Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Kendrapara, Jan 30:

In a fresh twist to the controversy over the alleged fraudulent withdrawal of nominations for Samiti Sabhya post in Penthapala gram panchayat in Odisha’s Kendrapara district, Samiti Sabhya candidate Gayatri Sethy today claimed that she had herself in person withdrawn her nominations.

Gayatri has informed Kendrapara Collector in writing on this account. She has claimed that she had issued statements declining her withdrawal of nominations after being pressurized by Congress leaders to do so.

“I was present when my wife had called on the BDO to withdraw her nomination. Her proposer too was present there at that time. After being pressurized by Congress leaders my wife had issued statements declining of having withdrawn her nominations,” said Daitari Sethy, Gayatri’s husband.

On the other hand, the Congress has demanded a probe into the incident to unravel the truth.

“Gayatri Sethy has committed another mistake by supporting the MLA (Kishore Tarai). Gayatri on January 22 had alleged before the police that her nominations had been fraudulently withdrawn. Gayatri is lying. Let good sense prevail on her. She has done nothing under pressure from Congress leaders. Congressmen don’t have such character. I hold the state government and the MLA responsible for this. She has changed her statement for the greed of money or under fear. Let it be probed and may truth come to the fore,” said senior Congress leader Ganeswar Behera in his reactions on the U-turn of Gayatri Sethy.

However, Tarai has declined of having influenced Gayatri to take a U-turn.

“Congress’s allegation is false. I have no role in it,” said Tarai in his reaction on Gayatri’s U-turn.

It was alleged that Tarai had in connivance with Pattamundai BDO had fraudulently withdrawn nominations of two other Samiti Sabhya candidates of Penthapala panchayat to get his wife Babita Tarai elected uncontested.

Gayatri had filed a complaint with the police in this regard and had also submitted a complaint to State Election Commission (SEC) accompanied by Congress leaders.