Rajendra Prasad Mohapatra

Nayagarh: The investigation into the alleged abduction and murder of 5-year-old Nayagarh girl Pari gathered steam with the Special Investigation Team (SIT) subjecting prime suspect Babuli Nayak to a second round of questioning on Saturday, even as his driver Bijay Behera has now been included in the ambit of the probe.

Their questioning was underway at the time of reporting.

Meanwhile, the SIT led by IG Arun Bothra conducted searches at Nayak’s residence in Nayagarh.

According to sources, SIT is trying to trace the location of the accused and his driver (from mobile tower records) on the day Pari went missing from near her residence in July this year, before her skeletal remains were found dumped in the backyard of her house 10 days later on July 23.

A couple of days back the SIT had questioned Nayak for more than two hours on Thursday afternoon. The SIT had also held discussions with officials of the district police who were earlier involved in investigation of the case.

The team has already visited deceased’s village Jadupur and recorded the statement of her parents.

On November 24, the victim’s father Ashok Sahoo and mother Saudamini had attempted self-immolation outside the Odisha Legislative Assembly demanding justice for their daughter. Alleging police inaction in the case, the couple accused minister Arun Kumar Sahoo of shielding the prime suspect, Babuli Nayak. They claimed that Nayak is a close aide of the Nayagarh MLA.