Home ODISHA LATEST Threat to petitioner in chit fund case: Chief Secretary on sticky wicket

Threat to petitioner in chit fund case: Chief Secretary on sticky wicket

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Odisha Sun Times Bureau

New Delhi/Bhubaneswar, March 5:

Chief secretary JK Mohapatra is known for his integrity and as an apolitical, no-nonsense officer. But with his less than proper role in the attempt to bail out the state government and make a ‘sacrificial goat’ out of a deputy superintendent of police (DSP), who allegedly threatened the petitioner in the PIL on the multi-thousand crore chit fund scam in Odisha, being heard by the Supreme Court,  that image is now under serious threat of being besmirched.

Jugal Kishore Mohapatra
Jugal Kishore Mohapatra

“The chief secretary is in a soup after ‘lying’ – to the Supreme Court, no less – on the nature of the visit of the officer in the dock, DSP Pramod Kumar Panda of CID-CB, to New Delhi,” a senior official of the state Home department told OST.

While Mohapatra sought to pass off Panda’s visit to New Delhi, during which he is alleged to have threatened the petitioner Alok Jena of ‘dire consequences’ if he did not withdraw the PIL, as an ‘unauthorized’ (and therefore ‘private’) visit, documents in possession of OST prove otherwise.

In an ‘official’ letter to the Advocate on Record (AoR) of the Supreme Court S Mishra (DO No Home-SPS Case 4-01/14 5241/CS (Home), Bhubaneswar dated February 5, 2014), Mohapatra claimed that ‘the visit undertaken by the said officer has not been sanctioned by the Hon’ble Chief Minister, State of Odisha’.

But a Home department requisition (HOME-PROT-RA-0005/2014- 2262/RES dated Bhubaneswar the 17 th of January, 2014) for accommodation in Odisha Niwas/Bhavan in the national capital leaves no room for doubt that Panda and a fellow officer DSP Saroj Kumar Rath, Economic Offences Wing (EOW), CID-CB, were indeed on an ‘official’ visit during the period in question.

The requisition shows that Suite No 1303 in Odisha Niwas was booked in the name of Panda and Rath (one bed each) at the rate of Rs 40 a day – a rate applicable only when a state government employee is on official tour to Delhi- from January 19 to January 22.

Govt order for Orissa Niwas room for Panda
Govt order for Orissa Niwas room for Panda

It may be noted that Panda is alleged to have made suspicious inquiries at the Dwarka apartment-where Jena stays- on January 19 and threatened to ‘eliminate’ him if he did not withdraw his PIL in the apex court in full view of many lawyers and several media persons on January 22.

Panda has now been placed under suspension and an inquiry launched against him after the hullabaloo over the alleged intimidation of the petitioner in the case.

But Mohapatra found himself on a sticky wicket even on this issue.

During the brief hearing of the case in the Supreme Court on Tuesday, Suresh Tripathy, the counsel for Alok Jena pointed out another gross anomaly which he said nailed the chief secretary’s efforts to ‘hush up’ the case.

“The inquiry against the DSP was started by the Home secretary on February 7.  In that case, how could the chief secretary write two days earlier i.e. on February 5 that an inquiry had already been initiated?” Tripathy wondered.

Interestingly, although the state Home Secretary had ordered Panda to present himself before him on February 7  for an inquiry ” on allegations against him in a Supreme Court related matter”, the officer was placed under suspension on February 5 (vide letter no Home-SPS-Case-4-0001-2014/5238 /5.2.2014), two days ahead of the inquiry process.

With the apex court postponing the hearing in the case to March 26, the Odisha government – and the chief secretary, by extension – may have got a breather. But Jena’s counsel Suresh Tripathy on Tuesday has already raised this issue before the Supreme Court bench hearing the PIL on the chit fund scam. More questions about his role in the whole messy affair are bound to come up when the court takes up the hearing next.

