Odisha politicians, bureaucrats, and businessmen nervous as police arrest woman accused on extortion

The woman and her husband are said to have amassed huge sums of money, constructed palatial building, owned costly cars and instituted a company in a short amount of time

Published - October 11, 2022 08:47 am IST - BHUBANESWAR

Arrest of a woman suspected to be involved in blackmailing using obscene photographs and videos has appeared to have made several politicians, bureaucrats and businessmen nervous in Odisha.

The woman identified as Archana Nag was picked up by police on Friday. Her bail plea has been rejected in the local court. All came to light when an unknown girl lodged a complaint in police station against well-known Odia film producer, Akshaya Parija, accusing him of sexually exploiting her.

Mr. Parija lodged another complaint police station saying the woman Archana Nag and another woman, Shradhanjali Behera, had made extortion demand of ₹3 crore from him. “They issued a threat. If I fail to give the said amount, they would cut me into pieces,” said the film producer in his complaint.

As the woman’s arrest became public, social media accounts of her and her husband revealed how powerful the couple was. The palatial building the couple constructed was nothing short of a star hotel. They spent crores of rupees for interior design.

Former speaker Surjya Narayan Patro, former Congress MLA Kailash Chandra Kulesika, a former Divisional Railway Manager Anup Kumar Satpathy were seen posing for photographs inside the palatial building. The photographs were posted on social networking site by her husband Jagabandhu Chand. Individuals such as a famous hotelier, jeweler, a senior IAS officer and son of an MLA were said to be regular visitors to the home.

Jagannath Saraka, Minister of ST, SC, Development, Minorities and Backward Class Welfare and Law, who had a photograph with woman’s husband, denied knowing him.  

Bhubaneswar Deputy Commissioner of Police Prateek Singh said Nag was booked under sections 387, 420 and 506 of IPC and some sections of IT Act on the basis of the FIR lodged by the Behera (another woman), who accused the woman of exploiting her using intimate videos.

According to police, Nag, who hails from Kalahandi district, used to develop a friendship with the victims, filmed them with men and subsequently blackmailed them using the videos. She allegedly used to send these girls to influential persons.

Mr. Singh said a pen drive, laptop and bank passbooks were seized from her house and bank details and transactions were looked into. The couple was also in possession of Macaw, exotic dogs and stallion. The woman and her husband are said to have amassed huge sums of money, constructed palatial building, owned costly cars and instituted a company in a short amount of time.

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