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Friday,05-March-2021

Crime

Prime accused in 1999 Odisha gang rape case held

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Crime

The prime accused in the sensational 1999 gang rape case involving the estranged wife of an IFS officer has been arrested from Maharashtra, police said on Monday.

The incident had led to the resignation of the then Odisha Chief Minister Janaki Ballabh Patnaik in 1999 after huge outrage in the state.

Biban alias Bibekanand Biswal, who was absconding for the last 22 years, was arrested from Aamby Vally in Lonavala, informed Police Commissioner Sudhansu Sarangi.

The Police Commissioner said that Biban had hidden in Aamby Vally in Pune by changing his name to Jalandhar Swain and was working there as a plumber.

“During the investigation, we came to know that the prime accused is residing at Aamby Valley in Lonavala on Mumbai-Pune road. He was working as a plumber and had changed his name to Jalandhar Swain. He had mentioned Naranpur in Cuttack as his permanent address. Investigation revealed that there is no Jalandhar Swain in Naranpur,” said Sarangi.

He had a permanent job, Aadhaar card and bank account there. He was in contact with his family members, said the Police Commissioner.

He said an operation ‘Silent Viper’ was launched three months ago to nab the accused.

The accused will be handed over to the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), which is investigating the 1999 case.

Biban along with his two associates had allegedly gang-raped the victim inside her car on the Bhubaneswar-Barang road on January 9, 1999 while she was travelling to Bhubaneswar along with her friend.

She was gang-raped by three men, Pradip Sahoo, Dhirendra Mohanty and Biban Biswal in front of her friend.

On January 26 that year, Pradip and Dhirendra were arrested following a complaint by the victim.

The Khordha District and Sessions Judge Court in 2002 had sentenced the duo to life imprisonment in the case.

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Crime

Maharashtra police bust illegal arms factory of Maoists in Gadchiroli

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Maharashtra-police

In a significant achievement, the commandos of Gadchiroli Police bust an illegal arms manufacturing factory deep in the forests of Aheri, Home Minister Anil Deshmukh said on Friday.

A 70-strong force of commandoes battled Maoists’ gunfire as they charged into “the remote and virtually inaccessible core areas” of the rebels for over 48 hours before notching the stunning success, Deshmukh said.

The operation was carried out under the police’s Tactical Counter Offensive Campaign to weed out the strongholds of the rebels in this Maoist-infested district.

“One commando has received bullet injury on his leg and has been rushed to the headquarters in a helicopter for treatment. His condition is stable,” Deshmukh said.

The minister congratulated the Gadchiroli Police for their courage and dedication that resulted in this big victory over the Maoists.

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Crime

Maharashtra panel moots ’10-point’ agenda to end farmers’ suicides

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Farmer

A farm-panel on Friday submitted a ’10-point programme’ intended to arrest the agrarian crises in Maharashtra and end the saga of farmers’ suicides in the state, a top official said here.

The Vasantrao Naik Shet Swavlamban Mission (VNSSM) President Kishore Tiwari, accorded a Minister of State status, formally submitted the 10-point charter to Chief Secretary Sitaram Kunte.

On his part, Kunte directed the Agriculture Department to initiate the necessary measures in the matter on priority, Tiwari told IANS after the meeting.

The parched Vidarbha, Marathwada and Khandesh regions of the state have been under the grip of a severe agro-crisis since the past nearly 25 years, forcing thousands of woeful farmers to end their lives and the trend continues even now.

“Despite measures, relief packages or loan-waivers worth over Rs five-lakh crore given by successive governments, the core issues remain untouched and need to be addressed on top priority to bring succour to the peasantry,” Tiwari told Kunte.

The 10-point programme includes: state to address input cost reduction and output cost intervention; shifting to crop pattern as per demand of the local and global market; to stop frequent failure of the credit-cycle in new farm credit policy; secondary livelihood management income activity; core issues of irrigation, water conservation, soil health revival; proper risk management with effective crop insurance and climate change issue.

Besides, Tiwari called for proper incentive for agroforestry, promotion of pulses and oilseed crops; professional quality health and education rural infrastructure; food security; and improvement in the quality of local governance.

The VNSSM chief contended that the rural agrarian distress also remained unresolved owing to a hostile administration, non-cooperation of the bankers, ill-intended interventions and complex issues pertaining to social-engineering, besides the economic crises in the country, especially in the past seven years.

Tiwari assured Kunte that the VNSSM has a detailed ready plan to tackle all these issues which can eliminate ‘directionless relief or loan waivers packages’ and end the cycle of farmers suicides on a permanent basis.

In the past 25 years or so, Tiwari said an estimated 35,000-plus farmers, including several women, have resorted to the extreme step of suicide as they could not bear the burden of pending loans, leaving behind a large number of destitute widows and orphans across the state.

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Crime

22-year-old woman hangs herself, two children

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Noose

A 22-year-old woman committed suicide by hanging herself along with her two children following an argument with her husband in Subhash Place area of Delhi, the police said.

According to the police, on Thursday the woman had sought permission for going to her native place Madhubani in Bihar for the Mundan ceremony of their child. But this turned into an argument. Thereafter, the husband left for work. After he left the woman hanged herself along with the two children.

“The husband of the woman was on his job. After coming back from work he saw them hanging from the window. The door of the room was closed from inside and he broke it open with the help of neighbours,” said Usha Rangnani, DCP North West.

They were married about five years ago, Rangnani said, adding that the bodies have been sent to a hospital for postmortem.

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