Bhubaneswar: The Congress on Thursday demanded a Crime Branch probe into the twin murders of a local party functionary, Bhagaban Swain (50), and a web journalist, Aditya Kumar Ranasingh (35), near Banki in Cuttack district.
A gang of miscreants had hacked the two to death in Jokalanji dam area on February 15.
The Odisha Pradesh Congress Committee (OPCC) president, Niranjan Patnaik, said the BJD MLA from Banki, Debi Ranjan Tripathy, and his supporters were involved in the murder. “We strongly condemn the incident and urge the Chief Minister to order a Crime Branch probe to identify those involved in the incident,” he added.
Earlier, Swain’s wife and Nuagan sarpanch Mamata Mohapatra had also accused the MLA’s supporters of murdering her husband.
However, there has been no reaction from the MLA till date.
Meanwhile, police have arrested two accused Balabhadra Pradhan and Jitu Swain in the case.
According to police, Swain, Ranasingh and a boy were returning to their village at Khajuripada from the Khajuripada-Nuagan panchayat office. On the way, their bike got entangled in a GI wire on the road and the three fell down.
Suddenly, around five to six assailants, who were hiding nearby, attacked them with sharp weapons. The three tried to run to safety, but the miscreants chased Swain and Ranasingh and severed their legs. However, the minor boy managed to flee and alerted nearby villagers.
Following this, villagers and Baideswar police went to the spot and rushed Swain and Ranasingh to the Banki sub-divisional hospital. While Ranasingh died on the way to the hospital, Swain later succumbed to his injuries at SCB Medical College and Hospital in Cuttack.