Pipili panel summons MLA, Home Secretary and DGP

Cuttack: Justice P K Mohanty Commission which is probing the Pipili rape and murder case on Monday decided to summon former minister and Pipili MLA Pradeep Maharathy, asking him to file an affidavit before it.

Along with the senior BJD leader, the Commission on the day also issued notices to the Home Secretary and Director General of Police to file their affidavits before it and fixed October 31 for adjudicating.

Allowing a petition of advocate Nishikant Mishra, who is also a witness before the panel, Justice Mohanty issued the notices under Section 8 of the Commission of Inquiry Act.

Mishra in his petition had sought to summon Maharathy saying if the leader had to resign as a cabinet minister in the wake of Pipili gang rape incident, it was imperative on his part to cooperate with the Commission to find the truth.

Mishra had also mentioned that when the news of the rape of a 19-year-old dalit girl came to light, the then inspector of Pipili police station was terminated from service and an IPS officer was removed as district SP.

“When these two vital developments took place in the police department in the wake of the incident, it was necessary for the state Home Secretary and DGP to stand as witnesses before the Commission, set up by state government to find the truth,” Mishra argued orally before the Commission.

Despite opposition from the state government’s counsel, the Commission allowed the petition of Mishra and directed its secretary to issue notices to the senior ruling party leader and to the two top IAS and IPS officers asking them to file their affidavits before the next date of hearing.

The Commission also expressed its anguish when the state government once again failed to file the counter affidavits in response to an earlier petition of Mishra.

The HC advocate and a native of Pipili in an earlier petition had alleged that the Commissionerate police had forcibly taken away the body of the rape victim while it was being taken for cremation at Puri Swargadwar in June this year.