As it appears, the chief secretary had nothing to do with DSP Panda’s Delhi trip or his acts of omission and commission out there, but what emerges out of all this is, he was trying to protect someone either in the state police or Home department or someone ‘very powerful’.

The question is : who and what prompted him to go against his grains and make an official statement to convert an official trip of a officer deputed to Delhi as an ‘unauthorised’ one ?

A retired bureaucrat expressing his disappointment over the chief secretary’s ‘statement’ to the apex court said, ” He is all set to join the long list of ministers, MLAs and other influential leaders of the ruling Biju Janata Dal (BJD) whose reputations have taken a severe beating after details of their role in facilitating the chit fund scam emerged.”

23 COMMENTS

  1. If BJD is voted to power once again in Orissa, it will demolish all private residential buildings in Bhubaneswar using BDA and police, to divert people’s attention from its involvement in various scams.

  2. Chief Secretary protecting whom ? The Chief Minister of Odisha,Advocate General,Home Secretary or Crime Branch ? Or people who shut their eyes to the loot by chit fund companies for many years.

    There are allegations that DSP Panda also threatened the petitioner Alok Jena and his family members for taking the name of CM,AG in the court and telling the court about inefficiency of Crime Branch. He also allegedly threatened to eliminate Alok Jena and his family.

    We know that senior police official tried to utilise some of the senior Congress leaders, journalists and other friends to ask the petitioner to withdraw the PIL on Chit Fund Scam Case PIL in the Hon’ble Supreme Court.

    This is most unfair. Because Orissa is the poorest state in the country the CM,Ministers,high officials,Police and influential immoral looters are out to suppress the voice of poor Odias and their right to get Justice.

  3. Corruption is deep rooted in police and even judiciary.Never appreciate a top cop for exposing a few chit fund scams thinking that the cop is honest. Chit funds have been thriving in odisha since ages, cheating people of crores of rupees under knowledge and patronage of cops and politicians. If a few chit fund scams are exposed now, it does not mean that cops have become citizen-friendly and noble overnight in their behaviour. There are other things behind the expose, one of which may be that the the cops could be aiming to cover up their shady past by making some arrests in a few land and fund scams and thereby trying to make a mountain of a mole hill.

  4. Criminals in Crime Branch of Odisha.

    It is surprising every body that why DSP Pramod Panda of Odisha Crime Branch is not yet arrested for threatening Petitioner Alok Jena in Supreme Court premises on 22.1.2014? Who is trying to save him? Why the Chief Secretary gave a false statement about the visit of Panda to Delhi? Was the Chief Secretary misguided by any public servant of Home department about Panda visit?

    From a reliable source it was conformed that DSP Pramod Panda had committed one more serious crime by making a call from his mobile No. 09437051008 to the Mobile No. 09937152938 (Mobile of one family member of Alok Jena) at 09.37 AM on 21.1.2014 (on the day of hearing of Chit Fund Scam case in Supreme Court) and threatened to eliminate Jena and his family member if Jena do not withdraw the case from SC). I am requesting the Director General of Odisha Police Sri Prakash Mishra to order an investigation about all the call details of DSP Panda from his Mobile No. 9437051008 during his stay in Delhi from 19 to 22 of Jan 2014 and whether Panda’s aforesaid mobile was operating in Dwaraka (Sahajahanbad Society), Delhi on 19.1.2014 between 02.50PM to 03.30PM or not? Most probably one more complaint was being filed against DSP panda for threatening the family member of Jena over mobile on 21.1.2014.

  5. A case has been registered in Delhi and being investigated by Delhi Police. The matter is in the apex Court. Let people respect the law rather than spread calumny against Chief Secretary, Crime Branch and whoever they can. These officers will say whatever they have to say in the Courts and the Court is competent to take a final call. The campaign in the social media is motivated and frivolous.

    • Mr. Mahakudu,
      From your opinion I could able to predict that either you are worried about Chief Secretary who had misguided people of Odisha by giving a false statement in Indian Express about DSP Panda or worried about the Chit Fund Operators who are in jail and you are not at all worried about twenty lakhs people who lost their hard earning.

