Vikash Sharma

Cuttack: Police on Sunday detained one suspect in connection with the brutal murder of Salipur BJP leader Kulamani Baral and his associate Dibyasingh Baral. Moreover, the cops have registered a case based on the FIR lodged by deceased Kulamani's son Ramakant Baral.

In his complaint, Ramakant has named 12 persons including eight people from Nrutanga village for their alleged involvement in the brutal murder of his father and relative.

"I have lodged a complaint naming 12 persons for killing my father over political rivalry. The incident is the fallout of the exposure of massive corruption in the PMAY in the region," said deceased Kulamani's son Ramakant.

Ramakant alleged that the attack was carried out at the behest of Odisha Law Minister Pratap Jena. "Another BJP worker was murdered in 2018 and as the cops failed to take exemplary action over the killing, now they killed my father. Sadly, the Minister is shielding the accused," he added.

Local residents said that Kulamani was a popular leader and played a key role in exposing corruption in the region.

On Saturday evening, unidentified miscreants attacked Kulamani, who was BJP's Salipur Mandal in-charge and his associate Dibyasingh when they were returning home on a bike. Kulamani was also the former block chairman of Mahanga.

Following the attack, they were immediately shifted to Mahanga Community Health Centre (CHC) where doctors declared Kulamani dead while Dibyasingh was shifted to SCB Cuttack in a critical condition.

Dibyasingh succumbed to the injuries while undergoing treatment at SCB Medical College and Hospital in the wee hours today.