Police on Monday arrested a 20-year-old youth, a day after he allegedly hacked a former Vice-Chancellor (VC) of Sambalpur University, Prof. Dhrubaraj Naik to death at the latter's residence at Sargiguda village under Laikera block of Jharsuguda district.
The accused has been identified as Prabin Dharua of Kuanrmal village under Laikera block of the district.
Dharua was detained from the nearest jungle by the Laikera Police within two hours of the incident and taken for interrogation.
According to Arjun Naik, the younger brother of the 83-year-old deceased, Dharua stormed into Naik's residence at around 11:30 am on Sunday when the former was not present there. Later, when he reached the house at around 12.30 pm, Dharua reportedly asked him for Rs 100.
However, Naik refused and confronted him for trespassing into the house. Irate over the refusal, the accused attacked Naik with an axe and fled the spot.
Naik, who sustained critical injuries in the attack, was immediately rushed to a private hospital in the district. He was declared brought dead by the doctors.
Though the exact reason behind the murderous attack is yet to be ascertained, Laikera Police has started an investigation into the matter.
Sources said, Naik, who was an environmentalist, had created a jungle and ponds near the village. Earlier his son used the ponds for aqua farming and later the former Sambalpur VC had also adopted the farming.
But due to some age-related ailments, he could not continue the farming and leased out the ponds. Dharua along with some villagers allegedly used to steal fishes from the ponds. A case in this regard was also lodged against Dharua and some others at the Laikera police station some two months ago.
Following this, Dharua was arrested and forwarded to the court around 20 days back.