Archana Nag case: Opposition demands CM Naveen Patnaik’s resignation
The BJP also attacked the government over the issue alleging that Patnaik’s silence shows Biju Janata Dal (BJD) leaders are involved
The inaugural day of the winter session of Odisha Assembly witnessed an uproar over the issue of the Archana Nag sextortion scandal with the opposition Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and Congress demanding the resignation of Odisha chief minister Naveen Patnaik.
Accusing Patnaik of being a mute spectator, Congress Legislature Party (CLP) leader Narasingha Mishra raised the issue in the House and alleged that several leaders and ministers are involved in the case. Chief minister Naveen Patnaik should make a statement, he said, further demanding his resignation.
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“The CM has not yet made any statement on the issue. By not speaking a single word about the incident, he is saving them (criminals). He must resign as he has no moral authority to stay on the post,” said Mishra, adding that the Enforcement Directorate (ED) probe into the case is on the right path.
“The ED has questioned and arrested the persons who were spared by the state police. This proves that the police are hand in gloves with the criminals,” Mishra said.
The BJP also attacked the state government over the issue alleging that Patnaik’s silence shows Biju Janata Dal (BJD) leaders are involved.
“The silence of the chief minister is pointing fingers at the BJD leaders’ involvement in the case. So, CM Naveen should resign from his position without any delay,” said Mohan Majhi, chief whip of BJP.
Meanwhile, the probe into the money laundering in the Archana Nag case continued with ED interrogating the businessman brother of BJD’s Dhenkanal MLA Sudhir Samal. ED officials also questioned Gangadhar Samal, owner of a car showroom in Dhenkanal over his alleged financial transactions amounting to about ₹30 lakh with Archana.
On Wednesday, businessman Amiya Kanta Das, a close associate of late Congress leader Lalatendu Mohapatra, was also interrogated for allegedly paying ₹10 lakh to Archana.
ED officials said a production petition has been filed before the court of Khurda district judge for taking Archana and her husband on remand so that they can be interrogated together with Shraddhanjali Behera, a former associate of Archana, whose FIR last month led to the Arachan’s arrest.
Shraddhanjali was interrogated by ED officials on Wednesday during which she gave the names of some influential people from whom Archana extorted money. She also shared the modus operandi adopted by Archana to blackmail victims.
Archana Nag was arrested in October on the charge of blackmailing rich and influential people through ‘sextortion’.
It should be noted that as many as 25 MLAs, political leaders, and ministers have fallen into the trap of Archana Nag’s sex ring.