Keonjhar, Jan 22:
Keonjhar police has arrested the prime accused in the sensational murder of minerals trader Patel Mahanta and seized a huge cache of arms from him.
The arrested has been identified as Mahendra Giri (40) son of Iswar Chandra Giri of Hindola village under Ghagarbeda police limits in Mayurbhanj district.
Acting on a tip off, a police team overpowered Mahendra while he was walking down to Kashipur village in Keonjhar district after alighting from a bus at around 5 pm on Monday. Police has seized four guns, six live cartridges, two mobile phone handsets, five magazines and a Hero Honda motorcycle (OR11J 4547) from his possession.
Mahendra ran his criminal network in Keonjhar, Mayurbhanj, Sambalpur, Jharsuguda and Rourkela, besides the neighbouring state of Jharkhand, from a rented house in Kashipur owned by one Sahajahan Khan, said police sources.
According to the police, Mahendra is an interstate criminal with more than a hundred cases lodged against him in different police stations of the state.
At a press conference here on Tuesday, Keonjhar SP DR Ray said Mahendra had shot at Patel with an aim to extort money from him and his businessmen friends. DSP Ajay Pratap Swain and Keonjhar IIC Rabinarayan Padhi were alos present at the press conference.
It may be mentioned that Keonjhar police had arrested two criminals in connection with the murder of Patel Mahanta on December 28 last year. They are Munna Das (33) and Purna Chandra Hembram of Badahal village in Keonjhar district.
With Monday’s arrest of Mahendra. the total number of accused arrested in the Patel Mahanta murder case stands at three. Police suspects involvement of more criminals in the murder case.