      If anybody is going against the law by giving his opinion then law will punish him, if you feel insulted or humiliated by the opinion (bitter truth) of any person then you can file case in appropriate Court instead of advising Odisha Sun Times or any citizen. India is the largest democratic country and every citizen has got the right to exercise his fundamental right under Article 19 (1) (a) to give his opinion. Thanks to Odisha Sun Times for publishing the correct and updated news with documentary proof and I think this type of news has pinched several corrupt public servants who are hand in glove with the fraud Chit Fund operators and accumulated unaccounted movable and immovable properties.

    • Mr. Mahakudu, your statement is wrong, as per my knowledge minimum Three Cases were filed in Delhi.

      1. For visiting Alok Jena’s enclave and introducing himself as West Bengal police to the President of the Sahanajabad Society on 19.1.2014 (CCTV Footage).

      2. For threatening Alok Jena in Supreme Court Premises on 22.1.2014.

      3. For communicating one of the family member of Alok Jena from his mobile No. 09437051008 to the Mobile No. 09937152938 (Mobile of one family member of Alok Jena) at 09.37 AM on 21.1.2014 (on the day of hearing of Chit Fund Scam case in Supreme Court) and threatened to eliminate Jena and his family member if Jena do not withdraw the case from SC).

  6. Sri J.K.Mohapatra, IAS, Chief Secretary, has not filed any affidavit on the subject before the Supreme Court. Any communication between Sri Mohapatra and any of his advocates is a strictly privileged communication. In the last hearing the apex court had responded to the submission by Mr. Suresh Tripathy, Advocate for the petitioner, that ‘you are trying to make a mountain out of a mole’. Sun Times is advised to get their story verified rather than rely on motivated propaganda.

      • Odisha Sun times Bureau,

        a lot of thanks to this news paper and to the people who are working in it. This news paper has published all the news regarding the Mega Chit Fund Scam, millions of people could able to know the latest development of the PIL in Supreme Court through this news paper and keeping their hope alive. God Bless all of you.

    • Mr. Mahakudu, Without knowing any thing you are giving baseless comment and misguide people. Please ask information under RTI Act to Home Department asking the Photostat copy of “D.O.No. home-SPS CASE 4- 01/14 5241/CS (Home) Bhubaneswar, date the 5th Feb 2014”. After getting the copy of it you will clear all your ambiguity. Any official communication between the Chief Secretary and the Government Advocate is a public document and not personal document and citizens have got the right to know the details of any official communication between public servants under Article 19 (1) (a) in Constitution of India 1949.

      • RTI act is a failure in odisha. Government officials do not care about RTI at all and RTI commissioners also openly endorse all acts of denial of information by the PIOs. I myself have witnessed how the RTI commissioners are harsh on RTI applicants even though they have been wrongly denied information by the PIOs. In stead of appointing former bureaucrats, who were loyal to the ruling party, as RTI commissioners, the government should rather appoint deserving and intellectual persons having good track record of honesty and social service as RTI commissioners henceforth.

    • Dear Mr Mahakud, Chief Secretary can go to press before filing affidavit in Hon’ble Supreme Court,as because he is an IAS officer ? What govt document says. You can come to Supreme Court on behaf of the CS,Odisha. Pls change your mind set.Do not accept the slavery of IAS and IPS officers.Some of the IAS/IPS officers are real examples for the country.But some of them are also mad with the temporary power they enjoy in life and often misuse it. We know the Court better than you. Do you need the details of how Odisha Govt behaves irresponsibly in the Hon’ble apex court of the country ? No one is above the Hon’ble Supreme Court.

  7. Out of 100 cases some times a few come out to limelight due to improper handling, Odisha government is quite a master in taking care of such cases and route the cases in the ways of law. Anything more ?

