Mumbai: A helper attached with the State Bank of India (SBI) was shot dead by two assailants who barged into an unguarded SBI branch in broad daylight at Dahisar on Wednesday. After killing Sandesh Gomane (25), the two assailants in masks threatened the cashier at gunpoint and fled with Rs 2.5 lakh in cash.
According to the police, the incident took place at 3.27pm, three minutes before the bank's closing time. At the time of the incident, there was no security personnel guarding the bank, while its shutter was also half closed and the employees were wrapping up the day's work. The two assailatns who came on foot pulled up the shutter and entered the bank. Since the bank was closed for public dealings, Gomane, a helper, approached them without suspecting their intentions. Before he could fathom what was unravelling, the one carrying a gun pulled the trigger; Gomane was hit in the chest at a close range and collapsed, according to the account pieced together by the police.
The two then went straight to the cashier who was counting the cash, threatened him at gunpoint and snatched his bag containing the day's pickings. The duo slipped out of the bank barefoot at 3.29 pm, two minutes after entering the bank. Since the two went straight the cashier and seemed to be familiar with the layout, the police suspect that they may have carried out a recce earlier.
The bank, located at Gurukul society at Dahisar West near railway station, is a small branch with only 8 to 10 employees. which include three women. The employees alerted the police control room after the incident. Gomane, who was employed with an agency which outsourced his services as a helper to SBI, was rushed to a nearby hospital, but was declared dead on arrival. A resident of Virar, he had been working at the bank for the last couple of months.
One of the accused who fired at Gomane was wearing a white shirt and dark jeans, while his head was covered with a red scarf. The other was wearing a dark blue shirt and jeans, and sporting a cap. Both had covered their faces with masks, the police said. The entire incident was captured in the bank's CCTV camera.
"The two accused decamped with around Rs 2.50 lakh in cash. We have formed eight teams to crack the case," said Pravin Padwal, Additional Commissioner of Police, North Region.
The MHB police have registered an offence of murder along with relevant sections of robbery and the Arms act. The crime branch has been entrusted with parallel investigation of the case.
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