BENGALURU: Panic gripped the 42 passengers en route to Kannur from the city when the bus they were travelling in was waylaid by bike-borne men who trashed the driver and parked the bus in a godown. While the passengers initially believed that the men were policemen, suspicions were aroused when repeated questions from the passengers were ignored.
“We did not have water to drink and we were forced to sit inside the bus. Initially, they claimed that they belonged to the Central Crime Branch (CCB) and later they said they were from a private agency. We got so scared as we thought that we would be robbed. My co-passenger immediately dialled the police control room and informed them of the situation,” said Sandhya Arun, a passenger.
According to some others, the men repeatedly told the passengers that they would be harmed if they tried to get down from the bus. “We were all scared. Thankfully, there were no children,” said Nayaz Khan, another passenger.
Meanwhile, the godown owner Kishore B M on Saturday filed a case with R R Nagar police stating that the accused had not consulted him before barging into the premises. On Friday night, the bus was brought to the godown and the security men stopped the vehicle after noticing passengers. “According to the security staff, one Gowda, who brought the bus, threatened the security guard and drove inside by force. So, I have filed a case against Gowda to take necessary action against him.”
Firm not aware of incident
The staff of Fullerton India, the financing firm, said they were not aware of the incident. Shukur P, a supervisor with Lama Travels, said that Nizam H R was driving the bus when he was thrashed by the accused. “We have given all details to the police.” Prajeeth C, a partner of Lama Travels, told TNIE, “We don’t have any loans on buses and they falsely made this claim to seize the vehicle.”
- 10 pm - Bus leaves Kalasipalya after passengers board
- 10.20 pm - Bus moves on Mysore Road heading to Kannur
- 10.30 pm - Four men on two bikes waylay the bus while it was passing by private college; they drive the bus to Pattanagere in RR Nagar.
- 11 pm - The bus is parked inside a godown and passengers forced to sit inside
- 11.30 pm - A passenger calls police control room to alert them about the incident
- 12.30 am - Police reach the godown where the bus is locked and nab one of the accused
- 1.30 am - The owners of Lama Travels reach the spot and give statement to the police
- 3.30 am - Bus is taken to nearby police station and later proceeds towards Kannur