January 14, 2015 | By Sikh Siyasat Bureau
Amritsar: The malfunctioning of CCTV (close-circuit television) cameras at Maharaja Ranjit Singh Panorama has become an impediment for the police in tracing robbers who decamped with arms belonging to the 18th century Sikh warriors.
Of the nine daggers kept in a glass enclosure on the first floor of the panorama, seven were found missing by guards on Sunday evening. The CCTV cameras installed in the building had been defunct for more than a year, said sources.
The Director of the Department of Cultural Affairs, Archaeology and Museums, who is the custodian of the artefacts, has written to the MC Commissioner and the Police Commissioner to upscale security arrangements at the panorama.
A police team led by Additional DCP City (II) Ketan Patil, on Jan. 13, questioned the staff at the panorama and Maharaja Ranjit Singh Museum that is housed in the same complex.
The police have reportedly taken five employees into custody for further questioning. The fingerprints of three security guards and a security inspector were obtained on Jan. 12. The report is awaited.
Patil said the involvement of insiders could not be ruled out as these relics were placed under lock and key in a separate room to which outsiders had little access. These insiders would have also known that the CCTV cameras were not functional. The robbers took their time in breaking open the chain lock and then removing the glass of the showcase.
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