Cart away Rs. 7.35 cr. after killing security agency employee

In a sensational crime that sent shock waves across Rajahmundry city in East Godavari district, robbers took away Rs. 7.35 crore cash belonging to the State Bank of India after murdering an employee of Scientific Security Management Services Limited (SSMSL), who was safeguarding the money.

The heist was pulled off from a private house in RV Nagar in the centre of the city and very close to Rajahmundry Central Jail where the cash had been kept. The security agency was tasked by SBI to load cash in all its 20 automatic teller machines (ATMS) in the City on a daily basis. SSMSL had taken has taken this work on lease from Tata Securities, Superintendent of Police, Rajahmundry Urban, T. Ravikumar Murthy, said The robbery came to light on Monday morning when a security guard -- Srimannarayana of SSMSL -- opened the office and found the body of Pouroju Srinivas (29), an employee, suspended from a ceiling fan, giving an impression that he had committed suicide. The lockers in the office were broken open. He immediately informed his office.

K. Anil Kumar, DSP, Crime along with Clues team and Dog Squad reached the spot around 12.30 p.m. and brought down the body of Srinivas. The police personnel found a serious injury on his neck, apparently caused by a sharp edged weapon.

The criminals took all the precautions to evade detection. They first covered all the surveillance cameras and then sprinkled chilli powder on the premises to make it difficult for sniffer dogs to trace their route. Police have launched a massive manhunt and sent the body Srinivas for post-mortem.

The SP said that it is sheer negligence on the part of the SSMSL that they kept the lockers containing crores of rupees in a private house without proper security and without prior information to the police. SBI Chief Manager. K. Chittibabu also described it as a grave lapse on the part of the security agency and added that the SBI had insured the cash.

According to initial information, police believe that it is an inside job and have begun interrogation of the staff of the security agency.