Rajendra Prasad Mohapatra

The Congress on Saturday slammed Odisha’s Minister of State (Home), Captain Dibyashankar Mishra for trying to suppress media freedom in the State over the sensational murder of Kalahandi school teacher Mamita Meher and his alleged involvement in the case. 

Earlier on Friday, breaking his long and conspicuous silence over the murder case, Mishra had claimed that his family has filed defamation suits against the State’s leading media house, Odisha Television Limited (OTV), digital media platform Odisha Reporter (OR) and another private Odia news channel.

Mishra also termed the telecast of the news which carried his name on the basis of the allegations made by the family members of Mamita and several other politicians ‘malicious'.

Meanwhile, referring to Mishra's claims, the head of Congress Media Cell Ganeswar Behera said that in his statement, the Minister didn't refute the allegations against him completely. “His (Mishra’s) defamation suit is baseless,” Behera said.

"The Minister's statement is meaningless and baseless. He has not categorically refuted any charges leveled against him. He is trying to suppress the freedom of media which is not at all acceptable. Congress party strongly condemns this kind of conduct by the Minister," said Behera.

"Mishra should tender his resignation immediately. He should face the investigation and prove himself innocent. Otherwise, Congress will intensify the agitations across Odisha," he warned.

It is worth mentioning that the Opposition BJP and Congress have been training guns at Mishra demanding his expulsion and arrest in connection with Mamita murder case.

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