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Odishatv Bureau

Bhubaneswar: In the wake of the alleged involvement of BMC Mayor Anant Jena in the mysterious death of Asutosh Mohanty alias Rishi, an engineering student of Centurion University, and a sex scandal, the BJP today decided to intensify its agitation.

Briefing media persons here, BJP state general secretary Prithviraj Harichandan said while the issue of alleged sex scandal involving BMC Mayor and BJD secretary Anant Narayan Jena has spread like wildfire in the state, he has been embroiled in another serious case relating to the murder of Rishi, which was hushed up by the commissionerate police citing it as an unnatural death (UD) case.

“We have urged the commissionerate police to reopen this case for a fresh investigation. We also demand that the sex video clipping which is circulated in the social media should be referred to a central forensic laboratory to ascertain the veracity on the involvement of the BMC Mayor in this scandal. Let the chief minister give an order to this effect without further delay,” Harichandan said.

Also read: Student Cong demands mayor’s scalp in ‘sex scandal’

He also said the BJP will intensify its agitation in the state if the state government does not take up the matter seriously. “As our party has taken up this matter seriously, we have given a one-day ‘chaka jam’ agitation in all municipalities and notified councils in the state from 10 AM to 12 PM tomorrow in which we will stop vehicular traffic. We will continue our agitation in the coming days and if necessary, we will give Bhubaneswar bandh call until the chief minister and his government have not taken stern action in this matter. We will not allow the state government to indulge in such unethical and immoral activities,” Harichandan pointed out.

In his reaction, senior BJP leader and Union Petroleum and Natural Gas minister Dharmendra Pradhan said the allegation brought against the BMC Mayor is serious. “If the allegations against him are found true, it would be a matter of grave concern,” he added.

Stating that doubts have been raised over the death of Rishi as his family members have alleged that he has been murdered, Pradhan said the local police have not made serious investigation into the matter.

He also said that attempts were made earlier to hush up the case. But the incident has come to the fore after a series of debates and demands. “Since there are allegations against some influential persons involved in the mysterious death of Rishi, time has come for a thorough probe into the investigation failing which people will lose their confidence on the police,” Pradhan pointed out.

Asked about the step the party supremo is going to take on this matter, BJD spokesperson Samir Dash said the investigation is currently underway. "If any proof is found against the Mayor, the chief minister will take appropriate action," he added.

Also read: Mayor must resign to allow a fair probe

Meanwhile, there was a scuffle between the activists of BJP Yuva Morcha and the Police as the former tried to gherao the official residence of the BMC Mayor in the evening.

Reports said the Morcha activists, as per the announcement by the party’s state general secretary earlier in the day, were on the way to gherao the official residence of the Mayor when they were obstructed by the police at Raj Mahal square in the evening. As a result, the activists had a scuffle with the police.

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