Electoral officials in the India state of Tamil Nadu Saturday seized about Rs 5,700 million ($85 million) from three containers during checking in Tirupur district, which the occupants of the vehicles claimed was for inter-bank money transfer.
Officials said personnel accompanying the containers told them they were transferring Rs 5,700 million from State Bank of India in Coimbatore to Vishakhapatnam branches but they did not have all the necessary documents and efforts were on to ascertain the veracity of their claim.
The flying squad of the election department, along with paramilitary forces, seized the cash early Saturday during a routine vehicle check on Perumanallur-Kunnathur bypass, police said. The containers, escorted by three cars, did not halt but officials chased them and stopped them near Chengapalli.
A check revealed the amount, kept in many boxes, inside the containers, they said. The men in cars, who claimed to be policemen from Andhra Pradesh but were not in uniform, could not produce proper documents to prove their claims of inter-bank money transfer. The vehicles were taken to the District Collectorate in Tirupur.
Asked whey they had sped away without stopping, they told the police they feared it was a robbery attempt and that they were unaware that the officials were from the election department.
Bank officials from Coimbatore and Vishakhapatnam were informed, police said. Assembly elections election in Tamil Nadu will be held on May 16.