SAMBALPUR: The Odisha Pradesh Congress Committee (OPCC) on Wednesday demanded registration of a murder case under Section 302 of the IPC against cops responsible for custodial death of tribal youth Abinash Munda at Ainthapali police station in Sambalpur.
A four-member Congress team comprising former OPCC president Jayadev Jena, chairman of ST cell of the party Pradeep Majhi, Koraput MLA Krishna Chandra Sagaria and Jharsuguda legislator Naba Kishore Das visited the house of Abinash at Bhalupali here on the day. Later, addressing the media, they demanded judicial probe into the incident by a sitting judge of the High Court and financial assistance of `30 lakh to the victim’s family.
Jena said the custodial death has sent shock waves across the State. He said Congress will fight to provide justice to the the family of Abinash.Terming the custodial death of Abinash as a cold blooded murder, Majhi said tribals and dalits residing in Odisha are in a state of fear and they have lost confidence in the Government. Atrocity on tribals and dalits is on the rise and the recent incidents at Kunduli and Ainthapali are burning examples, he said.
Majhi further informed that Congress will stage demonstration at Jantar Mantar in New Delhi after February 25 demanding safety and security for tribals and dalits. The party will also draw the attention of President Ram Nath Kovind to the issue, he added.
Nineteen-year-old Abinash had died at Ainthapali police station on February 8 night. Though police claimed that Abinash hung himself, residents of Bhalupali alleged that the youth was beaten to death by cops. Ainthapali police station had turned into a battlefield after news of Abinash’s death spread on February 9 morning. An enraged mob ransacked the police station before setting it on fire.