In a shameful incident, Aswajit Rout, vice-president of the Biju Janata Dal (BJD)'s youth wing in Jajpur district was arrested along with eight others in a truck theft case on Tuesday. They were forwarded to the court.
Police have seized Rs 2.45 lakh from their possession.
As per reports, a truck was stolen on September 11 from a crusher near Bhadanga under Dharmasala PS. The police launched a probe after receiving the complaint and busted a truck theft gang.
While six members of the gang hail from Badachana, Dharmasala and Balichandrapur areas, three others are from Bihar and Kolkata. The gang stole trucks from Dharmasala and Badachana area and cut them into pieces before selling the scraps in Kolkata.
BJD youth leader Rout, hailing from Sunguda area under Badachana PS, also belonged to the gang.
"We were keeping a close watch on Mantu Rout, a watchman at the crusher. We had also traced Ramesh Parida, a local's link in Kolkata. The members from Kolkata were coming here to take more vehicles and they were nabbed," informed Pramod Mallick, SDPO, Jajpur.
Further, Mallick added, "We nabbed six persons in the local area who conspired the plan. Three persons from Kolkata, who dismantled the vehicles and cut them into pieces, were also nabbed. We have also seized a car in which they were travelling in."
Meanwhile, the district Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) wing trained guns on BJD over the incident after Rout was arrested.
"This incident is a curtain raiser from the 'tall claims' made by the Naveen government's 'Swach Sasan' since 22 years. Be it workers, students or youth leaders, everyone from BJD has involvement in criminal or antisocial activities in some or the other way. All these people also have a great chance of escaping from the hands of law," said Sarbeswar Behura, a BJP leader.
Further, Behura went on to add, "With such intentions, these people have taken BJD as a medium and the party is safeguarding them. The incident of Aswajit Rout getting arrested in a theft case is condemnable and the time has come when the leaders and workers of BJD should opt for self-analysis."
However, BJD's response over the matter couldn't be obtained.