After fleeing the spot, 2 aides of the accused were found sleeping in their car as it had run out of fuel
While usually on Thursdays, bars and restaurants warm up for a heavy business weekend, a Kalyan bar found itself in a completely contrary situation.
A screen grab from the CCTV footage shows Sunil, the main accused, point a gun at the bar tender. (Inset) Bar owner Umesh Shetty
A man threatened staff members for three bottles of beer, worth Rs 390, from this bar at gunpoint and didn’t stop at that. He also took Rs 1,200 from the bar owner’s pocket before leaving. The main accused is still at large, while two of his associates have been arrested.
Three people arrived in a Qualis at Leela Family Restaurant and Bar, on Aadharwadi Road in Kalyan West, at 10.30 pm on Thursday. While two of them stayed in the car, one stepped inside the bar and asked the bartender for three beers to go.
The complainant and owner of the bar, Umesh Shetty (34), said, “Soon after the bartender packed the bottles, he asked the accused for payment. When the accused refused to pay, the bartender took the bottles off the counter and at that the accused took out his gun and threatened the bartender to hand over the bottles for free.”
A CCTV camera video clearly shows the main accused asking for beer at gunpoint.
The staff members panicked as soon as they saw a gun being pointed in their direction.
“As I was standing next to the bartender, I tried to reason with the accused. But he responded by loading the gun and pointing it at me. I got scared. While going out, though he didn’t take the beer, he took R1,200 kept in my shirt’s front pocket,” he added.
The main accused, identified as Sunil, then hopped into the car with his two other associates already in it waiting for him and fled.
But the CCTV camera footage, which showed the car’s licence plate, helped the police make two arrests the next morning. The arrested aides have been identified as Ashitosh Babade (23) and Santosh Bhandari (43).
But what shocked them more than the gun was that someone could go to such lengths to get alcohol worth Rs 390 and then not even take it.
“We were shocked to see that just to get just three bottles of beer someone can point a revolver at people. We suspect that he was drunk and if he would have fired a round, it could have killed someone,” said Shetty.
A case was registered by Bazarpeth police in Kalyan on Friday evening under Sections 506 (2) (criminal intimidation), 394 (voluntarily causing hurt in committing robbery) and 34 (acts done by several persons in furtherance of common intention) of the Indian Penal Code and different sections of the Arms Act.
Raju Narawade, assistant inspector, Bazarpeth police station, said, “The trio met on Thursday morning and drank alcohol the whole day while roaming around Kalyan. After creating ruckus at the bar, they again started roaming around Kalyan.
But after their car ran out of fuel, Sunil left the place, while the other two accused slept in the car. Since the bar owner had informed the cops about the incident soon after it happened, we were looking for the accused. The patrolling staff had the car’s number, which they spotted at Wali Peer Road on Friday morning and arrested the two of them.”