BJP blames BJD for murder of party leader in Odisha

Bhubaneswar: A day after a Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader was murdered in Odisha’s Cuttack district, the party on Sunday alleged that the ruling Biju Janata Dal (BJD) has started eliminating rivals similar to what the Trinamool Congress in neighbouring West Bengal.

BJP leader Kulamani Baral and his associate Dibya Singh Baral were murdered in Salepur area of Cuttack district.

While Kulamani died at Mahanga hospital on Saturday night, his associate succumbed to injuries at SCB Medical College Hospital on Sunday morning.

Kulamani Baral was in-charge of Salepur mandal of BJP and former chairman of Mahanga panchayat Samiti.

“Kulamani Baral had raised his voice against irregularities in Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana (PMAY) in Mahanga assembly constituency. Outraged by this, the ruling party workers killed Baral,” alleged state BJP general secretary Golak Mohapatra.

He blamed Law Minister Pratap Jena, who represents Mahanga constituency, for the political killing.

He said the opposition leaders are being killed in Odisha at the behest of the ruling party leaders for raising their voices against corruption, like the Trinamool Congress in West Bengal has resorted to political killing.

Union Minister Dharmendra Pradhan condemned the murder of Baral and his associate and urged the administration to take stern action against the culprits.

BJP has decided to hold a demonstration in all blocks of Cuttack district from Monday demanding immediate arrest of culprits, informed BJP Cuttack district unit president Prakash Behera.

Ramakant Baral, son of Kulamani, has lodged an FIR against 12 persons at Mahanga police station.

“I have lodged a complaint naming 12 persons for killing my father over political rivalry. The incident is the fallout of the exposure of irregularities in the PMAY in the area,” said Ramakant.

Odisha Pradesh Congress Committee (PCC) president Niranjan Pattnaik also condemned the killing.

“His death shows that political killings have begun in the state. Police need to take stringent action against the accused,” he said.

However, Law Minister Pratap Jena expressed grief over the incident and said that he would ensure that those who killed the BJP leader get punished.

“I condemn the incident. It was an unfortunate incident. We do not believe in violence. There is no place for violence in politics. I will personally see that strong action is taken against the culprits,” he said.

(IANS)

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