Police-lawyer standoff: ‘Assaulted’ advocate fails to depose before Crime Branch

Cuttack: Advocate Debi Prasad Patnaik, whose alleged assault by police led to the ongoing cease-work protest by High Court lawyers, failed to depose before the Crime Branch of Odisha Police today.

Citing health concerns, Patnaik did not appear before the investigating agency and has sought four weeks’ time, informed sources.

Earlier, a notice was issued to Patnaik asking him to depose before the Crime Branch after the case was handed over to IG Arun Bothra on September 4 following a directive from the Supreme Court.

On the other hand, the Crime Branch has been asked to submit a status report of the investigation to the Orissa High Court on October 10.

Bothra refused to comment citing the matter is sub-judice.

On August 28, Pattnaik was allegedly beaten up by a few police personnel at Shastrinagar in Nuabazar of Cutack. Following the assault, lawyers of the Orissa High Court have been observing cease-work strike since then demanding arrest of the accused.

Cuttack Deputy Commissioner of Police, Akhileshvar Singh has already suspended three police personnel including two constables- BK Samal and UK Bhuyan and Havildar PK Behera for ‘police excess.’

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