Congress gheraoes IG office protesting arrest of ex-MLA

Berhampur: Hundreds of Congress activists today gheraoed the office of the Inspector General of police (IGP), southern range, demanding withdrawal of ‘false’ cases against former MLA Ramesh Jena, who is currently on a five-day police remand.

A group of party members led by Congress chief whip in Assembly Tara Prasad Bahinipati and senior leader Lalatendu Bidyadhar Mohapatra took out a procession from the party office here, which culminated at the IG office.

A team of representatives submitted a memorandum addressed to the Governor demanding his intervention in the case to the IG.

Congress alleged that police waylaid some party activists coming to join the protest rally.

“Around 20,000 to 30,000 people are gathered here to protest against his arrest. It clearly shows the popularity of Ramesh Jena”, Bahinipati said.

The party also said that it will reach out to people with the message of ‘false cases’ slapped against Jena.

“Police are acting as per the direction of State government. Ramesh Jena has been trapped in false cases. We are protesting against it. We will take the matter to the people in the near future,” PCC general secretary Bikram Panda said.

Meanwhile, police have unearthed Ramesh Jena’ links with a chit fund firm. Berhampur SP Sarthak Sarangi said Jena has links to the scam-tainted Green India Chit fund company.

Moreover, a luxury vehicle belonging to Jena bearing Haryana state registration number has also been seized, informed Sarangi.

According to police, Jena has 12 cases pending in his name at various police stations in Ganjam police district and 13 cases in Berhampur police district.

Police have established his involvement in murder, thrashing and maiming people, tender fixing, forcible possession and purchase of private land by threatening people, gutkha trade, country liquor trade and transport business.

A team of Berhampur Police had arrested Jena along with his three associates from Bhubaneswar on March 6 in connection with the February 29 bomb explosion in the house of a local corporator.

On Thursday, police had raided Jena’s house at Gambhariguda village under Patapur police station limits in Ganjam district and seized two revolvers and some incriminating documents.