For the last over two months, theft of money using cloned ATM cards has become commonplace in Chandigarh and Panchkula, but the police are still clueless about the modus operandi being used by the miscreants.
In the latest incident, a resident of Sector 20, Panchkula, Chander Gera, found her account balance short of
Rs 20,400 when her husband went to a State Bank of India ATM to withdraw money on Sunday. The amount was withdrawn between November 13 and 14 from an ATM located in Manimajra.
Umpteen instances of ATM card cloning have been reported from Chandigarh and Panchkula in the last two months. Customers of State Bank of India and State Bank of Patiala are the worst affected, having lost lakhs of rupees. On Saturday, a customer found Rs 2.54 lakh illegally withdrawn.
S K Mehta, a senior retired official of the Punjab State Electricity Board, said he had been visiting his bank's ATM for the last three days but was unable to withdraw money as his card had developed a 'technical snag'. He was shocked to see his balance down by Rs 2.54 lakh on Saturday.
According to police records, nearly 15 people have lost more than Rs 8 lakh through fraudulent withdrawals from State Bank of Patiala and State Bank of India ATMs located in various towns of the region. DSP Crime Satbir Singh said, "We are working on all possible theories to find out their modus operandi and will soon nab them."