Pyari denies link with Maoists, admits Mohanty as OJM member

Bhubaneswar: Expelled from the ruling BJD, Rajya Sabha MP Pyarimohan Mohapatra on Sunday denied any link with Maoists even though he inducted Sangram Mohanty, arrested for alleged Naxal connection, into Odisha Jan Morcha.

"I have no link with Maoists or Naxal outfits at any point of time. They (BJD government) are tyring to entangle my name with Maoists," Mohapatra told reporters.

Saying that Odisha's top Maoist leader Sabyasachi Panda's father Ramesh Panda was studying at a time when he was also a student and a co-worker in a Leftist platform, Mohapatra claimed that he was never in touch with Maoists.

Sabyasachi's father Ramesh Panda was also the Nayagarh district president of ruling BJD before his death, he said.

Mohapatra's name was linked with Maoists after the arrest of Sangram Mohanty, son of Maoist mediator Dandapani Mohanty, in Gajapati district on December 5. Sangram was arrested along with Kailash Mandal and police recovered two revolvers, ammunition and Maoist materials during a routine checking.

"Sanrgam joined OJM in the presence of all on November 30. He was arrested by the police on December 5. Therefore, circumstantial evidence indicated that Sangram's arrest might have been a sponsored one. However, I cannnot say for 100 per cent whether it is sponsored," Mohapatra clarified.

Sangram is the son of civil rights activist Dandapani Mohanty who played the role of mediator on behalf of maoists during the abduction of the then Malkangiri collector R Vineel Krishna in 2011 and two Italian nationals in March 2012.

Mohanty, who recently wrote a letter to the Chief Minister claiming that his son was innocent, also alleged that Sangram's arrest was an outcome of Naveen-Pyari dispute.

Indicating that he would float a new political party within three months, Mohapatra asked Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik to hand over mining scam investigation to CBI.

Mohapatra said he would move the Supreme Court tomorrow seeking its intervention into his expulsion from BJD.

"As my rights as an MP had been hit due to an announcement by one person (Naveen), I will request the apex court to give direction to BJD to issue me expulsion notice," he said.

He alleged that though Naveen Patnaik announced his suspension and expulsion from BJD, neither he nor the Rajya Sabha secretariat had got any official communication.

"While Rajya Sabha considers me as a BJD MP, the party did not treat me as their member. As a result I am unable to function or participate in the Upper House of Parliament," Mohapatra said.