Reported by Ranjan Rath
Rayagada, Feb 11:
The Special Investigation Team (SIT) of the CBI, which is yet to arrive in Odisha’s Rayagada district to start the probe into the death of Itishree Pradhan, a lady teacher of Tikiri Upper Primary School, on November 1, 2013, has collected all relevant files relating to the case from the Crime Branch headquarters.
This was informed by Crime Branch counsel Rajendra Sahu here today.
Meanwhile, the fourth-phase deposition of witnesses to the case ended at the District and Sessions Judge Court here today.
During the deposition, the court recorded the statement of Crime Branch DSP Bijay Kumar Mallick, Crime Branch Inspector RN Mohanty, technician of State Forensic Laboratory Harekrushna Mahakud, Tikiri Cluster Resource Centre Coordinator (CRCC) Durya Majhi and Itishree’s cousin Prasant Dalei.
The fifth phase deposition would be held on March 10 and 11, Sahu said, adding a total of 33 witnesses in the case have deposed so far.
It may be mentioned that Itishree was set on fire inside her room in the school campus on the night of October 27, 2013 and succumbed to her injuries at the CARE Hospital at Vishakhapatnam in Andhra Pradesh on November 1.
While the state government had ordered a Crime Branch probe into the incident, the latter has failed to nab the prime accused more than a year after the incident.
Following a writ petition filed by Sudipta Lenka, a law student from Bengaluru, the Supreme Court directed the CBI to probe into the case on January 20 this year.
While the state government had requested the apex court to allow it to continue the investigation by the Crime Branch, the court declined to accept the plea pointing out that the mode of investigation by the state police had cast a doubt since the prime accused is yet to be nabbed more than one year after the incident.