  8. Mohammad Suffian,Times Now Reportor Odisha Says in social media (fb) that>

    Ironically NaPa chooses Pramod Panda to threaten petitioner fighting for Chit Fund cause,Pramod panda’s Nephew and owner of Swastik Group(one of leading chit fund company)Jagabandhu Panda who was also Director of AT Group is languishing in Jharpara Jail,Height of Tranparency by NaPa regime
    11 hours ago · Like

    • Mr. Anoop Sing, if your above mention statement is correct then this Chit Fund Scam and the act of DSP Pramod Panda in Delhi deserves CBI inquiry. Vigilance Department should find out the unaccounted property of this police officer soon.

  9. Communication between a client and his advocate, communication between husband and wife are privileged communication under Indian Laws. Do we need to find out what Mr. Jayanta Das may or may not have said to his lawyers in the criminal cases in which he is facing trial. Matter is in the apex court and we need to respect the law of the land. Shrillness does not establish merit of any claim, nor does abuse. Sad to see what is happening to Sun Times. Why can’t the news paper talk to a lawyer to know what the law says?
    If the news paper wants to write anything against the Chief Secretary, ethics demands that they get in touch with the Chief Secretary or at least say that they tried to contact, but were unable or that the CS refused to comment. Is it ethical for Sun Times to let its forum be hijacked by a some unscrupulous elements who have become ‘Thekadars’ of probity while facing all sorts of criminal charges in the various courts. Is Sun Times a pulp?

    • Mr Mahakud, our report is based on facts. The CS has already made a statement to a national daily that the DSP was on a private trip to Delhi. So there was no need to cross check with him on this. The content of his correspondence with AOR was mentioned only as an additional evidence. We have done our homework before publishing the report and we assure you we will make amends if we come across irrefutable facts to the contrary. Finally, whether we are pulp or have any substance would be better judged by our readers including you. We need not comment on that. -OST Desk

  10. My dear friend I do not know whether Mahakud is your correct name or a fake one but I could know that you know me properly. I am an RTI Activist and I have already disclosed about my Criminal cases in detail in Social Media long back and you can get details about my cases from http://www.ecourts.gov.in, if you are keenly interested. One social Activist or an RTI Activist always face such Criminal cases and I do not bother about it because I believe in truth and Court of Law.

    The communication between the advocate and the Chief Secretary is not a private one (as you have compared it with the communication between husband and wife).

    Any communication between any Public Servant is a PUBLIC INFORMATION hence this can not be compared with the communication between husband and wife.

    By giving a false statement to public through news papers the CS has violated his constitutional duty.

    Odisha Sun Times has published the news with proper documentary proof.

    • We have decided not to carry any further comments on the story. We would, however, appreciate if comments, information and facts with regard to the report are mailed to [email protected]. We will then take a call on what to publish. -OST Desk

  11. Dear OST, by going through all the comments I could able to predict that your regular publication regarding Chit Fund Scam and regarding the latest development of PIL filed by Alok Jena in supreme Court has puzzled a lot of corrupt public servants who are equally responsible for this mega scam in Odisha because the Home Department of Odisha had sent one Letter to the Addl. D.G. & I.G. of Police, CID, CB Orissa to keep an close watch on fraud Chit Fund Operators in Odisha in its Letter No. 16891 dated 27.04.2004.

  12. Mr. Jayant Kumar Das, I am proud of you for exposing the corrupt officials of Odisha government especially the policemen. I fully agree with your views, being myself well aware how deeply corruption is infested in the police department. Your latest comments are also no different from one of previous comments by Mr. Manoj and I know very well how policemen take bribe and implicate innocents in Odisha under the very support and knowledge of their higher officials. I myself was victimised by a few cops a few years back by taking bribe from my enemies and not only that the judicial officials also sided with the corrupt criminals and out of utter shock my father fell ill and died soon after. I feel very encouraged that you have exposed a few of them who were instrumental in victimising me and my family in a false case and it is the almighty god that I got enough strength to fight back both the corrupt police and judicial officers. My good wishes to you for all you noble missions.

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