Kanas/Bhubaneswar: With the death of Sandip Hati, a retrenched Home Guard, who was cremated at his native village Haladiapada in Kanas block in Puri district this afternoon after his death at the SCB Medical College and Hospital in the early morning hours, the opposition political parties have come down heavily on the state government particularly the chief minister.
“It was the chief minister for whom the desperate Home Guard had gone to commit suicide. The chief minister, therefore, is responsible for his death. Let the chief minister apologise to the people of Odisha and take necessary steps to ensure that such unfortunate incident will never happen in future,” leader of the Opposition Narasingh Mishra told media persons today.
In his reaction, state BJP president Basant Panda said since the death of Sandip Hati is the outcome of the gross failure of the inept and comatose government, his party feels that the family of Hati needs adequate compensation and a job to one of his family members as an assured source of livelihood.
After the Hati’s death, his body was carried to his native village Haladiapada in Mahaprayana Rath. As soon as the hearse van arrived at the village, the family members did not accept the body while demanding adequate compensation and a job to one of the members.
The family members finally accepted the body after their prolonged discussion with Puri sub collector, local MLA Umakant Samantray and BJP state president Basant Panda.
While the local MLA promised Rs 3 lakh compensation to the family, the Red Cross provided Rs 25,000 for cremation of Hati.
The last rites of the Home Guard was performed later.
“The state government should provide a job to my daughter. How can she live without any help? How can she take care of her child?” Sarojini Samartha, mother-in-law of Hati told media persons with tears rolling down.
“My son had redressed his grievances. But the state government did not reinstate him. The Odisha government and chief minister Naveen Patnaik are responsible for the death of my son,” said Gangadhar Hati, father of the deceased.
Talking to media persons, Swapneswar Pradhan, member of Odisha State Home Guards Federation, said the government should pay a compensation of Rs 10 lakh to the family of Hati and a job to his family member to sustain their livelihood.
Contacted, Director General of Police (DGP) KB Singh said the family of Hati has been provided Rs 25,000 for his cremation. “Efforts are being made to provide job to one of his family members”, he added.
Singh also informed that the Bhubaneswar DCP is investigating into the causes and circumstances for which Hati was terminated from his service.
It may be mentioned that a scuffle had ensued between the police and the members of the Odisha State Home Guards Federation in Bhubaneswar on March 22, 2013 while the Federation was on a civil disobedience agitation.
After this incident, the state government had retrenched 76 Home Guards including Hati. After losing his job and unable to maintain his family, he had redressed his grievances to the government but to no avail. Finding no other alternative, he tried to commit suicide after setting himself on fire near Naveen Niwas in the night on September 2.