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State On Action Mode

Bhubaneswar: After receiving strong criticism from opposition and supporters of deceased Health Minister Naba Das, the State Government on Tuesday came to action and transferred Jharsuguda SP and SDPO to headquarters.

According to official sources, Jharsuguda SP Rahul Jain and SDPO Brajraj Nagar, Gupteswar Bhoi have been attached to State Police Headquarters, Cuttack.

Shri Bhoi has been replaced by SDPO of Athamallik, Chintamani Pradhan. Bargarh SP Parmar Smit Parshottamdas has been posted as new SP of Jharsuguda.

The new posting of the Jharsuguda SP and SDPO is being treated as punishment, an official said.  

The State Government took this action after the Opposition BJP and Congress questioned the silence of Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik and DGP Sunil Bansal.  

Rejecting the Crime Branch probe ordered by the Chief Minister, BJP demanded CBI probe while Congress demanded SIT probe under the supervision of Orissa High Court.   

Speaking to media persons, BJP State President Samir Mohanty said, “Minister Das was not just a politician, he was an influential and powerful cabinet minister in the state. If such a personality will be killed in broad daylight, one can easily assume the condition of a common man in the state.”

Shri Mohanty said it is unfortunate that Naveen Babu, who has been in charge of the Home department for the last 23 years, has remained silent on the sensitive issue.

Though a cabinet minister was killed, DGP and Home Secretary neither visited the spot in Jharsuguda nor spoke a word on the heinous murder, the BJP president said.

“When a police official has killed the Minister, will the Odisha Police investigate it? People will not accept it,” he said.    

By ordering a Crime Branch investigation, the State Government has already decided what to do in this case. The Crime Branch has taken over a lot of cases in the past. But the findings are not encouraging, Shri Mohanty said.     

To ensure proper instigation of the murder case, the BJP leader demanded a CBI probe into the case.  

Leader of opposition in Odisha assembly Jayanarayan Mishra (BJP) said, “We are not going to accept the story of the Odisha government that the accused police ASI Gopal Das was mentally unsound. A plot was created to kill the minister.”   

Shri Mishra also questioned why the Police DG is silent on this case. “As per information available with us, the Minister died on the spot. What was the necessity to airlift him from Jharsuguda to Bhubaneswar. Whether the Jharsuguda hospital authority had certified that Das was fit to airlift for further treatment?,” he asked.    

Claiming that the Crime Branch probe cannot reveal the truth, he demanded a CBI investigation into the incident.

Alleging there is a deep rooted conspiracy behind the killing of Minister Das, Congress spokesperson Sudarshan Das demanded a probe by a Special Investigation Team (SIT) under the supervision of a sitting judge of Orissa high court.

Though 48 hours passed to the incident, no action has been taken against any official, who is responsible for it, Das said.

“There was a total failure of intelligence. But no action was taken till now. Why is the DGP and Home Minister (CM) not speaking up?” he questioned.

Alleging that a conspiracy is being made to suppress the truth behind the crime, the Congress leader said the Chief Minister should leave his home portfolio on moral ground.

Reacting to the allegations made by the Opposition, senior BJD Vice President and senior Lawmaker Debi Prasad Mishra said, “As questions will be raised if the police will investigate the case in which a cop is the accused, a crime branch probe was ordered. To ensure transparency, the government has requested the Orissa high court to monitor the investigation by a sitting/retired judge.”

On the demand for CBI and SIT probe, Shri Mishra said, “Let’s wait till the findings of the crime branch investigation has come up.”      

The Health Minister was killed by a bullet fired by dismissed ASI Gopal Krushna Das on January 29. The police ASI fired a single round of bullet from his service revolver at the chest of Das. The Ex Cop was arrested and sent to judicial custody. Crime Branch has sought a seven-day remand of the police official from the local court in Jharsuguda