Reported by Ranjan Rath
Angul, Oct 15:
In a major breakthrough, Angul district police today arrested a gang of highway robbers involved in as many as 12 cases, including some in which it killed the drivers and helpers of goods laden trucks across Odisha.
The accused were identified as Sangram Keshari Samantaray (28) of Puri, Susanta Pradhan (24), Maheswar Mukhi (25), Maguni Charan Sahoo (32), Narayan Behera (22), all of them from Angul, Santosh Pradhan (30) of Malkangiri, Gajendra Behera (35) of Ganjam, Duryodhan Nayak (35), Jayadev Nayak (24) of Jajpur and Sk Naser Bux (26) of Balasore.
According to reports, a special squad formed by the Superintendent of Police (SP), Angul, led by the Inspector Smruti Pradhan, acting on a tip-off, nabbed these hardcore criminals between Handappa and Boinda on National Highway while they were planning to commit a crime. During raid, the police team seized two four wheelers, mobile phones, SIM cards, plastic ropes and some important documents from their possessions.
Police sources said the area of operation of the gang went way beyond the boundaries of the district and spread across a vast stretch of the National Highway in the state passing through the districts of Sambalpur, Jharsuguda, Keonjhar, Cuttack, Bhadrak, Jajpur and Balasore. The accused have also confessed to have killed at least ten drivers and helpers in Angul district recently.
The accused were also involved in various cases, including the hijacking of an aluminium laden truck and killing of the driver and helper of a cement laden truck, registered against them at Hirakud, Parjanga, Kiakata, Nalco and Jaleswar police stations, sources added.