BHUBANESWAR: In a violent incident after the panchayat elections in Odisha, a 42-year-old woman and her family were attacked Sunday by a candidate who lost the polls in Haripur village under Nimapara block in Puri district of Odisha.
The incident occurred at Balia Sasan in Balanga village. A villager, Maheswar Khatoi, was beaten up by a losing candidate Bobby alias Pramod Kumar Barik and an associate on the way to his farm. Khatoi reported the matter to some of his village elders, but Barik returned a few hours later, armed with iron rods, and assaulting Khatoi’s wife, sister and mother. While two of them escaped with minor injuries, his mother Chanchala fell unconscious, he said. Chanchala was rushed to the Balanga Primary Health Centre and later to the Capital Hospital in Bhubaneswar. She has since been shifted to the SCB Medical College and Hospital in Cuttack, where she is still unconscious.
Maheswar Khatoi said Barik offered his family money to vote for him in the sarpanch election. But the family supported the BJD-backed candidate who won the election. Barik nursed a grudge and attacked Khatoi’s family. Maheshwar’s uncle Rama Chandra Khatoi has lodged a formal complaint at the Balanga police outpost. Police have started an investigation and launched a search for the accused persons, though a case is yet to be registered in this connection.