Train robbers cut open rail coach, loot RBI’s soiled note trunks


CHENNAI: A part of cash being sent to RBI here from Salem in Tamil Nadu in a train is suspected to have been stolen on the way after some of the currency boxes were found tampered with, police said today to PTI .

The incident came to light after the express train from Salem arrived here this morning and some of the more than 200 boxes carrying the cash and transported through three cargo coaches of the train were found tampered with.

Police officials were tightlipped on the quantum of money that was transported from Salem as well as the cash suspected to have gone missing.

A police official told PTI that an air-vent in one of the coaches was found broken, prompting doubts that someone could have entered from its roof.

Police suspect that culprits could have entered the coach on the Salem-Vriddhachalam section where trains don’t run on electricity but on diesel locomotives, making it easy for the robbers to make their way from the top.

Police said they were probing many angles including how the theft could have happened despite police protection provided to the cash which had both currency notes printed prior to 2005 as well as soiled notes.

Currency notes printed prior to 2005 had been ordered to be exchanged by Reserve Bank of India with June 30 last as the deadline.

IANS adds: Robbers cut through the roof a train coach in Tamil Nadu and escaped with cash chests belonging to the Reserve Bank of India (RBI), police said.

The audacious robbery came to light when the Salem Express reached Chennai from Salem in the state.

According to officials, the RBI booked a coach in the train.

The bank had reportedly loaded 228 trunks with currency, estimated at around Rs 340 crore. But some officials said they were all soiled notes.

The robbers seem to have entered the coach after cutting through the roof sometime during Monday night or early on Tuesday when the train reached Virudhachalam.