In a planned heist, a security guard accompanying a van supplying cash to an HDFC bank ATM in Vile Parle (East), along with a group of armed men, robbed R1.95 crore from the vehicle. The incident took place at around 7.30 pm yesterday, when the van was making rounds to refill cash in the bank’s machines.

The security guard, who was accompanied by another guard, a supervisor and the driver, had earlier asked the group to make a halt at Worli Naka, where he asked them to have some tea from a shop while he finished some personal work. According to the police, the tea was laced with sedatives.

By the time the van reached Vile Parle, the driver, guard, and supervisor had started to feel drowsy. As the van stopped near an ATM, a Maruti Omni intercepted the vehicle and around 5-6 men, armed with pistols, alighted. Threatening to shoot them dead, they took the cash from the van to their own car, and along with their accomplice from the bank, fled from the scene.

Milind Bharambe, additional commissioner of police (west region), said, “The Maruti Omni van had armed men who fled with R1.95 crore, with the help of the security guard of the van, who also ran away with them. The van had come to refill cash in the HDFC bank ATM. We are hunting for the vehicle and the accused.”