Bhubaneswar

Who Is Mohan Lal Sharma? BJD Gives Mamita Row Fresh Twist: ‘Main Accused’s Lawyer BJP Member’; Check Details Here

Bhubaneswar: The political row over the Mamita Meher murder case has taken a new turn.

While the Odisha Assembly has witnessed high drama by the BJP and Congress over the murder case, forcing Speaker Surjya Narayan Patro to adjourn the House everyday since the Winter Session began on December 1, the ruling BJD has given the controversy a fresh twist in an attempt to counter the Opposition.

The BJD on Tuesday alleged that the BJP had engaged a party member, Mohan Lal Sharma, who is also a lawyer, to fight the case for Govind Sahu, the prime accused in the Mamita murder case.

The BJD alleged that the saffron party had hatched a plot to save Sahu as it has no evidence against Minister of State for Home Dibya Shankar Mishra.

The ruling party claimed that Sharma was a BJP leader from Kantabanji in Bolangir district.

BJD spokesperson and MLA Pratap Deb said that Sharma was appearing for Sahu at the court of Additional District Judge and that it exposed the BJP’s double standards.

“The BJP is shedding crocodile tears for Mamita Meher. Sharma is an active BJP member and participated in the party’s Jan Sampark Yatra and other programmes in the area. Besides, he was also in the race for a BJP ticket for the Kantabanji Assembly seat in the 2019 polls,” he said.

Deb said that the BJP was trying to save the main accused as it has no evidence against the minister. “The BJP indulged in such cheap politics in the Pari case even after the Orissa High Court expressed satisfaction over the SIT probe into the incident,” he said.

“Politicising deaths has become a habit of the BJP. But by providing legal aid to a murder accused in such a sensational case, the BJP has breached all barriers,” the BJD said.

“Sharma is known for his close ties with Union Education and Skill Development Minister Dharmendra Pradhan, former state BJP president Basant Panda and other senior party members,” the BJD alleged.

Responding to the allegations, Sharma on Wednesday said that he was a “supporter of the BJP, not a member”.

“I’m a strong supporter of the BJP, not a member. I have never wanted to contest elections. The BJP is a nationalist party and nationalism is in my family’s blood as my father was a Jan Sangh worker,” he said.

“I was a government counsel when Ayub Khan was MLA. Later I stepped down. Caste, creed, religion, all these are immaterial for me. All I do is fight cases with sincerity,” he added.

Sahu, president of Sunshine English Medium School at Mahaling in Kalahandi district, has confessed to killing Mamita, a teacher at the school, on October 8.

But the Opposition BJP and Congress see a larger political conspiracy, and have demanded the dismissal of Minister of State for Home Dibya Shankar Mishra for his alleged links with Sahu and involvement in the murder.

The Mamita murder case has rocked the state, with the Opposition carrying out street protests across Odisha during which several state ministers came under egg attacks. The issue has paralysed the Assembly since the Winter Session began.

OB Bureau

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