Disburse Rs 6cr among poor within 15 days

Bhubaneswar: The alleged Rs 6 crore ransom issue for the safe release of MLA Jhina Hikaka and then Malkangiri collector R Vineel Krishna took a dramatic turn on Sunday with the CPI (Maoist) Malkangiri Divisional Committee warning Maoist sympathiser Dandapani Mohanty to disburse the said amount among the poor within 15 days.

“We have not taken any ransom for the release of Hikaka and Krishna. If Dandapani Mohanty is claiming any such deal between government and Maoists then he must disburse the amount among the poor within 15 days which he has grasped,” a press statement of the Committee said.

“He (Mohanty) must withdraw his statement else action will be taken against him in praja court (people’s court),” the release added.

The extremist group’s letter is presumptively prompted by Mohanty’s recent disclosure to the media that Rs four crore had been paid for the release of Krishna in 2011 while Rs two crore was paid to free legislator Hikaka from the captivity of Maoists earlier this year.

On the other hand, Mohanty said, “I have told media that I’ll present my statement before the inquiry panel if constituted to probe the matter."

"I don’t have to tell anything on the Committee’s letter. I have to check it first,” the septuagenarian said suspecting authenticity of the letter.

Earlier on December 16, Opposition Congress sought a clarification from the ruling Biju Janata Dal (BJD) on the issue for which it demanded a probe by the National Investigative Agency (NIA). “Since the matter is a very serious allegation it should be handed over to the NIA for investigation” Leader of Oppostion Bhupinder Singh and Congress chief whip in Assembly Prasad Harichandan said.