Commission reminds State on payment of interim relief to kin of the victim

National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) has asked the Odisha government to submit a report on outcome of investigation into Itishree Pradhan murder case within eight weeks.

Itishree Pradhan, a female teacher in Rayagada district, was torched to death after the victim unsuccessfully persuaded authorities to give her protection as she was facing sexual harassment at the workplace.

“A report received from the Crime Branch of Odisha Police reveals that investigation of the case is in progress and it has not been concluded so far. Let the Director General of Police, Odisha be asked to send within eight weeks the final outcome of investigation of the CID Crime Branch,” the NHRC said in its direction.

The NHRC issued the direction while hearing a complaint by registered Akhand, managing trustee of the India Media Centre, a non-government organisation.

The murder of the lady teacher became a major political issue considering the fact that the victim had submitted her grievance at all administrative branches, including Chief Minister’s Office, but her grievance was not redressed.

Finally, she was burnt alive under mysterious circumstances. The State police is yet to reach the bottom of the case.

Women rights activists, however, have been demanding a CBI probe into the murder case alleging that since the State government is accused of inaction, attempts would be made to hush up the matter.

Besides, the NHRC reminded the State government on payment of interim relief to family members of the victim.

November 8, 2013 proceeding of NHRC says, Chief Secretary of Odisha government was asked to provide an interim relief of Rs. 5 lakh to the next of kin of the deceased.

“No proof of payment has been received from the State government,” the Commission directed.

“Chief Secretary, Odisha should be reminded to send within eight weeks the proof of payment of interim relief of Rs.5 lakh to the next of kin of the deceased,” it said.