BJD Member of Parliament from Mayurbhanj Laxman Tudu skipped the party's Jana Sampark Padayatra in Kuliana and Sarasakana blocks following a series of threat calls allegedly from suspected left wing extremists.
While Tudu, who is also the ruling party’s district president, has sought police protection, the calls have left the police administration in a tizzy as Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik is also scheduled to visit the district on October 15.
According to the complaint lodged with the Chandua police station on Wednesday, Tudu first received a threat call on his Odisha cell number on October 4 and the caller demanded Rs 10 lakh from him. He was also threatened with dire consequences if he did not pay the amount by October 7.
Quoting the FIR, officer-in-charge of Chandua police station Jayanarayan Khandei said Tudu got another call from the same number next day when the caller who identified himself as a Maoist asked to pay the amount at Kalabadi village, a place along NH-5 under Kuliana police limits in the district.
“The caller again called the MP on October 7 and when Tudu did not respond, he sent a SMS threatening him with dire consequences for not paying the money. Following the FIR, we have registered a case under section 506 and 384 of IPC and are tracking the cell number from which the calls were made,” he informed.
Police said they have tightened security of Tudu at his Chandua residence. Though sources said in the wake of the threat calls the MP left his residence for one of his relatives’ house at Baripada, he denied it saying he had been residing in his own home.
Tudu however admitted that he had skipped a couple of meetings following suggestions from the Superintendent of Police for security reasons. “Initially I thought someone might be joking with me. But when I received second call followed by the SMS I decided to lodge a complaint with the police to find out the people behind it. Everybody knows, I am a peace loving man and live a simple life. I too have no enmity with anyone, so why would anyone threaten me?” he surprised.
Meanwhile, police have taken the matter seriously as former JMM MP Sudam Marandi was attacked by a group of left wing extremists in Chandua area in 2009 during a football tournament when three persons along with his two PSOs and one assistant sub-inspector of police were killed.
Police said elaborate security arrangements have been made for the CM’s scheduled visit. Naveen is slated to tour Bangriposhi, Jamda, Bijatala and Baripada and attend a series of programmes on Monday.