Sec 144 Clamped Outside Vedanta Aluminium After Man Arrested For Protesting Dies In Hospital

Bhawanipatna: An undertrial prisoner (UTP) lodged at Bhawanipatna Jail who was arrested along with 28 other persons for staging dharna in front of Vedanta Aluminium, Lanjigarh unit in Kalahandi district demanding jobs for locals on March 18, died while undergoing treatment at Burla VIMSAR Friday late night.

The UTP identified as Pattnaik Harijan was suffering from some kidney-related ailments and was initially admitted to Bhawanipatna Hospital. Though he was shifted to VIMSAR after his health condition deteriorated, he died while undergoing treatment at the hospital last night.

Apprehending any unrest in front of the plant following Patnaik’s death, the district administration has clamped prohibitory orders under section 144 of CrPC from the periphery of the plant up to two kilometres.

Lanjigarh police has also kept Patnaik’s body under its custody and is yet to hand over it to the family of the deceased, said reports.

Sources said, the authorities of the plant held talks with the family members of the deceased. During the meeting, Patnaik’s family members demanded Rs 5 lakh as compensation for his five daughters and a job for his wife at the plant.

Earlier on March 18, two persons including an Odisha Industrial Security Force (OISF) personnel were killed while 30 others injured after a violent clash broke out between the security personnel deployed at the plant and labourers along with some locals staging demonstration over several demands including jobs for locals at the plant.

As many as 300 persons were detained by the police and around 29 persons including Patnaik were later arrested based on the CCTV footages installed inside and outside of the main gate of the plant. Among the arrested 29 persons, 11 were released after getting bail.