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Rashmi Rekha Das

Bolangir police have come in for criticism for housing a mentally-challenged person in jail terming him an accused. 

According to sources, S Paiti Raju was sent to jail in an ATM theft case six months back. During his stay in the jail, Raju’s fellow inmates came to know that the latterwas a mentally-challenged person. After learning it, jail superintendent contacted Raju’s family in Vizag and was shocked to know that his family members had performed Raju’s last rites as he did not return for six months. 

Raju’s family members after learning about Raju’s whereabouts reached Bolangir two days back. From them, the police came to learn that Raju was not a criminal. He was not mentally sound for which he was undergoing treatment. He ran away from a train while being taken for treatment and reached Bolangir. 

When asked, Town Police and Sub-divisional Police Officer refused to make any comment in this regard.

Raju’s uncle Seikh Mudina said, “For six months Raju was in jail. His parents recently came to know about it and sent us to take Raju back home. Yesterday bail was not granted. Today we will leave for Vizag after Raju will avail a bail.”

Raju’s lawyer Tusharkant Mohapatra said, “Town Police forwarded Raju in a theft case. As police had not recovered any money from him, court had released him.  However, Raju found it hard to get a bailer as he belonged to Andhra Pradesh. His family members got my number from Jail Superintendent and   contacted me to get a bailer for Raju. Today, he got released.”

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