BJP MLA from Baripada, Prakash Soren, was arrested by the Mayurbhanj police on Friday for allegedly thrashing an assistant executive engineer of the Integrated Tribal Development Agency (ITDA) for not awarding contracts to his party men. The complainant in the case Ganpati Jena, has alleged that he was thrashed, abused and threatened to give work order to Soren’s men.
He further alleged that Soren demanded Rs 5 lakh from him and threatened to kill him if he did not agree to his terms. Jena was physically assaulted with lathis and is now undergoing treatment in the hospital, police said. His condition is said to be stable.
According to Jena’s complaint, the MLA had called him to the circuit house on Thursday to enquire about the work orders. The MLA then allegedly thrashed him in a fit of rage. From there, Jena went to a nearby hospital and informed the police. A complaint in this regard was filed on Friday.
Based on the complaint, the accused MLA has been booked under IPC sections 341 (Punishment for wrongful restraint), 323 (Punishment for voluntarily causing hurt), 324 (Voluntarily causing hurt by dangerous weapons or means), 332 (voluntarily causes hurt to any person being a public servant in the discharge of his duty), 294 (using obscene words), 506 (Punishment for criminal intimidation), 353 (Assault or criminal force to deter public servant from discharge of his duty), 355 (Assault or criminal force with intent to dishonour person), 385 (Putting person in fear of injury in order to commit extortion), 120 (B) (Whoever is a party to a criminal conspiracy).
“We have produced him in court and have sought remand. There were a few others present at the circuit house as well as per our information, but the complainant has refused to identify anyone. We will be recording his statement again and if he identifies anyone else, then we will go ahead and arrest them. Further investigations into the allegations made are underway,” said Smit Parmar, Superintendent of Police, Mayurbhanj.
Soren remained unavailable for comment.
On Friday, when Soren was brought to the police station for questioning, his supporters staged a dharna and created ruckus outside the police station. “A few of his party workers and supporters had staged a dharna. We had also deployed a police force to avoid any untoward incidents. We had also detained a few of them for creating ruckus and later released them,” Parmar said.