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Odishatv Bureau

Angul: A ward member’s husband in Badakera panchayat here was forced to go around the village beating a gong as a punishment for not casting vote in favour of the naib sarpanch candidate.

During a village meeting at Ragudiapada, ward member Mallika Sahu’s husband Dusmanta Sahu was also asked to pay Rs 50,000 if he did not want to beat gong across the panchayat.

Denouncing the village meeting’s decision, another ward member Prabina Mohanty said, “Such practices were prevalent during the British rule. However, the village secretary and other elders are practising such inhuman acts to take revenge for supporting Bidyadhara Prusty during the naib sarpanch election.”

Naib sarpanch Bidyadhara stated, “After the rural election, there were some poll-related issues which were sorted out later. However, yesterday during a meeting the villagers asked him either to pay fine or beat gong as punishment. We want strict action against the persons involved, so that such instances do not recur.”

Regarding the incident Nirmala Gochhayat, Bantala PS IIC, said, “We have asked the ward member’s husband to stay home and not to follow any punishment given by the village elders.”

She further stated, “The issue cropped up when Dusmanta Sahu misbehaved in a village meeting following which the local peace committee fined him,” adding that police will begin a probe if any complaint is lodged.

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