Burglars conduct ‘puja’ in Kerala finance firm before looting gold, cash

A tiny spear with a lime impaled on it, a bottle of liquor, betel leaves, and a framed photograph of a Tamil deity, which were used by the burglars to conduct the 'puja' at the finance firm. PHOTO: Manorama

Pathanapuram: A strange burglary has been reported from a finance firm here in Kerala's Kollam district. Burglars conducted a ‘puja’ (prayers) with liquor and betel leaves before carrying away gold worth Rs 30 lakh and cash amounting to Rs 4 lakh.

The break-in happened at ‘Pathanapuram Bankers’, a private financial institution located at Janata Junction in Pathanapuram town. Owner Ramachandran Nair claimed in his police complaint that 100 sovereigns of gold and the cash that were kept in two lockers were lost.

On inspecting the crime spot, police found that some ritual was conducted there. An image of a deity worshipped by Tamils was placed on three leaves. Items such as a tiny spear with a lime impaled on it and tied with yellow thread, a bottle of liquor and betel leaves were found nearby.

“Moreover, human hair was strewn all around the room, with the intention of misleading the police dog,” said the officer.

Yet another mysterious aspect of the crime was a poster pasted on the wall which said in English: “I am dangerous; don’t follow me.”

Though the message was targeted at the police, the officers chose to ignore it.

The locker of the finance firm found broke open. Human hair can also be seen strewn around. PHOTO: Manorama

“The bank functioned till Saturday afternoon and remained closed on Sunday. The robbery came to light when the owner and staff opened the bank around 9 am on Monday,” said a police officer.

“Apparently, the robbers reached the first floor of the three-storey building through the roof. After breaking the iron grills at the main entrance, they forced open the door,” he added.

“On entering the bank, the robbers sliced through the lockers with a cutter and emptied all the contents,” the officer explained.

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