BJP on Sunday took out silent protest march across Odisha against egg attacks on several Union ministers during their visits to the state recently, saying their novel peaceful method was to counter violence. Besides protesting the egg attack allegedly by BJD activists on the vehicle of Union Tribal Affairs Minister Jual Oram in Kendrapara on June 14, the party activists also sought proper probe in the gang rape and killing of a widow in Dhenkanal district recently. Party activists and leaders covered their mouths with black tapes and held placards while staging the silent protest and dharnas in areas under all the municipalities, Notified Area Councils (NACs) and Zilla Parishad Zones of the state.
“The decision to hold silent protest in a peaceful manner was taken to counter violent methods being adopted by the ruling BJD in the state,” BJP Odisha unit vice president Samir Mohanty said, referring to the egg attack on Oram’s vehicle during his Kendrapara visit.
The party activists also protested the egg attack earlier on Union Agriculture Minister Radha Mohan Singh’s vehicle in Bhubaneswar, he said.
Stating that violence has no place in a democratic set-up, the BJP leader said the frequent attacks on Central ministers by alleged “BJD goons with the cooperation of police” had posed a serious a threat to the democracy.
Alleging that investigation into the dalit woman’s gang rape and killing in Kankadahada area of Dhenkanal was conducted in a shoddy manner, Mohanty said some more people were involved in the June-12 incident, but they were not booked by the police.
The BJP leader claimed that some people close to a senior ruling BJD leader of the area were allegedly involved in the brutal gang rape and murder of the 45-year-old widow, but they have been left scot-free.
Another BJP leader Pinky Pradhan claimed that the probe into the incident, which was as barbaric as Delhi’s Nirbhaya episode, had been directionless.
Claiming that ruling BJD has been shaken by the rising popularity of BJP in the state, the BJP leaders said the regional party was now resorting to violence against their political opponents in a desperate attempt to regain its grip over the people.