BHUBANESWAR: The Crime Branch on Thursday recovered evidence related to cameraman Manas Swain’s murder. It, however, did not divulge any details about the memory chip for which he was allegedly beaten to death on February 7 by his employer Sarmistha Rout, editor of Bhubaneswar based web-channel ‘Sampurna’, and her associates.
Going by information provided by one of her associates Ranjan Nayak during interrogation, officers visited the spot on Daitari-Paradip highway, about 2 km from Chandikhol, where the accused admitted to having disposed of Manas’ belongings after killing him. T
hey recovered Manas’ earphones and slippers, the jute sack in which the accused had carried his body, a saree besides, the pick-ax and spade used to dig up the ground to bury him in Nayagarh. The investigators also took Ranjan to the spot.
Apart from Ranjan, Sarmistha and two others - retired Odisha Information Service (OIS) officer Niranjan Sethi, Jhuna Bhoi - are currently in police remand. During the investigation, Ranjan confessed that they had kidnapped Manas on February 7 from Palashpur village in Bhadrak district and brought him to Bhubaneswar in Sarmistha’s car.
He admitted that Manas was confined to Dayal Ashram, a shelter home for elderly people here run by Sarmistha. Ranjan also said that Manas succumbed after being brutally thrashed by them.
They disposed of his body in Nayagarh on February 8 and dumped his belongings near Chandikhol on the same day. Ranjan has also revealed that Niranjan had assaulted Manas in Dayal Ashram.