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Kandhamal riots accused out on bail,takes oath as MLA

BJP leader and a prime accused in last year's communal riot in Kandhamal,Manoj Pradhan,was released from jail here on Sunday,a day after being granted interim bail to be able to take oath as an MLA.

Written by Agencies | Phulbani |
July 5, 2009 1:00:29 pm

BJP leader and a prime accused in last year’s communal riot in Kandhamal,Manoj Pradhan,was released from jail here on Sunday,a day after being granted interim bail to be able to take oath as an MLA. Pradhan,who was lodged in jail since his arrest in October,2008 on charge of murder,riot and arson,was set free after furnishing required documents,a day after a fast track court here granted him conditional bail for 15 days in two cases. He had earlier got bail in 12 other cases.

Elected to Orissa assembly from G Udaygiri segment in the recent elections,the riot accused was granted bail on the basis of Orissa High Court’s order. Pradhan had earlier moved the High Court seeking bail to be able to take oath as a member of the Orissa assembly. Refuting the charges against him,Pradhan told reporters soon after his release: “I have been falsely implicated. The charges levelled against me are fabricated and fictitious.” The riot accused,who is facing charges in seven murder cases,six cases relating to house torching and an attempt to murder case,said he would soon take oath as a legislator and work for the development of his constituency.

State BJP president Suresh Pujari said Pradhan was likely to take oath as an MLA on Tuesday and the party had urged the assembly speaker and police to provide adequate security to Pradhan. “We fear Pradhan may become a target of Maoists outside the jail,” Pujari said.

Pradhan left for his native place at Raikia in the tribal dominated district soon after being released and was likely to proceed to Bhubaneswar shortly to take oath as a legislator. While all other 146 MLAs have already taken oath as members of the Legislative Assembly,Pradhan could not perform the constitutional duty as he remained inside prison. Pradhan,who was initially lodged in G Udaygiri jail,had been shifted to the district headquarters jail at Phulbani after the elections. He had defeated his nearest Congress rival Ajayanti Pradhan by over 20,000 votes in the assembly elections,results of which were announced on May 16.

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First published on: 05-07-2009 at 01:00:29 pm
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