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Odisha rights panel to probe alleged police assault on city lawyer

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Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Bhubaneswar, July 24:

Odisha Law Minister Arun Sahoo today announced that the Odisha Human Rights Protection Cell (OHRPC) will be probing into the alleged brutal attack by police on the city based lawyer.

The minister further announced that the government will bear the treatment expenses of the injured lawyer.

Arun Sahoo Arun SahuNihar Ranjan Sethi, a member of the Bhubaneswar Bar Association, was allegedly beaten up by policemen late on Wednesday night while he was on his way home near Ravi Talkies square. Sethi had complained of serious injuries inflicted by the police on his scrotum and other parts of the body. He had said one of his testicles, which got badly damaged during the police assault, had to be removed by doctors in a private nursing home where he is still undergoing treatment.

Protesting alleged police inaction in the matter, members of the Bhubaneswar bar had blocked the road and in the frenzy a police jeep was set on fire on Monday.

However, Commissionerate Police on Tuesday evening released CCTV footage to establish that the concerned lawyer had alcoholic drinks in a city bar and met with an accident shortly thereafter. The commissioner had said Sethi was found lying unconscious on the highway stretch between Vani Vihar square and Rasulgarh square on the same night and after getting a call from a good samaritan, police control room had dispatched two PCR vans to rescue Sethi and had him shifted to the Capital Hospital, where he was released after being provided first aid.

The Odisha High Court Bar Association members, expressing solidarity with their Bhubaneswar brethren, were on a two day cease work till Wednesday while strongly protesting against the alleged police attack on the lawyer.

Moreover, the All Odisha Lawyers’ Association here Wednesday had demanded an impartial probe into the alleged police attack on Bhubaneswar lawyer Nihar Ranjan Sethi and adequate compensation for him.

At a press conference here, office bearers of the Association had demanded an impartial probe to be conducted by a sitting judge of Odisha High Court, High Court monitored CBI probe or probe by Human Rights Commission into the matter.

“The inquiry of Commissionerate Police against its personnel would not be impartial. So, we demand an impartial inquiry to the attack on one of our members by the police,” the secretary of the association Jyanaranjan Mohanty ahd said while demanding a compensation of Rs 10 lakh to the victim.