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Vigilance raids 15 places in connection with graft charges against Odisha MLA

Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik and Gopalpur MLA Pradeep Panigrahi (centre). File   | Photo Credit: The Hindu

The vigilance wing of the Odisha Police on Sunday said it has conducted search operations at 15 places in connection with its probe into disproportionate asset case against Gopalpur MLA Pradeep Panigrahy.

The Legislator was allegedly found in possession of assets worth ₹5.05 crore disproportionate to his known sources of income, the anti-corruption branch of the State police said in a statement.

A complaint was filed before the Lokayukta, Odisha in December last year after completion of a secret verification on the allegation of possession of disproportionate assets by the MLA, it said.

"The Lokayukta directed the Odisha Vigilance to conduct an inquiry against Panigrahy. The vigilance sleuths raided 15 premises of Panigrahy, his relatives and associates," the statement said.

He had allegedly amassed disproportionate assets to the tune of ₹5.05 crore between May 2009 and November 2020 as a public servant, it said.

Panigrahy, once a close aide of Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik, was arrested by the vigilance wing in a case of cheating people with fake promises of jobs.

The 56-year-old legislator was in jail for about seven months and released on bail in June this year.

Panigrahy was expelled from the ruling BJD on charge of "anti-people" activities in November last year.

The Gopalpur MLA had denied the charges of cheating job seekers and alleged that his relatives and supporters were being harassed by the police after his expulsion from the party.

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Printable version | Dec 6, 2021 6:38:47 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/vigilance-raids-15-places-in-connection-with-graft-charges-against-odisha-mla/article37036610.ece

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