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Police scan profiles of former students

S. Vijay Kumar
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The students from north remained in Chennai for years

SCENE OF CRIME: Police are probing various angles in the bank robbery case.— Photo: M. Karunakaran
SCENE OF CRIME: Police are probing various angles in the bank robbery case.— Photo: M. Karunakaran

Police investigating the daring robbery at the Bank of Baroda branch in Perungudi here on Monday are studying the profiles of some former engineering students hailing from north India, who remained in Chennai for years without completing their degree, police sources said on Thursday.

Special teams formed to investigate the robbery visited at least three engineering colleges in the city and collected details of some former students who continued to live in Chennai even after the completion of their course.

“These students did not clear the examinations and remained in the city in an attempt to complete the course. A few of them came to the adverse notice of the police by indulging in violence…there was even a murder of an engineering student on July 6, 2010,” a top police official said.

Two or more groups of former students reportedly arranged admissions to private engineering colleges in the city by canvassing in their respective States. Since they made a commission out of each admission, there used to be misunderstandings between them. In another case, the official said, the Chennai Police and Intelligence Bureau arrested a suspected Indian Mujahideen (IM) operative who was staying along with his associate Asif (who escaped before their hideout was stormed) with some engineering students of Bihar in Selaiyur on the city suburbs.

“Going by the description of the accused persons who indulged in the bank robbery, it appears that all of them were aged below 25 years. Scrutiny of mobile phone communications recorded in the tower of various telecom service providers in the area did not lead to any suspicion so far,” he said.

Investigators are perusing the footage of Closed Circuit Television (CCTV) in the airport, railway station, Koyambedu bus terminus and the Toll Plaza on East Coast Road and Rajiv Gandhi Salai in a bid to see if the suspects escaped on the day of the robbery.

Surveillance has been stepped up in malls, multiplex and night clubs to check the movement of suspicious persons, police sources added.

Meanwhile, sources in the State intelligence said investigation by the ‘Q' and Special Branch CID had not pointed to the involvement of any extremist organisation in the bank robbery.

Investigation has not pointed to the involvement of any extremist organisation

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