Navi Mumbai heist: Serious lapses on part of Bank of Baroda, says DCP

Updated: Nov 18, 2018, 08:17 IST | Anamika Gharat

On November 17, 2017, burglars had dug tunnel into locker room of Bank of Baroda's Juinagar branch from a nearby shop and taken cash and jewellery from 30 lockers

Navi Mumbai heist: Serious lapses on part of Bank of Baroda, says DCP
The bank's locker room where the theft had taken place. File Pics

Investigation into the brazen robbery at the Bank of Baroda's (BoB) Juinagar branch a year ago has revealed several lapses on its part. In Nov 2017, burglars had dug a tunnel into the locker room of BOB's Juinagar branch through a nearby shop and taken cash and jewellery from 30 lockers.

Tushar Doshi, deputy commissioner of police, crime branch, said, "The theft could have been averted if a guard was present at the bank's ATM 24x7. Investigations have revealed that the bank did not follow several RBI guidelines. The wall of the room where the lockers were kept is not more than five inches thick. Due to lack of security, the thieves managed to reach the room easily, as the locker room is just behind the ATM.

The hole that was dug through the floor of the bank
The hole that was dug through the floor of the bank

If a security guard was present, he could have spotted the accused dumping the debris in the area every day during the process of digging the tunnel. We have mentioned these in the charge sheet." He added that they had sent the bank an advisory following the incident, but he is not sure whether the authorities were abiding by it or not.

Meanwhile, the victims of the robbery are still far from getting justice. The 30 victims, who lost valuables worth Rs 3.43 crore, said the cops have failed to take action against the bank authorities, even though the incident was the result of their negligence.

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Speaking to mid-day, the victims' lawyer, Swapnil Kadam, said, "The victims are running from pillar to post to get their money and valuables back. Forget about getting justice, they haven't yet got back their hard-earned money. Their life's savings vanished overnight and no one has been held responsible for it. If the police have evidence against the bank, then why can't they file a case against the authorities? Though the cops arrested the accused and recovered the gold, most of it was melted and converted into blocks by them. Now it's an uphill task for the court to distribute the valuables among 30 people."

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Here's how thieves dug a tunnel to rob a bank in Navi Mumbai!

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