Sharmili Mallick

Balasore: The body of a minor girl, who had been reported missing since Friday, was found near a pond at Sundarkoili village under Baliapal police limits in the district on Monday morning.

A complaint about the missing of the seven-year-old girl Bishnupriya alias Neuli was lodged by her family members at Baliapal Police Station yesterday evening.

Based on the complaint, police have detained a youth suspecting his involvement in the case and interrogating him, said reports.

Police have also seized the body of Bishnupriya and it will be sent for post-mortem to ascertain the exact cause of her death.

Bishnupriya, daughter of one Balaram Patra, was living and studying at her uncle's house in Sundarkoili. As per the complaint, she was playing with her friends at around 9 AM last Friday and went untraceable from there.

Though the family members of Bishnupriya launched a frantic search to find her whereabouts, she could not be traced anywhere. Even the sarpanch of the village tried to search her by making announcement in mike but in vain.

Following the complaint, a team of police officials had gone to Sundarkoili village yesterday and recorded the statement of Bishnupriya's family members and friends.

Earlier on Friday, a three-year-old girl 'Pihu' became untraceable while she was playing near her house at Dadhipatna village under Ranpur block in Nayagarh district.

Another two-year-old girl has been missing from Madhusudanpur village under Binjharpur police station in Jajpur district since last four months. Shubhalakhmi (Pihu) went missing while playing in the village in early August. Even as five months have elapsed, police have not been able to trace her.

Prior to that, a five-year-old girl Pari had also gone missing in similar fashion while she was playing in front her house at Jadupur village of Nayagarh district in July this year. Later, Pari’s skeletal remains were found from the backyard of her house. The incident has triggered political battle in the State after Pari’s parents attempted suicide in front of the State Assembly last month. They have been blaming Minister Arun Sahoo of shielding the prime suspect in the case identified as Babuli Nayak.

(Edited By Rashmi Ranjan Mohanty)