BHUBANESWAR: Congress on Thursday demanded a Crime Branch (CB) probe into the murders of two party leaders, Bhagaban Swain and Aditya Kumar Ranasingh, near Banki in Cuttack district.
Ranasingh also worked as a part-time journalist who exposed wrongdoings of BJD leaders in the area.
A gang of miscreants had hacked Swain and Ranasingh to death near Jokalanji dam under Khajuripada gram panchayat on February 15.
“We strongly condemn the gruesome murder of the two persons and request Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik to order a Crime Branch probe into the incident,” OPCC president Niranjan Patnaik told media persons here.
Alleging that the local BJD bigwigs are reported to be involved in the case, Patnaik said about 18 to 20 people are suspected to be connected to the incident.
“While the Chief Minister is speaking about ‘Ahimsa’ (non-violence) and demanding it to be incorporated in the Constitution, there is attempts to cover up the misdeeds of the BJD leaders at the local level,” he said.
Patnaik led a team of senior leaders, including former minister Panchanan Kanungo, former MLAs Debasis Patnaik and Jagneswar Babu and secretary of AICC Rudra Raju to the place of incident and interacted with locals and party workers.
Patnaik also led a delegation, including Kanungo, party spokesperson Nishikanta Mishra and senior leader Ramchandra Hansdah, and met DGP Abhay over the demand.
A delegation led by former minister Bijaylaxmi Sahu met family members of the deceased.
Cuttack: Police on Thursday arrested four persons in connection with the case. The accused are Balabhadra Pradhan, Jitendra Swain of Khajuripada, Sushant Pradhan of Chakapada and Himanshu Bhusan Routray of Kuansh in Bhadrak district.
Speaking to media persons, Cuttack (Rural) SP Radha Binod Panigrahi said past rivalry over several issues was the cause behind the brutal murder.
“Since it is a sensational case, the investigation has been assigned to Banki SDPO PK Biswal and five teams constituted to apprehend the accused,” he said.