Two years after a teenager, who was believed to be dead, returned home, the Odisha Human Rights Commission (OHRC) has asked the state government to pay Rs 2.5 lakh each to two persons arrested on charge of murdering the boy.
On December 7, 2016, Jitu Dandesana, then 13, went missing from Piplipali village in Paikamal police station area of Bargarh district.
During the investigation, the police arrested Halu Gurla and Raghab Naik on December 24, 2016 on charges of murder and destruction of evidence. The police had found a phone belonging to Dandesana in possession of the two persons.
In their chargesheet filed in February, 2017, Investigating officer Prakash Karna stated that the two had confessed to the crime and there was circumstantial evidence against them.
In 2018, Dandesana returned home safe and sound, while the two men arrested on the charge of murdering him were in jail. Two activists had then filed a complaint with OHRC.
The commission has now directed the state government to recover the compensation amount from the salary of the then Investigating Officer who was incharge of Paikamal police station. “We have no hesitation to conclude that the SDPO LN Panda while supervising the case has been negligent. As it appears that he has relied upon a decorative officer, the IO. He would have been more careful in his approach while conducting the supervision which he has not done,” the order read.
“However, since as submitted, he is at the fag end of his service career which was to end on 31st August, 2020, we reprimand him. However, we do not recommend any punishment like financial burden on him,” the order added.
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