Pradeep Singh

Police on Sunday sent the two mobile phones of deceased BJD Zilla Parishad (ZP) member Dharmendra Sahoo for forensic examination. 

The cops had recovered the two phones near the residence of Sahoo in Bhubaneswar during a search operation conducted with the help of dog squad on Saturday. 

Evidence from the mobile phones are expected to unfold the mystery behind the death of the BJD leader as hours before his death, Sahoo had mentioned about some video clips being stored in the two cell phones.

The BJD leader was found hanging in his residence in Sishupalgarh area on the outskirts of Bhubaneswar on Saturday. He was the member of ZP Zone 11 in Nimapada. 

Around four hours prior to his death, Sahoo had shared a post on social media in which he mentioned about some video clips stored in the two mobile phones. 

This has created suspicion in the minds of many about the contents of the videos. “All the videos are in my two mobile phones. Please bring all those to public limelight,” Sahoo had written in Odia.

It was earlier reported that Sahoo had attempted suicide and taken to a private hospital in a critical condition. He later returned to his residence after recuperating, only a few days back.

Meanwhile, Bhubaneswar DCP Prateek Singh informed that apart from the two mobile phones, the CCTV near the spot has also been seized.

"It will be sent for forensic examination after submission before the Magistrate. Our investigation is underway," he added.

On the other hand, the Opposition BJP on Saturday alleged the role of State School and Mass Education Minister and local MLA Samir Ranjan Dash in the case.

"The Bharatiya Janata Party's demands are that the Minister be brought to the purview of investigation and he should resign immediately," said BJP leader Pravati Parida.  

When asked, district working president of Congress, Lalatendu Das said, "Rs 80 lakh money transaction, an extramarital affair and political enmity may be the reasons behind the ZP member ending his life. As of now, School and Mass Education Minister Samir Ranjan Dash has emerged as the man behind the entire episode. I would like to request the DCP to hand over the case to a high-ranking officer."

Responding to the allegations, Dash said, “I have no knowledge of the matter. I can only speak about it after understanding the case.”

Meanwhile, the deceased's father-in-law, Dushashan Swain, demanded that police should investigate why his nephew had left the house just before the incident and should immediately ascertain the identification of the person who is seen in the CCTV footage. 

Regarding recovery of deleted files, cyber expert Lingaraj Sethi said, "Deleted files can be retrieved but the percentage of recovery can only be said after inspecting the device."