BJP MLA surrenders in court, sent to jail

Phulbani: BJP MLA Manoj Kumar Pradhan, a convict in two Kandhamal riot cases, on Wednesday surrendered before a local court here after his bail by the High Court was challenged in the Supreme Court.

Pradhan, the MLA of G Udaygiri assembly constituency in Kandhamal district was one of the two persons who was convicted and sent to jail by the Fast Track Court-I judge S K Das on June 29, 2010 in the murder of Bikram Nayak of Tiangia village under Raikia police station area on August 25, 2008.

But Pradhan was granted bail by the Orissa High Court on July 9, 2010.

Nayak`s widow Kanakrekha moved the Supreme Court challenging the Orissa High Court`s order granting bail to Pradhan.

The Apex Court had on January 25, 2011, asked the Orissa HC to review its earlier order granting bail to Pradhan, a convict in the killing of Nayak.

While the HC was yet to take any stand on the bail granted to the MLA in view of the SC`s suggestions, Pradhan surrendered before the Fast Track Court-I judge S K Das today, the government pleader Sib Prasad Tripathy said.

The BJP MLA was also convicted in the murder of another person identified as Parikhita Digal that took place during the riot.

A total of 14 riot related cases were registered against Pradhan`s name of which he had been acquitted in 11 cases.

After his surrender, Pradhan was sent to the district prison here.