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Devbrat Patnaik

Bhubaneswar: There are always two sides of a coin. If on one face the Capital City is claimed as the smartest of the smart cities in the State, it also has an ugly side- the attacks, loots, murders, theft taking place every now and then. Bhubaneswar has witnessed numerous attacks on senior residents in recent past who have no clue on why they are being targeted.

A case in point is the Sunday night incident in Dwaraka Vihar of Kalarahanga, Bhubaneswar where a group of 7 to 8 armed miscreants allegedly barged into the house of Jatikanti Behera, Union leader of Paradip Dock & Construction and attacked his family with rods and knives.

Reportedly, the miscreants first attacked Behera and when his wife resisted, they tied her hands and legs and pushed her aside to one corner of the house. Even their son was not spared. However, the miscreants fled the spot after sometime without looting any valuables from them.

"They thrashed me severely. There was a small boy in the group who was directed to hack me with a sharp weapon. Two other miscreants strangulated me with a bed sheet. While I was trying to save myself, my wife pleaded them to leave me," narrated Jatikanti, who has sustained serious injuries on his head and face.

"The first thing is the capital city is not safe anymore. Even senior citizens are unsafe. Today we were attacked, tomorrow it could be anyone of you," his wife stated.

Also injured in the attack, Jatikanti's son Subasish Behera said, "There was a long scuffle and they fled the scene after sometime. Only a police investigation will reveal the actual motive of such a murderous attack."

While initially it was suspected that the attack could be a fallout of a business rivalry or past enmity, police say there is involvement of criminals from Bangladesh. A police investigation is currently underway.

Twin City Police Commissioner Satyajit Mohanty said, "Recently, a few criminals from across the border, most of them belonging to Bangladesh were arrested. Preliminary investigation and modus operandi suggest such criminals have a hand in this particular incident. They mostly target residents and locations close to railway stations so that their escape gets easier."

Earlier this year in February, armed miscreants allegedly looted gold jewelries and other valuables from the house of one Suranjita Rana in Kanan Vihar and looted around 250 grams of gold jewellery and other valuable items from the house after tying up the inhabitants. Last year in August, a retired army officer Naresh Panda was attacked in a similar manner.

The major upset now is are senior citizens really safe? Jatikanti's wife aptly said "Today it was me, tomorrow it could be you."

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