Two employees of CMS Cash Management Solutions company drove away with a van containing Rs 90 lakh cash meant to replenish ATMs on Monday evening in Jnanabharathi.
The suspects, driver Narayanaswamy (45) and his assistant Narasimharaju (28), abandoned the TATA Sumo vehicle in the Kittanahalli forest area in Madanayakanahalli of Ramangaram district.
The company has the contract to replenish cash into the ATM kiosks of HDFC, SBI and Karnataka Banks and employees were assigned with the job to collect the cash from various bank branches and to fill the kiosks with the cash.
Narasimharaju, a native of Hebbur village in Tumakuru district and Narayanaswamy, a resident of Uttarahalli, were with the company for the past three years.
Following directions from senior officials in the company, the two suspects along with gunman Nataraj (57) went to Rajarajeshwarinagar and collected Rs 2.15 crore from HDFC, SBI and Karnataka Banks.
They replenished Rs 1.25 crore at six kiosks. The remaining Rs 90 lakh was to be replenished into the ATM kiosk in Jnanabharathi Circle near Nagarbhavi.
A senior police officer said that around 4.30 pm and the trio came near the circle and Narasimharaju told his gunman to get him bananas from a nearby shop. When Nataraj got down from the vehicle, the duo fled with the vehicle.
Nataraj waited till 6 pm thinking that they may have gone to replenish the ATMs. When there was no sign of them returning, he reached the office in Rajajinagar and informed his manager Raghunath about the incident, the police said.
The Jnanabharathi police said that the manager lodged a complaint on Monday night and the information has been circulated to all the police stations.
The vehicle was found in Kittanahalli forest area on Tuesday morning. But there was no money in it, said the police.
The police are interrogating family members of the two suspects, their friends and relatives. Preliminary investigations revealed that Narayanaswamy had taken Rs 15 lakh hand loan and was he struggling to repay it.
The police suspect that he with his associate may have planned to clear his debts. Both the suspects have switched off their mobile phones. Special teams have been sent to various places such as Kolar and Tumakuru to search them, the police said.