Vikash Sharma

Bhubaneswar: The recent arrest of suspended IAS officer Bijay Ketan Upadhyay over graft charges has stirred a war of words with opposition parties training guns and terming it as a mere stunt by the Odisha government to shore up its image.

Odisha BJP General Secretary, Prithviraj Harichandan said, “At a time when atrocities against women are on the rise, it seems to be a stunt by the Odisha government to save its own face.”

Harichandan further stated that, “There could be some truth behind the suspended IAS officer's innocence plea.”

Odisha Congress chief Niranjan Patnaik too took a jibe at the State government by stating that, “There is no need to boast of arresting an IAS officer for taking Rs 1 lakh bribe as nobody knows what is happening to scams running into crores of rupees.”

No comments on the allegations could be obtained from the Odisha government or the ruling BJD.

Earlier, Odisha government had suspended Bijay Ketan Upadhyay, who was posted as the Director of Horticulture department, after he was allegedly caught by vigilance sleuths on December 30, 2019 for accepting a bribe of Rs 1 lakh.

While Upadhyay was appearing before the special vigilance court on Tuesday in connection with the matter, he refuted the charges against him claiming, “I didn’t receive any money from anybody and it is a conspiracy by some officers at the top level.”