Odisha Elections 2024: Khallikote Violence Victim’s Wife Accuses BJD MLA’s Husband Of Murder

Bhubaneswar: Even as DGP has formed a Special Investigation Team (SIT) to investigate the death of BJP worker Dilip Kumar Pahana in pre-poll violence in Khallikote of Odisha’s Ganjam district, the victim’s family has held local MLA’s husband Daitari Behera responsible for the ‘murder’.

Speaking to media, Dilip’s wife Sabitri alleged that Khallikote MLA Suryamani Vaidya’s husband Daitari Behera was responsible for the BJP worker’s murder. “My husband is a victim of political rivalry. After he quit BJD to join BJP, the MLA and her husband hatched a conspiracy to eliminate him. I want Daitari to be hanged as justice for my husband,” she said.

She said Dilip and his father were BJD activists for a long time and close to the MLA. Dilip contested in the last panchayat election, but lost due to opposition from Daitari. The rivalry between the two has been going on since then. The BJD nominated Suryamani again for the constituency in this election and Dilip switched over to BJP.

“Around 15 days back, the MLA and her husband along with their supporters had come to our house. They requested Dilip to forget the old issues and return to BJD as Daitari felt threat to his wife’s prospects in the election. But my husband turned them down. This led Daitari to eliminate Dilip,” Sabitri said.

Dilip’s father has also made the same allegation and said four persons with swords attacked his family as they had joined the BJP.

Daitari has refuted the allegation as baseless and said he was being targeted for political interests. “The BJD workers are not involved in the incident. The allegations are politically motivated and our names are being falsely dragged into it,” he said.

It may be noted that clashes broke out at Srikrushnasaranpur village under Khallikote police limits when a group objected to the erection of party banners by another group late on Wednesday. Dilip and three others were seriously injured. Dillip succumbed while undergoing treatment at MKCG Medical College and Hospital in Berhampur.

The police have arrested nine persons in connection with the violent incident and some others including the prime accused are still absconding.

Ordering investigation into the incident by SIT, the DGP said, “The SIT will arrest the rest accused persons early, collect proper evidence (scientific/ forensic/digital) and submit chargesheet within 30 days for early trial of the case. The SIT will give status report to IG of Police, Southern Range from time to time.”

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