8 arrested for firing at police from MLAs flat

Bhubaneswar: A group of people fired at policemen from a Congress MLA`s residence here on Tuesday, following which eight persons, including three with criminal antecedents, were arrested, the police said.

An FIR was also registered against the MLA Ramesh Jena who had been accused under section 147 (rioting), 149 (unlawful assembly), 353 (assaulting government servants), 307 (attempt to murder) and 332 (causing hurt) of the IPC.

The MLA was, however, not arrested though his associates were taken into custody.

Police made the arrests after an hour long firing from the flat of the MLA in a building in Kharavela Nagar area.

However, no one was injured in the firing.

"The police had gone to the building after receiving complaint from residents that some criminals were holed up in the flat," said Commissioner of Police B K Sharma.

The MLA did not open the door when police asked him to cooperate in arresting people who were allegedly roaming in the area with fire arms.

"While the police was trying to open the door, they were fired upon by the goons from inside the house," said DCP Himansu Lal adding that subsequently they were nabbed.

Of the eight persons arrested, three had criminal antecedents, Lal said adding the police were verifying the antecedents of the other persons.

Jena also had a criminal background as he was the main accused in a murder case in Berhampur town of Ganjam district.

The Congress MLA from Sana Khemundi was now on bail.

Jena, on the other hand, alleged that police targeted him due to his political affiliation. "It is a conspiracy against me," he said.

The MLA, however, admitted that his personal security officer, provided to him by Ganjam police, had fired two rounds suspecting that the persons knocking at the door were his opponents.

"The police did not inform me before coming to my house. How can one know that the persons in plain clothes were policemen," he asked.