Arguments in Naidu panel to begin from May 13

Cuttack: The Justice A S Naidu Commission of Inquiry, probing into the unsavory incident of a brawl between a judicial magistrate and police in Rourkela, on Saturday dismissed the petition of Rourkela Bar Association (RBA) to recall the then SP of Rourkela Deeptesh Patnayak for fresh examination.

RBA had also sought to enhance the scope of the commission. In its order, the commission said till date it has already examined as many as 41 witnesses out of 43 affidavits it had received and some of the witnesses have been asked 100 to 150 questions to record enough evidences.
"There is no necessity to recall any further witness," the commission said urging the parties not to make any attempts to delay the process of the enquiry.

The commission, however, very reluctantly gave a last-minute chance to the witnesses R C Bal and A K Das to depose before it on May 12. Both Bal and Das had filed affidavits before the Commission but they have not turned up to depose or face cross examination before them despite being summoned several times. "Whether the witnesses turn up or not for their depositions on May 12, the commission shall proceed on holding arguments from May 13," Justice Naidu made it clear in his order.

As directed, witness S C Majhi, who had filed his affidavit before the commission was examined during the day. RBA had earlier sought permission to withdraw itself from participating in the proceedings of the commission alleging that the state government had no trust on its findings since Patnayak was promoted in the meantime.

The government in an affidavit however, refuted the allegation and said Patnayak has not been promoted to the rank of DIG as alleged in the RBA petition. "It is not true that the government has promoted Deeptesh Patnayak," the government affidavit had said adding that the assertion in the RBA petition is "incorrect".