Odisha Minister’s Murder: No Mental Problems, Gopal Did It To Take Revenge, Say Friends

Berhampur/Bhubaneswar: Two close friends of Gopal Krushna Das, the accused in alleged murder of Odisha minister Naba Kishore Das, have claimed that their friend has no mental problem and has committed the crime to take revenge.

One of Gopal’s friends, Abhaya Kumar Sahu, who runs a shop at Industrial Area in Ankuli of Berhampur city in Ganjam district, said Gopal fired at the minister to take revenge for the humiliation by the latter.

Elaborating further, Abhaya said, “When Naba Das was Congress MLA of Jharsuguda, Gopal was posted as ASI there. On a particular day, Gopal was on duty to enforce wearing helmets by bikers in the town. When then MLA was going on a scooter with somebody without a helmet, Gopal stopped him for violation of the traffic regulation. Agitated over it, Naba slapped him in front of everybody.”

“I know Gopal since his childhood. Both of us got into Odisha Police when Abhay Kumar was district SP. Later, I quit the job and started business while Gopal continued to serve. He used to come to my shop and speak about his job,” Abhaya said.

“Following the slapping incident, I had met him. He was very upset by the incident. I had advised him to take leave for some days and try to forget the incident,” said Abhaya.

“Gopal is a very good person. So far as I know, he does not have any kind of mental problems. Since he is a self-righteous man, he could not tolerate the humiliation and fired at the minister to take revenge,” he added.

Another Gopal’s friend and classmate in Khallikote College during 1985, Pradip Behera, who is an advocate, said that killing of a minister by a cop definitely brings a bad image to Berhampur. “Gopal was very calm, quiet and ambitious since his student times. I still don’t believe that he fired at the minister and killed him,” he said.

“As far as I know there is no mention of Gopal’s mental illness in his Service Book. There should be a detailed  inquiry into his health condition as his family members and the doctor are admitting it,” said Pradip.

Gopal joined the police service on July 8, 1992 and was promoted from from senior Havildar post to the ASI on September 9, 2009. He has bagged 18 medals and 8 monetary awards for his appropriate process of investigation into the cases.

According to sources, his character has been mentioned ‘Good’ in the Service Book. But he was warned once during his service period for a silly mistake. But nowhere in the Service Book it has been mentioned that Gopal was mentally ill, the sources said.

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