Loknath Behera, a senior IPS officer of the Kerala cadre, who is on deputation with the recently-set up National Investigation Agency (NIA), was awarded the President’s Medal for Distinguished Service on the occasion of this year’s Independence Day. He is the first and only officer from the NIA to have been named in the list of Independence Day medals.
Belonging to the 1985 IPS batch, Mr. Behera was posted as Officer on Special Duty (OSD) with the NIA since its inception earlier this year. The specialised federal agency was created with the approval of Parliament to probe terror-related crimes and offences having a bearing on national security.
Mr. Behera is also discharging the duties as Inspector-General (Operations) of NIA.
He has had a rather long and distinguished innings with the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) as SP and then DIG. He cracked several cases in the CBI, including high profile ones such as the Graham Staines murder case in Orissa in 1999 and the sensational murder of young Hindi poetess Madhumita Shukla in Lucknow. He was also supervising investigations in the Ayodhya case relating to the demolition of the Babri Masjid in 1992.