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CRPF begins probe into run

The probe was necessitated by a report sought by the NHRC from director-general CRPF, New Delhi on Budhia's 65-km run last week.

india Updated: May 10, 2006 01:48 IST

Budhia may not be running, but the spotlight is still on him. The additional-director general (east) of CRPF began probing the circumstances under which Budhia Singh's 65-km marathon from Puri to Bhubaneswar on May 2 was sponsored by the local paramilitary unit and how permission was granted to CRPF jawans to run with Budhia in batches.

The probe was necessitated by a report sought by the NHRC from director-general CRPF, New Delhi on Budhia's 65-km run last week. The NHRC has also sought a report from the Orissa chief secretary. The CRPF DG had earlier asked the ADG (east) to conduct the probe and submit the report to the headquarters. The CRPF had earlier clarified that the decision to sponsor the event was taken by CRPF DIG B.S. Gill and no permission was taken from the CRPF headquarters.

On the ADG’s visit, Gill refused to say anything. Asked about the nature of interaction between the ADG and Budhia, Gill said, “Whenever, I am in Kolkata, I will have to call on the ADG. But when the ADG is here, he is not supposed to meet me or reveal the nature of his interaction with me.” The ADG, sources said, met coach Biranchi Das and four-year-old Budhia on the CRPF campus here.

Coach Biranchi Das clarified that the CRPF never forced Budhia to run the marathon. It was only after the coach sought assistance that the CRPF decided to help on humanitarian ground, sources said.

The coach might file a contempt case against the Child Welfare Committee, women and child welfare minister Pramilla Mallick, doctors of the medical board, who examined Budhia and the police who brought them “forcibly” to the Capital Hospital.

On May 4, the Orissa High Court had granted an interim stay on any coercive action against Budhia's coach under the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection) Act, 2000.