Mohammad Kadim was arrested for robbery involvement

Mohammad Kadim of Kumbharpada area in the town was arrested by Sambalpur police for his alleged involvement in robbery.

Two pistols, Rs 50,000 in cash and a motorcycle were seized from his possession, police said. SDPO PK Mohapatra informed that on August 22, three persons including Kadim had robbed Bablu Megwar and Chand Sharma of Burla on gun-point at Ring Road.

Following a complaint, police nabbed two of the accused Sk Shamim Ali and Mohhamad Samir, both of Kumbharpada, on August 23 and recovered from them mobile phone of the victim. Subsequently, Kadim was arrested on Tuesday.

Preliminary investigation revealed that Kadim has six cases pending against him of which, five are under Town police limits and one is under Dhanupali police limits. They have been remanded in judicial custody.

Girl dies after falling in hot curry cauldron

An eight-year-old girl student of a tribal residential school died of burn injuries on Sunday after she fell into a hot curry cauldron.

Banita Kahnhar, a Class III student of Sevashram School run by Odisha government at Girish Chandrapur village, accidentally fell into the cauldron when the students were jostling to get egg curry while the mid day meal was being served in the school, they said.

The girl was first taken to VSS Medical College Hospital at Burla and then shifted to the SCB Medical College Hospital at Cuttack on Saturday evening. After battling for life in the surgery ward of the hospital, Banita died on Sunday, said hospital emergency officer B.N. Maharana.

Strike enters Day 3, Nuapada too joins

The third day of agitation by the lawyers of Sambalpur Bar Association saw students of GM College boycott classes and close down the college over the High Court bench demand.

They staged demonstration outside the college shouting slogans against the State Government. Offices and courts remained closed while relay hunger strike launched by the lawyers with support from different political parties continued. Similar reports were received from Deogarh, Jharsuguda and Bargarh.

At Nuapada, lawyers on Thursday decided to join the agitation of the HC bench. The decision was taken at a meeting held here. It was attended by Nuapada BJD MLA Rajendra Dholokia, BJD district president Prasanna Padhi, District Congress Committee president Saroj Sahu and district BJP president Ashok Mitra, besides members of the Bar Association. It was also decided that all State Government offices and courts will be closed from Friday.

It meeting decided to lock up offices of Khariar NAC and Khariar Road NAC to prevent filing of nomination for ULB polls. The political parties agreed to withdraw nominations if those were filed till date.

Men call shots in women wards of Sambalpur

The State Government’s bid to empower women by involving them in decision making process of governance seems to have been derailed in Sambalpur district.

After the Government reserved 50 per cent of seats in rural as well as urban local bodies, women have come forward to file nominations. But it is their male relatives who are calling the shots in the entire election process.

Starting from availing tickets to campaigning and other election activities, either the husbands or other male relatives of the contestants are managing things making voters wonder who is the actual candidate. In Ward numbers 2, 4, 20, 22, 24, 26 and 27 of Sambalpur municipality, husbands of the women councillors act on their behalf. After the election, people rarely see the women councillors in any public platform. They remain present only at municipal council meetings to put their signatures.

Sources said in most cases, the male dominance starts from the process of selection of candidates. The husbands or sons of women candidates lobby for tickets. In many cases, there is hardly any interaction between women candidates and party leaders.

Officially, Ward no 2 is represented by Rashmita Acharya, Ward 4 by Ditptimayee Barik, Ward 20 by Anita Meher, Ward 22 by Shakuntala Satnami, Ward 22 by Lakshmi Bhoi, Ward 26 by Nitu Sahu and Ward 27 by Suryakanti Nayak. But these councillors are hardly found in the Municipality office or in their wards. While Rashmita, Diptimayee, Lakshmi, Nitu and Suryakanti are represented by their husbands Jaga Acharya, Suryanarayan Barik, Dilip Bhoi, Santosh Sahu and Umesh Nayak respectively, two other Councillors Anita and Shakuntala are represented by their brothers-in-law Chandra Meher and Banmali Satnami respectively.

This time, Wards 1, 3, 7, 8, 10, 11 and 22 of the total 29 Wards in the municipality are reserved for general caste women, Wards 2, 5, 13, 14 for backward class women, Wards 17 and 26 for SC women while Wards 27 and 29 are reserved for ST women.

23 arrested for fraud

Police have arrested 23 persons of a racket involved in embezzling `48 lakh from Indian Bank branch  by submitting fake documents, was busted by Bargarh Town police on Tuesday morning.

One Atmaram Panda of Dhanger village under Bargarh Sadar police limits, who is suspected to be the brain behind the fraud, managed to get an anticipatory bail from the Orissa High Court. He has currently, fled from the village. Involvement of bank officials in the fraud has not been ruled out. Police said bank officials are being quizzed and more arrests in the case are likely.

According to the preliminary investigation, 23 persons of the district had submitted forged documents and availed agriculture loans. Panda had helped them in preparing the fake documents and with the help of some officials of Indian Bank, got their loans sanctioned.

All the arrested persons hail from villages in Dhanger, Jamuda and Tora areas of the district. They had mentioned their wrong addresses in the documents submitted to the bank.