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Ramakanta Biswas

Even as three persons have been arrested in connection with the murder of Nayagarh cameraman Manas Swain, the police have failed to establish the actual motive behind the crime and are still groping in the dark.   

There are reports that Manas was in possession of a camera chip which subsequently led to his murder. However, there is no clarity as yet about the content of the chip and the actual motive still remains a mystery.      

The police have got some vital evidence against a woman, the owner of a Bhubaneswar-based web channel and the previous employer of Manas. The evidence allegedly hints at her role in Manas’ disappearance and murder. However, the accused woman remained absconding and tracing out her seems to have become a major challenge for the police.  

“There are evidence against the woman regarding her role in the kidnapping, murder and disposal of the body of the deceased. We have collected information about her native village and other details,” said Debi Sankar Pratap, SDPO, Chandbali. 

“The investigation is now headed to ascertain the actual motive behind the murder. It is now our main objective to establish the motive,” said Pratap. 

The mother of the accused woman said, “I only learnt about the incident from you (media). She used to visit me once or twice a year for one or two hours. Now her mobile phone is switched off.”

The accused woman had been running Dayal Ashram located under Airfield police station in Bhubaneswar where the 28-year-old cameraman was held hostage after being kidnapped from Bhadrak and subsequently murdered. It was alleged that many influential people used to visit the ashram frequently. While the inmates were staying on the ground floor, some video shooting activities were conducted in the upper floor at different occasions. However, there is no clarity yet on the content of the shoot. 

Following the murder of the cameraman inside the ashram, the inmates were shifted to Bapa Maa Sevashram in Jatani. 

“The inmates had to starve because of unavailability of food at the ashram. Who will arrange food for them. There is no trace of our madam and her phone is unreachable. Even I was not paid my salary by our madam, how can I arrange food for them,” asked the caretaker at Dayal Ashram.  

“Inspector-in-charge of Airfield police station had told us about the difficulties faced by four inmates of the ashram. Therefore, we shifted them to our ashram,” said a employee at Bapa Maa Sevashram.

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