Odisha BJP leader withdraws money on forged signature of BDO; held

Bhubaneswar: A BJP leader from Khurda district of Odisha was arrested on charges of withdrawing Rs 15 lakh from a bank on forged signature of Tangi Block Development Officer (BDO) recently.

The accused has been identified as Kishore Behera, son of Satrughana Behera, of Nuasahi under Tangi police limits in Khurda district. Behera has been produced in a local court today, said a police officer.

According to police, Behera, who is also a private contractor, had won the tenders to construct two health centres at Badapari and Laxmidharpur villages under Tangi block some days ago.

Behera had deposited Rs 15 lakh in fovour of Tangi BDO Aishwariya Samantaray at Soron branch of Indian Bank in accordance with the guidelines of the tendering process.

Behera, later, withdrew the money from the bank by forging the signature of Tangi BDO, who came to know about the incident a few days ago.

The BDO lodged an FIR in this regard with Tangi police on May 20. In the FIR, it was alleged that the accused had submitted a fake letter containing the forged signature of Tangi BDO to the Branch Manager of Indian Bank, Soron, to withdraw the money.

“How could the Branch Manager receive the letter from a private person like Behera? Why the Branch Manager did not check the genuineness of the letter and contact Tangi block office before releasing the amount to Behera?” said the BDO in the FIR.

The BDO urged the police to conduct a probe and initiate stern action against the people involved in the fraud.

The police have registered a case in this regard under Sections 420, 465 and 471 of the IPC.

Notably, accused Kishore Behera’s wife Jotshna Behera has been elected as the chairperson of Chilika Panchayat Samiti in Khurda district. The accused is stated to have close proximity with some influential BJP leaders in Odisha.

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