Staff Reporter

VHP, Bajrang Dal activists attack four villages

BHUBANESWAR: Even as pressure on Naveen Patnaik government was mounting in the wake of raging communal violence in Kandhamal district, State unit of the Congress on Saturday made its voice shriller demanding impartial probe by CBI into nun-rape case and attacks on Christian community.

Addressing a press conference here on Saturday, Orissa Pradesh Congress Committee (OPCC) president Jayadev Jena said insouciant approach shown by the State government towards probe into allegation of gang rape of a nun and subsequent attempt to hush up matter appeared to be criminal acts.

The State government had already handed over the nun-rape probe to crime branch and an officer of the rank of Inspector General of Police was monitoring the investigation.

Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik, who is in-charge of Home Department, should immediately tender resignation owning the responsibility for the communal violence, which became a shame in national as well as international level, Mr. Jena demanded.

The violence also spread to Boudh district and State government seemed to be not in a mood to douse the violence because as many as eight senior police officials who were approaching their retirement from the service were deputed in the district, he pointed out.

Activists of Viswa Hindu Parishad and Bajrang Dal had attacked four villages in Kantamal area of Boudh district and set 250 houses on fire, Mr. Jena alleged adding that most of the residents fled from their village.

Alleging that open threats were being delivered to people taking shelters in different relief camps, OPCC President said people of Christian community were being asked to get tonsured and return to Hindu faith, if they wished to get back to their villages.

ONS demand

He appealed the Union government to take appropriate steps if the communal violence worsened further.

Meanwhile, Orissa Nari Samaj (ONS), a federation of tribal women’s organisation in 54 blocks, also demanded CBI inquiry into nun-rape case saying it was shocking to hear that police remained spectator. The non-acceptance of the complaint letter by the Tikabali police station showed that the whole episode a State- sponsored terrorism against minority, tribal and dalit, ONS said in a statement. Leaders of ONS in their resolution condemned the gang rape of nun while appreciating the courage of this nun to come out in public daring consequences she might have to encounter.