Kandhamal riots probe commission issues notice
Bhubaneswar: The Justice A S Naidu Commission probing the 2008 Kandhamal violence has issued fresh notices to 55 people including two former Odisha police chiefs and a former home Secretary asking them to appear before it.
Apart from former Directors General of Police Gopal Nanda and Manmohan Praharaj and the then home secretary T K Mishra, summons were also issued among others to former Rajya Sabha MP Radhakanta Nayak, commission sources said on Sunday.
Former Archbishop Raphael Cheenath, Christian leader John Dayal and former superintendent of police of sensitive Kandhamal district have also been issued notices for appearing before the one-man inquiry commission, they said.
Justice A S Naidu took over the judicial probe on October 1 into the killing of VHP leader Laxamanananda Saraswati and the riots that followed in the tribal-dominated Kandhamal district and some other places in 2008.
Justice Naidu, a retired Orissa High Court judge, was named by the state government as the one man judicial commission of the Kandhamal case after the demise of Justice Sarat Chandra Mohapatra four months ago.
The state government had set up the judicial commission on September 3, 2008 following the killing of Saraswati on August 23, 2008.
At least 38 people were killed in Kandhamal alone while the total death toll in the communal riots in the aftermath of Saraswati's death was 42 in the state. About 4,000 houses besides some churches were burnt during the riot.
While a girl was burnt alive in Baragarh district during the riot, a nun was allegedly raped by mob at Baliguda in the district.
Of the 706 affidavits filed before the commission in connection with the riot, only 164 have so far been accepted while others were being examined.