No response to victim’s Highway Helpline No. 1033 call
Car had broken down on way to Mysuru
Second major robbery in a month; gold, cash worth Rs. 2.58 lakh snatched
Mysore/Mysuru: In a second incident of major robbery reported on the recently inaugurated Mysuru-Bengaluru Expressway, four persons (two couples) from Mysuru city were robbed at knife-point between Devarahosahalli and Thittamaranahalli of Channapatna taluk, Ramanagara district.
Though the incident occurred on Monday (Mar. 13) night it has come to light now, causing widespread concern about the safety of the commuters moving on the Expressway, especially after dark. Gold and cash worth Rs. 2.58 lakh were robbed from the couples, who are residents of Mysuru.
It may be recalled here that on Feb. 6, a couple from Mysuru was robbed of their valuables and cash near Mallaiahana Doddi Bore in Mandya. N. Nagaraju, a resident of ‘E & F’ Block, Ramakrishnanagar and his wife L. Jayashree were robbed by a two-member armed gang in the wee hours of Monday (Feb.6). The total worth of valuables including cash is Rs. 3,81,060
In the latest case that occurred on Mar. 13, Lohit Rao, a medical practitioner and a resident of Vidyanagar in Mysuru city, his wife, his friend and his wife were robbed at knife-point around 1.50 am between Devarahosahalli and Thittamaranahalli.
Car had broken down
Their car had broken down in the middle of the night and they were awaiting help when the incident occurred. Unfortunately, though they reached out to the helpline number 1033 set up by the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) for the commuters on the Expressway, there was no response.
In his complaint to Channapatna Rural Police Station lodged at 4 am on Tuesday, Lohit Rao stated that he, his wife Kavya and friends Nitin, Naveen and Naveen’s wife Sowjanya had been to Nayandahalli near Bengaluru to drop off Nitin and were returning to Mysuru on the new Expressway late in the night. As they were travelling, the car developed a snag and came to a screeching halt at a particular point between Devarahosahalli and Thittamaranahalli.
Two accused approach their car
“As our car had broken down we reached out to National Highway Helpline 1033 and there was no response. It was 1 am and we then called for a towing vehicle and we were sitting inside the car waiting. Two persons approached our car at 1.50 am through the service road. They stopped next to our car and started knocking on the windshield. As one of them was wearing khaki-coloured pants, we mistook them for Policemen and stepped out of the car,” Lohit stated in his complaint.
“Both the accused suddenly flashed daggers and held the sharp objects onto the ladies inside the car, demanding them to surrender and hand over cash and valuables. We did not have any other option and had to hand over all our valuables. After robbing us, the duo casually walked alongside the main road and disappeared in the dark on a two-wheeler,” Lohit Rao added.
The complainant has stated that all of them lost gold including rings and chains and cash in the incident and the total value of the gold and cash is Rs. 2,58,000.
Dy.SP on the rounds
After the robbery, the victims called the Police Control Room to report the incident. Channapatna Rural Police told Star of Mysore this morning that on the night of Mar. 13, teams headed by Rural Dy.SP were on night rounds and the officer had spotted the car in the middle of the Expressway.
Seeing the car, the Police stopped to enquire and the occupants of the car told the Dy.SP that their vehicle had broken down and they had already contacted the NHAI Helpline. The Dy.SP advised them to leave the place soon after the repair works are done, a Policeman said. The victim Lohit Rao mentioned his interaction with the Police in his complaint.
After the victims called the Control Room, a Police team rushed to the spot and brought the victims to the Police Station and their statements were recorded. Investigating the case, the Police took three suspects into custody and they were produced before the victims, but the victims did not identify them indicating that it is a separate gang that is involved in the crime.
Police said that based on the statements given by the victims, the accused looked like professionals. A case of robbery under IPC Section 392 (highway robbery) has been registered.
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