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2 arrested, sent to jail for molesting woman in running bus

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OST Bureau

Jajpur, Nov 16:

A local court here Friday remanded two persons accused of molesting a woman to judicial custody after rejecting their bail plea.

The two were arrested by the Kuakhia police on charges of molesting and attempting to kidnap a middle aged woman.

The accused, Prafulla Sahu (35) and Alekha Palei (40) along with another person Manoj Samal (37) allegedly molested a woman passenger in a running bus and tried to kidnap her on Friday.

The  victim. a 34 year old woman was travelling from here to Bhubaneswar to inquire about the fate of the FIR she had filed with the Mahila Police Station there against two persons who had  allegedly assaulted her at the official residence of  a  BJD MLA  a couple of days ago.

According to the police, the three accused persons identified as Prafulla, Alekha and Manoj stopped the bus, in which the lady was travelling, at Gopalpur on NH-5 and pounced on her.

Police said the trio allegedly molested her inside the bus and dragged her out. But when they tried to force her into their van parked near the bus,  she raised an alarm following which local people gathered and captured two offenders.

Police arrested Prafulla Sahu (35) and Alekha Palei (40), both belonging to Gopalpur village in Jajpur district while another accused, identified as Manoj Samal (37) of Mathasahi-Ratalanga village, who was involved in the crime, managed to flee.

The victim, also hails from the same village – Mathasahi-Ratalanga village.

Officer-in-charge of Kuakhia police station Kumar Nayak said “On the basis of the FIR filed by the victim we have arrested two persons. The third accused will be arrested  very  soon and the vehicle used in the crime will be seized”.

However, the case appears complicated as there are reports that the victim was targeted on Friday because in her FIR filed with the Bhubaneswar Mahila police station earlier,  she had named and accused the ruling party MLA from Bari and former minister Debasish Nayak  of masterminding the assault on her by his ‘close supporters’.