NAYAGARH:Tension ran high at Godipada area here after irate locals on Saturday damaged a police van and hurled stones at Godipada police outpost demanding arrest of a murder accused.
Hundreds of villagers, who were staging an agitation in front of Godipada police outpost under Odagaon block, turned violent and damaged the police van defying Section 144 imposed in the area. They also hurled bombs at the police. At least five policemen, including Additional SP and Sarankul SDPO, were injured in the mob attack. Five locals were also injured in the incident.
In an effort to contain the agitators, police fired rubber bullets, lobbed tear gas and resorted to mild lathi charge.
Saranakul SDPO T Jagarao Reddy was beaten up by the villagers. Additional SP and a home guard Sailabala Mahapatra were injured as the mob pelted stones at them.
According to reports, the body of one Ranka Nidhi was found under a bridge on February 16 and his wife had alleged that a relative, Akhil Mahapatra, had killed him over property dispute. Police registered a case and detained Akhil.
Akhil was, however, released on Friday. This sparked off protests. The angry villagers gheraoed the outpost, demanding arrest of the accused.
Police refuted the allegation. “We have detained Akhil at Saranakul police station and his interrogation is on. The truth will come out once the investigation is over. The allegations made by the locals are baseless,” a police official said.
As police and Odagaon Tehsildar Jayashree Senapati were holding discussions over the issue, a mob attacked the policemen. Five persons have been arrested and the situation is under control, SP Manoranjan Mohanty said. District Collector HK Padhi rushed to the spot.