Kendrapara: Reports on registration of false cases against protesters of the mega drinking water project on the Kharasrota river has sparked sharp resentment among the residents and in various quarters, a report said.
The residents under the banner of ‘Kharasrota Nadi Banchao Sangram Samiti’ have been opposing the construction of the mega drinking water project at Barunadiha on the river.
At the behest of the ruling party, Rajkanika police is implicating the office bearers of the outfit and other protesters in false cases which is the most agonising way of police harassment.
Police have produced the arrested persons in court by obtaining false medical report from the doctors without conducting actual medical examinations.
This was stated by Debendra Sharma, a former MLA and advisor of the outfit while addressing a press conference here, Sunday.
He demanded the Chief Minister and the DGP to intervene and take action on the unlawful activities of Rajkanika police.
Sharma alleged that this is being done to instill fear in the minds of the protesters when they were carrying out an agitation, which was by and large peaceful.
Speaking to mediapersons, he said that thousands of men and women were participating in a peaceful road blockade opposing the project August 12, when police suddenly misbehaved with the women and lathi charged them. This angered the protesters.
Subsequently, they broke the prohibitory order under Section-144 and marched towards the project site.
Meanwhile, some anti-socials owing allegiance to the ruling party ransacked the project site to heap the blame on the protesters.
Sharma alleged that the whole scene was unfolding in the presence of police but the latter deliberately acted late and did not take any action against the persons involved in the violence.
Later, police implicated the innocent protesters in false cases.
One of the cases (284/21) was registered over a complaint by the Rajkanika police IIC while another case (285/21) was registered over a complaint lodged by the consultancy agency involved in construction of the project.
The names of the accused are mostly same in both the cases while the two cases are contrasting in nature.
In the case lodged by Rajkanika police IIC, it has been alleged that the protestors destroyed the properties of the consultancy agency by violating the prohibitory order and breaking the barricade at 12.15noon.
In the second case lodged by the consultancy agency, it was alleged that the agitators accompanied by their leaders destroyed its properties at 12.05noon. Sharma alleged that the timing is different in both the cases.
He questioned if the agitators had been participating in road blockade till 12.15noon, then how they could have destroyed the properties of the consultancy agency at 12.05noon.
He alleged that the complaint had been pre-conceived and prepared in advance to implicate the agitators in false cases. He alleged that even people who were bedridden at home after having heart surgery had been arrested.
He himself and former MLA Dolagobind Nayak and other office bearers of their outfit have been implicated in false cases.
Among others, Rajkanika block Congress president Manguli Behera, former president Baburam Jena, Aul block Congress president Rabi Narayan Behera, Kendrapara district Youth Congress president Satyapriya Samal and a host of other Congress leaders attended the press conference.