Police rescue and arrest a thief locked down in an ATM


Early on Wednesday morning, police received a call to rescue a thief who had been locked inside an ATM for the last two hours. The man was rescued and has been arrested for trying to break open the machine. The machine carried cash worth about Rs 5 lakh The incident took place at an ICICI Bank ATM in Mehrauli market area of south Delhi around 2:30 am.

"The accused has been identified as Zakhir, a 26-year-old carpenter. He entered the ATM when the guard was not there and tried to break open the machine using his carpentry tools. Failing in opening the machine he entered a small room built inside ATM to which the machine is attached, and tried to open the cash box of the machine from there," police said.

The intrusion detection system installed inside the automated teller machine got triggered by his efforts and the small cabin got jammed. The doors got locked and the lights went off. Zakhir got trapped inside the cabin, and an automatic message was generated by the system to its head office in Mumbai. The branch then informed its Delhi office which contacted the guard to locate his position," said a senior police officer.

Meanwhile, the accused was also trying to call police and seek a rescue but couldn't make the connection. "The guard was called up by the company. It was found he had been roaming nearby. He returned to the ATM and called up police. We got a call around 3:30-4 am. We then reached the spot around 4:45 am and the man was rescued," the officer said.

The carpenter, who hails from Bijnour, lives with his family nearby. He told police that he was drunk and, seeing an ATM machine, wanted to break in for theft. Police have also obtained CCTV footage of the incident.

(Originally published in The Times of India)

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