BERHAMPUR: Phulbani Town police on Tuesday arrested former MLA Debendra Kanhar and India Reserve Battalion (IRB) constable Srinivas Kanhar on charges of dacoity and loot. Sub-divisional police officer (SDPO), Phulbani M N Murmu said the duo was arrested on basis of the complaint lodged by one Kamakhya Behera of Parjang in Dhenkanal district.
On February 9, Kamakhya along with his friends was enroute to Kasinipadar village in Kalahandi’s Phiringia block when they were allegedly detained by Debendra and his supporters on Katringia-Urmagada road.
Claiming themselves to be cops, Debendra and his group of supporters asked them to come to the local police station. Though Kamakhya and his friends presented their identity proof, the former MLA insisted on taking them to the police.
Subsequently, the complainant and his friends were forcibly taken to a house at Court Chowk in Phulbani town. In his complaint, Kamakhya alleged that they were beaten up by the former MLA and his aides. Besides, Debendra snatched Rs 10,000 cash from him. The accused also forced one of his friends Khalid to go to a nearby ATM and withdraw Rs 20,000 which was also pocketed by them.
Basing on Kamakhya’s complaint, Phulbani Town police registered a case and nabbed Debendra and Srinivas. The duo was produced in court. Other three accused are still absconding. Debendra was elected to Odisha Assembly from Phulbani in 2009 on a BJD ticket. However, the ruling party denied him the ticket in 2019 general elections. In 2018, Debendra was arrested on the charge of assaulting a woman.