‘Chennai cop killed in Rajasthan was confident of nabbing thieves behind gold heist’

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By Archana Sharma 

Jaipur, Dec 15 : The visit of Tamil Nadu Police Inspector S. Periyapandian to Rajasthan on the trail of robbers who stole 3.5 kg gold, which claimed his life, wasn’t his first visit to the state to nab those involved in the loot.

According to senior police from Chennai, Periyapandian, 48, had visited Rajasthan earlier too. He had strong clues to the whereabouts of the robbers and hence he, along with his team, was in Rajasthan earlier this week, and was quite confident of nabbing them.

The Police Inspector from Chennai was shot dead on Wednesday in Pali district of Rajasthan in the early morning hours with his own service revolver when he was on a special operation to catch the mastermind of an audacious heist. The criminals had escaped with 3.5 kg of gold after drilling a hole in a jewellery shop’s ceiling in Kolathur area of Chennai last month.

Chennai police officials confirmed that this was his second visit to Rajasthan and this time he was quite sure of the whereabouts of the robbers.

During his first visit to the state, the Chennai Police coordinated well with the Rajasthan Police. The two teams planned their strategies to catch the robbers together. They were successful in nabbing four suspects involved in the loot.

The Rajasthan Police was quite cooperative and helpful during our first operation which was initiated to search the robbers, Chennai police sources told IANS.

Then what went wrong in the second attempt? 

Answering the question, one of the top Chennai police officials said the “eagerness to crack the case” forced them to take the initiative on their own. Their investigation was very clear and they were confident of catching the robbers from a village in Pali district. And hence, they planned a late night operation, he told IANS, declining to be named.

A day before the operation, he met the Pali police too. 

Pali District Superintendent Deepak Bhargav confirmed the meeting to IANS. “The police team met us and informed us about their visit to nab key persons behind the burglary. However, they didn’t seek our help. Despite the fact that we helped them to nab four other suspects involved in the November 30 burglary, they preferred to go alone,” he added.

A team of seven police personnel had gone to Jaitaran village and caught one of the robbers, Nathuram, early on Wednesday. As he was being led away, Nathuram snatched Periyapandian’s revolver and opened fire, killing the Inspector instantly. Nathuram escaped before the others could even react. Some other policemen who were injured in the firing were rushed to a hospital. 

Meanwhile, an autopsy has confirmed that a single bullet hit Periyapandian in the armpit, which killed him instantly as his left lung was punctured.

The Rajasthan government has declared a compensation of Rs 1 crore for the Inspector family.