VHP demands immediate arrest of Saraswati killer

Phulbani: Peeved over alleged delay in the arrest of culprits in the killing of Swami Laxmananda Saraswati, VHP leaders on Friday cautioned that people might break law unless the government took expeditious steps.
The speakers at the meeting, held here to mark the 5th death anniversary of Saraswati, alleged that the investigation had become a farce and scores of disciples and followers of the slain VHP leader had been denied justice.
Laxmanananda, along with his four associates including a woman, was murdered by unknown gunmen on August 23, 2008 at his ashram at Jalaspeta in Kandhamal district triggering riot in which 44 persons were killed and 4956 houses torched.
Elaborate police arrangement was made in the district with deployment of 25 platoons (about 750 personnel) in communally sensitive places and 10 platoons here to prevent untoward incident.
The state government had set-up two first-track courts for early trial of riot cases and constituted a judicial commission to probe the reasons behind the ethno-communal violence in the aftermath of Saraswati's killing.
The state crime branch of police, which was investigating into the death of Laxmananda, had arrested 10 persons including Maoist leader Azad and chargesheeted 14 persons.
Meanwhile, senior BJP leader Ashok Sahu along with his supporters, launched an indefinite hunger strike in front of the collectorate demanding arrest of the culprits and conspirators of Saraswati killers.