A 33-year-old man named Wasim Hazaratsab Mullah in Karnataka’s Haveri district last week went on a rampage by setting a Canara bank branch on fire after his loan application was rejected. The police have arrested Wasim and registered a case under Section 435 (whoever commits mischief by fire or any explosive), 436 (mischief by fire or explosive substance with intent to destroy house), and 427 (mischief causing damage to the amount of fifty rupees) of Indian Penal Code and Section 3 (1) (Mischief causing damage to public property) of the Karnataka Prevention of Damage or Public Property, 1984.
The police remarked that Wasim had gobbled up the money collected from the women of his locality to buy weaving machines and thus was looking for the loan to settle the accounts. A police officer was quoted as saying by Indian Express:
“Wasim is a businessman who used to buy weaving machines from Gujarat and sell them here in the district. He had reportedly collected money from many women but before buying the machines, he allegedly spent the money.”
He further added, “As the women were demanding either their money or machines, Wasim approached the bank for a Rs 2 lakh loan. The bank manager, who has assumed charge recently, rejected his request as Wasim could not produce documents to prove a stable monthly income.”
Wasim turns up in an inebriated state for pre-meditated arson
Reportedly, after the accused’s application was rejected, he turned up in an inebriated state, riding on his motorcycle to the bank. To avoid getting caught, he removed the license plate, wore gloves and covered his face. Eventually, around 2 AM, Wasim broke open a window and poured petrol inside the bank’s office and torched the entire compound on fire.
The few passers-by raised the alarm seeing the building on fire and informed the police and the fire brigade. The locales found Wasim on the spot and thrashed him before handing him to the police.
A bank employee named M Hiraman M Yanenaik lodged the complaint and stated that the fire at the bank had caused damage worth Rs 16 lakh including computers, fans, lights, passbook printer, cash counting machine, documents, CCTVs, and cash counters, which were all destroyed in the blaze.
The police are investigating the case and prima facie it appears that Wasim maybe going behind the bars for a long, long time.