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Odisha: Political Temperature Rises With Ashirbad Behera's Arrest

19 September 2019

Debashish Maharana

Bhubaneswar: Political temperature in Odisha has risen with the arrest of former Odisha Cricket Association secretary Ashirbad Behera. The CBI arrested Behera in connection with the multi-crore Artha Tatwa scam on Thursday.

The leaders of political parties had a varied opinion on Behera's arrest. While the Congress termed it as politically motivated, BJD maintained that the CBI should conduct a free and fair probe. On the other hand, the State BJP leaders said that the agency was just doing its duty and there was no bias in the investigation.

Congress veteran and Jatni MLA, Suresh Routray said that the CBI intends to imapct the election of OCA in which Behera's son is a contender. "The OCA elections are due on 27th of this month. If there was proof against Behera, what made the CBI wait for so long. I am of the opinion that this arrest is to checkmate his son's candidature in the upcoming OCA elections."

BJP leader Prithwiraj Harichandan said that the CBI is an autonomous body and has maintained utmost professionalism in the chit fund scam investigation so far. "We should not derive political motives from the actions of the agency. CBI is a professional and premier investigation agency and we should let it do its job."

BJD Leader and Satyabadi MLA Uma Samantray said, "Whoever is involved in this scam must not be spared. The CBI should conduct a free and fair probe."

Suresh Routray, Congress MLA

Prithviraj Harichandan, Spokesperson, BJP, Odisha

Umakanta Samantaray, BJD MLA