Manas Swain murder: Sarmistha Rout breaks down during crime scene recreation

Bhubaneswar: Sarmistha Rout, the prime accused in the cameraman Manas Swain murder case, today reportedly broke down during crime scene recreation by the Odisha Crime Branch, which is probing into the matter, at an old age home here.

The investigators had taken Sarmistha to ‘Dayal Ashram’ at Sundarpada in the capital city, the old age home which was run by her. Manas was allegedly thrashed to death at the old age home.

During the crime scene recreation, Sarmistha demonstrated as to how Manas was murdered and the weapons of offence were disposed, reports said.

Earlier in the day, she was taken to Palaspur in Chandbali, where Manas had gone to shoot a wedding function. Sarmistha showed the Crime Branch officials as to how the plan of kidnapping Manas was hatched.

She was eventually taken near Badhipatna hills in Rajsunakhala area of Nayagarh district, where the body of Manas was exhumed by police.

Sarmistha and her associate Jhuna were arrested by a joint team of Bhadrak Police and Crime Branch on March 28 from Nalanga area of Bhadrak district.

A sensational twist came to the case when police on March 21 arrested former Information & Public Relation (I&PR) Director (Technical) Niranjan Sethi over his alleged involvement in the abduction and killing of Manas. He was an Odisha Information Service (OIS) officer and retired in February.

Police have so far arrested eight persons– Sarmistha Rout, her associate Jhuna Bhoi, Niranjan Sethi, his associate Ranjan Nayak, Bhagyadhar Nayak, Vivek Nayak, Krushna Chandra Nayak and Sarmistha’s brother Parameswar Rout– in this case.

As per police, Manas had possessed a memory card containing videos and photos which could have landed Sarmistha in trouble, for which she was trying to get the memory card.

Manas Swain, a resident of Godipokhari village in Ranpur area of Nayagarh district, was working as a cameraman for a Bhubaneswar-based web portal ‘Sampoorna’ run by Sarmistha Rout.

Manas was allegedly kidnapped when he was returning from Chandbali area in Bhadrak district on February 7. He had gone there to shoot a wedding function.

His family members had lodged a missing complaint with the Chandbali police on February 14.

During probe, police found the involvement of Bhagyadhar Nayak, Vivek Nayak and Krushna Chandra Nayak in abducting Manas and arrested the trio on March 12.

The abductors allegedly took Swain to ‘Dayal Ashram’ old age home at Sundarpada in Bhubaneswar. It was being run by Sarmistha.

Manas was assaulted and murdered at the old age home on the night of February 7 while the body was buried in Nayagarh district. Police had exhumed Swain’s body near Badhipatna hills in Rajsunakhala area of the district on March 12.

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