Odishatv Bureau

The state-wide protests over lady teacher Mamita Meher murder case refused to die down notwithstanding the claims of Minister of State for Home Dibya Shankar Mishra that he has nothing to do with the heinous crime.

Breaking his silence 21 days after the sensational murder, Mishra on Friday issued a two-page statement in which he offered to resign from his post and also retire from public life if his involvement in the case is proved.  

However, the statement has failed to pacify the protestors who continued to up their ante and remained firmed on their demands seeking ouster of the Minister, his arrest and a CBI probe into the case.

The Opposition BJP today observed bandh at six different places in the State and also gheraoed the offices of the Collectors and SPs in some districts. In Nayagarh district, a mega rally was taken out by BJP workers from party headquarters to the office of the Superintendent of Police demanding justice for Mamita. 

Similarly, the members of women wing of BJP held a mega rally in Cuttack and burnt effigies of Minister Dibya Shankar Mishra. 
BJP’s central team, which is on a visit to Odisha, held a press conference in Bhubaneswar and demanded a CBI inquiry and resignation of Minister Dibya Shankar stating that the main accused in the case, Gobinda Sahu is his representative. 

“On moral grounds and also on the basis of suspicion and doubts, the MoS for Home must step down for the sake of a free and fair investigation and trial,” said BJP’s national women’s wing president and part of the Central team, V Srinivasan. 

“What strategies were chalked out by the Minister in his Raipur residence? Why Gobinda Sahu was taken to the house? The BJD must answer the questions. BJP will not step back from its demands,” said Odisha BJP Mahila Morcha president Smruti Patnaik. 

On the other hand, hundreds of activists of youth Congress led by MLAs Sura Routray and Md Moquim had a scuffle with police personnel at Sishu Bhawan Square after they were stopped from marching towards Naveen Niwas, the residence of Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik. 

“If MoS for Home Dibya Shankar Mishra is not arrested immediately, the protests which are going on in the heart of the city will be extended to rural areas,” Moquim said.

Responding to the protest, BJD spokesperson Pratap Deb said, “The Opposition parties are trying to politicise the issue keeping in view the upcoming panchayat election.”

Notably, apart from denying any involvement in the case MoS for Home Dibya Shankar Mishra also 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 for alleged malicious smear campaign.

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