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Delhi: He should have been in the Air Force, says son of deceased cashier

Aryan, son of cashier who was shot on duty, says the bank job did to his father what 21 yrs at IAF did not

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Relatives gather at deceased cashier, Santosh Kumar’s house to mourn his death, on Saturday; (Right) (Left to Right) Akhilesh Kumar, Dev Narayan and a sanitation worker were on duty in the bank when the incident took place on Friday
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A day on duty at the Corporation Bank did to Santosh what 21 years of service in the Indian Air Force did not; it took away his life. On Friday afternoon, Santosh Kumar, cashier at the Corporation Bank in Chhawla area, was shot dead by a group of masked robbers.

His 16-year-old son, Aryan, said, "My father served the Air Force for 21 years but nothing happened to him then, and now while on duty at the bank he was shot dead." "He should have been in the forces," he said.
Lost in grief, Aryan said, as he roamed directionless, barefoot in the house, that the thought had taken over his mind ever since he came to terms with his father's death. Santosh Kumar is survived by his wife, Sunaina Sharma, 11-year-old daughter, Aashi and Aryan.

Kumar had served in the Air Force as a Junior Warrant Officer (JWO) for 21 years before taking the voluntary retirement. He wanted to join the Income-Tax department but could not make it following which he opted for the job at the bank. The family had celebrated his birthday on October 8, which also happens to be Air Force Day.

"My mother called me and asked me to come to the hospital. When I reached, my father's colleagues from the bank told me he was injured but fine. Later, the police told me that he had sustained a bullet wound. We were taken to the reception of the hospital so that we could not see what was going on. My mother and I sat there and the police officers called me and informed me that he had passed away," said Aryan.

Aryan, who was in a state of shock, did not tell break this to his mother or relatives. It was only when his mother panicked that he informed her.

"We went to the mortuary and I saw my father on the stretcher. He had a big bandage on his right shoulder and the bullet could not be removed from his body. He was lying there, motionless," said Aryan, as he wiped his tears off his face.

Aryan last saw his father when he dropped them to school. "We had to go and buy a new laptop today from Nehru place. He had asked me to decide what parts I needed," he said.

The family did not break the news of the father's death to his daughter, Aashi. She was sheltered at their neighbour's house. Kumar's body has been taken to his native in Gaya, Bihar for the cremation.

Kumar's family emphasised on how security arrangements at banks should be beefed up. "There should be a mechanism wherein one can alert the police or a panic button which can inform the authorities. More guards with improvised weapons should also be deployed," said relatives of the deceased.

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