By Shelton Hettiarachchi
An organized gang including two Sri Lankans from Chilaw and an Indian couple were taken into custody during a raid conducted by the Crime Investigation Division of the Nuwara Eliya police for the robbery of cash and jewellery of devotees attending religious observances at Hindu temples in several areas of the country.
They were produced before the Nuwara Eliya Magistrate, Saman Sri Kariyawasam and remanded.
The suspects were arrested by the police when they were attempting to rob a woman from Udapussellawa of her jewellery.
When the woman who travelled from Udapussellawa to Hawa Eliya last Wednesday (27) got down from the bus, two other women had followed and snatched her gold chain.
However the residents of the area had given chase and caught the culprits. Police who initiated inquiries into the incident have arrested two other men involved in the racket and also seized the van used by them.
Police said the suspects had cuttings of advertisements regarding Hindu religious ceremonies which appeared in newspapers.
Inquiries revealed that the suspects were responsible for the recent robbery of jewellery belonging to several devotees at a religious ceremony in Kandapola Police area.
During the inquiries police had recovered more than Rs. 1 million worth of jewellery robbed by the suspects.
Police said the Indian couple was from Chennai. A police team under HQI Nuwara Eliya police Kamal Ranaweera and OIC Crime Investigation, K.G. Jayaweera were conducting further inquiries on the instructions of ASP C.W. Rajapakse and SSP Gamini Mathurata.