Rashmi Rekha Das

Cuttack wing of Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Saturday came down heavily on the Odisha government, holding it responsible for the death of young woman cricketer Rajashree Swain.

The BJP activists led by Lalatendu Badu staged a protest outside the office of the Odisha Cricket Association (OCA) seeking an impartial probe into this matter.

Talking to the media, a leader of the BJP Mahila Morcha said, “She is a renowned athlete. She was an all-rounder. OCA President Pranab Prakash Das is behind her murder. There was no need for the young athlete to go to a dense forest in Athagarh for committing suicide when she was staying in Cuttack. She was mentally disturbed due to OCA’s favoritism in the selection procedure.”

"At a time when Odisha Chief Minister is busy promoting the FIH Men’s Hockey World Cup, why he is turning a blind eye towards the injustice meted out to the woman athlete. All we want is an impartial probe into the incident to ascertain the actual reason behind her death. Rajashree was a strong-minded and a happy-going girl. She would not take such drastic steps unless she was under some unbearable pressure. The Odisha government has to launch a high-level investigation in 24 hours”, she demanded.

Lalatendu said, “Rajashree had gone missing on January 11. But no action was taken to trace her. Like Rajashree, there must be many athletes who are under mental pressure. Sports Minister Tusharkanti Behera has kept a mum on this issue although Rajashree belonged to his constituency.”

It is pertinent to mention that the 22-year-old woman cricketer had gone missing under mysterious circumstances on January 11 and was later found hanging from a tree in a dense forest near Athagarh in Cuttack district on Friday.

Reported by Debasis Mohanty, OTV