A day after a disturbing video of cruel torture to a father-son duo from Khordha district went viral on social media creating massive outcry in Odisha, shocking details about the involvement of a local group identifying themselves as members of ‘Manabavad Sangathan (Humanitarian Organisation) in the incident has began to emerge.
According to information, the so-called Humanitarian Organisation which has now found itself in a soup over allegedly torturing people in Taliban style is said to have been functioning like a full-fledged political outfit for years. Apart from meting out harassment to the man named Maguni Nayak and his son in Khordha yesterday, members of the organisation have also been charged of murdering a man.
Meanwhile, the political link of the head of the organisation, Manas Das, a lawyer by profession, has come to fore, making the matter even murkier.
A video has emerged from social media which shows the influence of Das, fondly called Guruji by the members of his organisation. In the video, the exact date and place of where it was shot is yet to be ascertained, Das could be seen receiving a royal welcome with bodyguards accompanying him from all sides and people scurrying after him. At a point in the video, some people could also been seen showering flowers at him while others fighting to take blessings by touching his feet.
On the other hand, many people have now come out to express allegations of torture by the members of the organisation on the behest of Das.
“If people refused to join the organisation, the members would terrorise and torture them. I myself have paid Rs 5000 to the organisation,” alleged a complainant.
As per sources, Das formed Manabavad Sangathan in 2005 and eventually joined Biju Janata Dal (BJD) in 2018. Under the patronage of the political party, the organisation continues to spread its organisation across the State.
Rules of the organisation decree that anyone interested to avail its membership can do so by registering with a meagre fee of Rs 30. Thereafter, the members have to give donations of thousands of rupees as per their capacity. Anyone found complaining or refusing to pay were often being tortured or threatened for life but none dared to complaint against Das and his core associates.
After telecast of the news on OTV and registration of a complaint against torture to Maguni Nayak and his son, Begunia police has now booked seven persons.
Speaking in this connection, Maguni Nayak who is a resident from Kadaba village under Bolagarh block of Khordha said, “Many like me are being tortured by Manas Das. One Satyabrata Nayak of Manpur had also died after being harassed by the organisation. I demand that these cases should be probed and Manas Das must be arrested immediately."
Asked for comments on the development in the case, Laxmikant Satpathy, the IIC of Begunia said, “As the name of Manas Das has emerged in the case, we will probe the angle. However, till the conclusion of investigation, we cannot say whether he was involved or not. We will certainly reach out to him if his involvement is proved.”
Meanwhile, Manas Das has dismissed all charges brought against him.
“The man who tortured the father-son duo is not from my organisation. I am in no way involved in the incident. Those who are behind the torture will get punishment. I am not coming out of my house due to Covid restrictions,” claimed Das.