JEYPORE: In a high voltage drama, a lady block development officer (BDO) got into a spat with Jeypore MLA Tara Prasad Bahinipati after he sought an explanation for her alleged corrupt activities during a Congress strike in Papadahandi block of Nabarangpur district on Thursday. While both parties accused each other of unruly behavior, the BDO said she took offence after the MLA made casteist remarks at her.
Sources said, there were continuous allegations of irregularities in government works at Papadahandi block office and the highhandedness of BDO Ranjita Mallick for the last year. As the complaints were gathering momentum, the Papadahandi unit of Congress led by zilla parishad (ZP) member Lipika Majhi launched an indefinite strike in front of the block office on Wednesday, demanding the ouster of Mallick. Things took an ugly turn when MLA Bahinipati turned up to lend support to the strike on Thursday.
When BDO Mallick came to the block office, she tried to steer clear of the protest and return home without encountering the agitators but was confronted by the MLA. A heated argument between the duo followed when Bahinipati sought a public explanation over her alleged corrupt practices and Mallick retaliated.
“The MLA does not know how to behave with a lady officer. He charged me as Dalit which was offensive,” the BDO said. As the news spread, Nabarangpur ADM Bhaskar Raito reached the spot, held talks with the BDO and convinced her to tender an apology to the MLA. “The matter subsided after the BDO offered an apology to the MLA. Other demands of the Congress will be taken up for consideration shortly,” the ADM said.