Body of missing minor girl found from forest; rape & murder suspected

Baripada: The body of a minor girl, missing since yesterday was recovered from a forest near Gurudabasa village under Betnoti of Mayurbhanj district early this morning.

It is being suspected that the Class IV girl was raped and subsequently murdered, police sources said. A youth, identified as Jami Kanta Mahanta of the same village has been detained in connection with the incident.

According to reports, the girl had accompanied Mahanta to the Raja celebrations Friday afternoon.

“Mahanta called the girl  and asked her to accompany him to the Raja Parba. However he returned in the evening alone. When family members of the girl asked her whereabouts, he ignored their questions. After a frantic search, we found the girl’s body in the forest today,” said a villager.

Parents of the deceased girl alleged that Mahanta raped and later strangulated her to death. Later, police recovered the body of the minor girl and sent it for autopsy.

Meanwhile, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik conveyed his sympathy to the family members of the victim. The CM announced an ex-gratia of Rs 5 lakh for the deceased family and also directed for a speedy trial of the case.