Itishree murder trial: 11 more witnesses record statement in Odisha court

Reported by Ranjan Rath
Rayagada, December 18:

The second phase of recording of statements in the trial of the high profile murder case of Itishree Pradhan, a teacher in the Tikri primary school in Rayagada district of Odisha, concluded on Thursday.

Itishree Pradhan
Itishree Pradhan

Dismissed ASI of Tikiri police station Muralidhar Pradhan, Kashipur Block Development Officer (BDO) Alok Pradhan and school managing committee chairman Bipracharan Pujari recorded their statements before the court today, the fourth and last day of this round of recording of statements .

The district and sessions court recorded the statements of 11 witnesses during the four-day long proceedings.

The witnessess who recorded their statemens on the first day were Prashant Kumar Mohapatra, brother-in-law of accused Netrananda Dandsena, wife of Tikiri school head master Harapriya Satpathy, and doctor’s husband Sailendra Kumar Singh.

The court wanted to know about the conversation between Itishree and Harapriya, who accompanied the badly burnt lady teacher from Tikiri to Visakhapatnam.

In her statement, Harapriya said an unidentified assailant threatened her of dire consequences if she did not withdraw the case against Dandsena. On her refusal, the man doused her in kerosene before setting her on fire, she said.

On the second day, sub-inspector of police Durgeshwari Pradhan, Itishree’s brother Bikram Pradhan and scientific team member Rabindra Kumar Patra deposed before the cort.

The then BJD MP Jairam Pangi called up Itishree thrice and threatened her to withdraw the case against Dandsena, Bikram told the court quoting from the conversation he had with Itishree at Vishakhapatnam.

While being rushed to hospital, Itishree had said that an unidentified person had set her ablaze, said Durgeswari, the lady police officer who accompanied the lady teacher to the hospital.

Itishree’s sister Birajini Pradhan and Tikiri school teacher Bidhata Mali recorded their statements before the court on the third day. However, Dr P Raju, who conducted the autopsy on Itishree at Visakhapatna did not appear before the court to record his statement.

So far, a total of 19 witnesses have recorded their statements in the two phases. The court has posted the third phase of recording of statements to January 27, 2015. During the three day proceeding, nine witnesses will record their statements, Crime Branch counsel Rajendra Prasad Sahu told OST.

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