Pressure on absconding BJD leader and former Orissa law minister Raghunath Mohanty mounted on Tuesday with a senior party leader advising him to surrender before police as it was sullying the ruling partys image.
Mohanty,accused of torturing his daughter-in-law Barsa Swony Choudhury for dowry,has been untraceable since March 15,the day he resigned from the Naveen Patnaik cabinet.
Though 12 days have passed since Mohanty and his family members were accused of dowry torture,so far the Human Rights Protection Cell of the Orissa Police has managed to arrest only Mohantys son and principal accused Rajashree Mohanty.
The former law minister,who hoped for a reprieve from the Orissa High Court,was disappointed when his petition to quash the dowry FIR was rejected. Mohantys anticipatory bail plea is yet to be taken up by the court.
With the opposition Congress and BJP have been attacking the government over Mohantys disappearance,BJD chief whip Prabhat Tripathy on Tuesday said the former minister should surrender before police with his family. The partys image is at stake, he said,trying to dispel rumours that powerful sections of government were protecting Mohanty.
The BJP during its state executive meeting on Sunday called for a renewed campaign against the former minister. It is highly reprehensible that a senior leader has suddenly vanished fearing arrest. If Naveen Patnaik is so much eloquent on protecting women,Mohanty should surrender before police. By not arresting him,the government seems to be protecting him, senior BJP leader Biswabhushan Harichandan said.