Odisha ACF’s Death: Police To Grill Paralakhemundi DFO


Paralakhemundi: Police in Gajapati district are going to interrogate Divisional Forest Officer (DFO) of Paralakhemundi, Sangram Keshari Behera, in connection with the death of Assistant Conservator of Forests (ACF) Soumya Ranjan Mohapatra, who succumbed to burn injuries in a Cuttack hospital on July 13.

SP (Gajapati)  Tapan Kumar Patnaik told the media on Wednesday that the Soumya’s father has lodged a complaint against the DFO. He will therefore be brought under the purview of the investigation, the SP added.

“Police have interrogated the ACF’s family members in their house at Begunia village in Balasore district and the deceased’s wife, Bidyabharati Panda, and her family members at Gudagan village in Mayurbhanj district. After cross-checking the statements of these two families, police will interrogate the DFO in the right time,” the SP said.

Patnaik stated that a Crime Branch team has arrived in Gajapati district to assist the local police in their investigation.

A cyber expert in the Crime Branch team will trace the call details of the two mobile phones that police seized from Bidyabharati, Besides, the call details of the DFO will also be traced, he added.

The SP further said that while the police have videographed the dying declaration of the ACF, they are yet to receive the post-mortem report. “As this is a complicated case, police are investigating it from all angles,” he pointed out.

Asked about the complaint lodged against the woman OIC of Gurandi police station, Mamatarani Panda, by the ACF’s family for allegedly detaining the ambulance van carrying the injured ACF for more than an hour, the SP said that the OIC will be interrogated on this matter.

“Apart from this, the OIC will be interrogated as to why and under what circumstances she had come to Paralakhemundi when there was no departmental order to leave the Gurandi police station,” the SP said.

Contacted, the OIC said she cannot say anything right now as the investigation is underway.

Also Read: Odisha ACF’s Death Gets Messier With Leaked Audio Conversation, Handwritten ‘I Hate You’ Note

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