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Odishatv Bureau

Balangir: The CBI will investigate into the brutal rape and murder of a minor dalit girl of Sargipalli village under Khaprakhol police station in Balangir district on May 22 last year.

Talking to the media, Balangir Collector Ashish Thakre said since the CBI has taken up the case, the district police will take care of it which is a normal procedure. “Whatever logistic support the CBI will seek, it would be provided by the district police,” he added.

It may be mentioned that Snehalata Chhatria, a dalit minor girl and a Class X student of Sargipalli village had gone to the Harishankar nullah near the village on May 22, 2015. But as she did not return, her family members had a frantic search and later found her charred body from inside a bush near the nullah.

The family members later lodged a complaint in the Khaprakhol police station alleging that the deceased was raped and murdered. But as the local police failed to nab the assailants after a month of the incident, there was a statewide uproar by several dalit outfits in the district and the state backed by opposition political parties.

Bowing to the overwhelming protest, the state government later ordered a Crime Branch probe into the case. The Crime Branch in course of its investigation had sent the blood samples of 11 local youths to the State Forensic Laboratory for test and arrested two persons. But as it failed to submit its charge sheet in specified time frame, the court granted bail to the two arrested persons.

“I did not get the justice either by the police and the district administration after one year. I don’t know what the law of the land is and what the government is doing. I was shocked when I watched the TV news that the two accused who were arrested by the police, have been released on bail. But as I came to know that the CBI has taken up the case, I hope that it would be able to arrest the accused who had killed my daughter,” Arta Chhatria, father of the deceased, told media persons here today.

Talking to OTV, government prosecutor Ashok Mahanta said the two arrested accused managed to get bail from the court due to sheer negligence of the Crime Branch as it failed to submit its charge sheet in specified time frame.

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