Rs 9 lakh from an ATM counter in Vizag during their stay.

The criminals had used a gas cutter to break into the ATM in Bhubaneswar and decamped with the loot on a hired motorcycle, Sarangi added.