BHUBANESWAR: The Crime Branch will send the computer of Sarmistha Rout, prime accused in cameraman Manas Swain’s murder, for forensic examination to recover a deleted file which was also in the possession of Manas. “We conducted searches at Manas’ house in Nayagarh district and at two other places in Bhubaneswar where he stayed but there has been no trace of the memory card so far,” said a senior CB officer.
Manas had reportedly demanded Rs 10,000 from his former employer Sarmistha - editor of Bhubaneswar based web-channel Sampurna - to return the memory chip having some ‘valuable content’ related to the accused. He had also demanded to return his camera which was snatched by Sarmistha and co-accused retired OIS officer Niranjan Sethi on January 30 this year.
The cameraman had been staying in Dayal ashram, a shelter home for elderly people run by Sarmistha since January 10. Sarmistha and Niranjan called Manas to her office on January 30 and asked him to return the memory chip. They thrashed him as he did not return it. Sarmistha and Niranjan then took Manas to Dayal ashram and forcibly took away his camera, said the Crime Branch officer.