Staff Reporter

Alleged role in Biranchi Das murder the trigger

He has been asked to report to GAD Chagala subjected to lie detector test

BHUBANESWAR: Controversial senior bureaucrat Priyabrata Patnaik was on Tuesday asked to relinquish his official duties in the wake of charges of his alleged involvement in Biranchi Das murder and “acquaintance” with gangster Raja Acharya, the prime suspect in the case.

According the Chief Minister’s Office, Mr. PriyabrataPatnaik, who was holding the post of principal secretary to the Commerce and Transport Department, was transferred as “officer without duty” and asked to report to the General Administration Department (GAD).

Energy Secretary Suresh Mohapatra had been given additional charge of Commerce and Transport Department.

Special Secretary in Transport Department Guru Ray had been given charge of Chairman-cum-Managing Director of the Orissa State Road Transport Corporation, which was also held by Mr. Patnaik.

The senior IAS officer was discharging important duty as nodal officer for the controversial steel project proposed by South Korean Steel giant POSCO near Paradip in Jagatsinghpur district.

On Monday, the senior bureaucrat was questioned for 90 minutes at the office of Commissioner of Police Binoy Behera after Chagala, a co-accused in the murder case, confessed that Mr. Patnaik knew about the murder case and met the gangster.

Following the questioning session, Mr. Behera told mediapersons that the senior IAS officer had met Acharya in the Judo Association Hall on March 16 last and sought help of Biranchi Das to persuade the gangster not to trouble a music video actor.

Search intensified

The city police on Tuesday conducted lie detector test on Chagala, who had been giving different statements initially at the time of surrender in Bhopal and during interrogation by the police.

The Commissioner of Police had already made it clear that if required the co-accused would be subjected to narco analysis or brain mapping.

Meanwhile, the police intensified their search for elusive Raja Acharya in different districts following its failed attempt to nab the gangster in Kendrapara on Monday.

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