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Featured Image: Representational photo of an UNI ATM counter. 

BY A Newsman

Siliguri, 11 September: MISCREANTS decamped with an entire automated teller machine (ATM) with a little over four lakh rupees in it from Haidarpara in Siliguri in the wee hours on Friday.

A police patrol team that got a whiff of the heist chased the miscreants but only to get hold of an Innova car having Assam registration, on which the gang was travelling. The miscreants gave the police a miss by abandoning the car on Siliguri’s Eastern Bypass.

This is the second such heist in north Bengal within a span of seven days. On 5 September, miscreants had decamped with an entire ATM of Bank of India in Cooch Behar town.

Friday’s heist at Iskon Mandir Road at Haidarpara in Siliguri took place in an ATM counter of the United Bank of India. A gang of around 4 to 5 miscreants took away the ATM around 2 am as there was no security guard posted at the counter. The ATM had a little over four lakh rupees at the time of the heist, police said.

After this, the gang raided another ATM counter belonging to Indicash of the Tatas at Jaleswar More in the town. But while they were tampering the ATM there, a police team on patrol got a whiff of this and challenged the miscreants.

The gang soon swung into the grey colour Innova which they had parked in front of the ATM counter and tried to sped away. Police gave them a chase but after speeding for a few kilometres, the gang stopped the car on Eastern Bypass, which runs from Siliguri’s Sevoke Road to New Jalpaiguri railway station, and all the miscreants escaped in the darkness by abandoning the car.

The cops later found the empty vault of the UBI’s ATM from the car which has the registration plate numbered AS-01/ AU-1880. The number suggests that it is a car registered in Assam but the police are probing its authenticity.

“We have got some important clue and the case is being investigated by a group of special officers,” said Siliguri Police commissioner Manoj Verma, who visited the affected ATM counter later on Friday.