[Fwd: Terror at wedding receptions (summarised)]

*By Yogas Nair*

Indian women decked in their exquisite gold jewellery at weddings and
places of worship, have become the latest targets for armed robbers who
struck twice in the last week.

The first attack was at a wedding reception in a church in Newlands, on
Saturday, and the second at an ashram in Verulam where Divine Life
Society worshippers were held at gunpoint, on Monday night.

What was supposed to have been a dream wedding for Terance Naicker, 24,
a driver, and his bride Krystal, 22, a home executive, both of
Briardale, turned into an afternoon of terror when six armed robbers
stormed their reception at the Ebenezer Celebration Centre hall, in
Hillgrove Drive, Hillgrove, Newlands West, and demanded guests hand over
their valuables.

Church head, Pastor Tony Captain, said [...] the robbers, who were well
dressed and unmasked, ordered them to be silent before starting to
search the more than 100 guests. "They were meticulous and started from
the back of the hall moving from table to table, ordering the women to
remove their jewellery and the men to hand over cash and cellphones.
They were very specific and only wanted gold jewellery and not any
costume or imitation pieces."

He said the robbers stuffed the loot into their pockets and even
searched under the tables for handbags.

The seven-minute ordeal, which was recorded on closed circuit television
footage, ended when the robbers made their getaway in two vehicles, a
bakkie and taxi, after taking the keys from the owners.

"I never felt so helpless in my life. There were women and children
crying and we could do nothing to help or comfort them. These robbers
have no respect for places of worship and it is sad that we cannot
engage in prayer and other festive activities without looking over our

MEANWHILE, more than 35 Divine Life Society (DLS) devotees faced a
similar fate on Monday night during satsang at their Rosemary Drive,
Brindhaven, ashram.

According to DLS spokesman, Deo Singh, who was at the service, four
armed men entered the ashram at about 7:15pm and robbed devotees of
their valuables. He said they made their getaway in a Mercedes Benz and
Toyota Corolla which belonged to two devotees. The Mercedes was
recovered a few hours later in Ntuzuma, but there has been no trace, as
yet, of the Corolla.

* This article was originally published on page 1 of _The Post_
<http://www.thepost.co.za/index.php?fArticleId=5279619> on
December 09, 2009


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