NHRC sought Action Taken Report from SP, Nayagarh on complaint of “Merciless Attack on Physically Handicapped RTI Activist by Hooligans and subsequent Hospitalisation in Odisha”
On 23.11.15, National Human Rights Commission has given direction for enquiry and sought Action Taken Report within four weeks from SP, Nayagarh into alleged Merciless Attack on Keshab Mahakud, Physically Handicapped RTI Activist of Nayagarh district by Hooligans and subsequent Hospitalisation in Odisha and police inaction despite FIR being lodged several times ( Copy is attached) . The Complaint dated 4.10.15 was filed by Pradip Pradhan, State Convener, Odisha Soohana Adhikar Abhijan to NHRC seeking Direction to the State Govt. to make Crime Branch enquiry into it and take stringent action against the criminals, politicians and police officers involved in it and to reimburse the bill paid by him for treatment, award Rs. 10 lakh compensation as he was made cent percent physically invalid due to this attack. and DG, Police to ensure of registration of all FIRs filed by Sri Mahakud in different police stations, conduct enquiry into it and take action accordingly.
Sri Keshab Mahakud, a middle-aged, physically handicapped man ( one limb is lost ) belonging to Kashikiari village in Nayagarh district of Odisha has been using RTI to exercise his right to access the information under RTI Act and expose corruption ad irregularities in implementation of Govt. work. He fell a victim of conspiracy by a nexus of unscrupulous politicians, corrupt officials of police and administration at district level and anti-social elements, for his constant endeavour to use RTI to expose their illegal and ant-people activities. On 22.9.15, on his way to Bus stand, a gang of 6 hooligans ( Baru Parida, Kahnei Nayak, Nibasi Parida, Nalu Parida, Bharat Nayak, Ashok Nayak ) attacked him and mercilessly hit him with lethal weapons including an iron rod damaging his two legs and one hand permanently. All the crucial documents such as his voter ID card and BPL Card were snatched away by the miscreants. As a result of multiple bruises and profuse bleeding caused by this sudden but pre-meditated attack, Sri Mahakud fell unconscious and the goons abandoned him on the spot. However, after getting telephone call from some unknown source, the police staff of Mahipur Police Outpost rescued him and sent him to Nayagarh Hospital for treatment, where from he was again transferred to the Capital Hospital, Bhubaneswar, and finally from there to the S.C.B. Medical College and Hospital, Cuttack. Though his son Kuber Mahakud has filed an FIR in Nuagaon Police station of Nayagarh district, the police is yet to nab the culprits.
On 29th Sept. 2015, a team of RTI Activists had met him to get the information about details of the issues which led to occurrence of such incident and merciless attack o him. While narrating his tale of story, involvement and conspiracy of police and powerful political people, he said that he had filed RTI Application on 14.12.14 to the PIO, office of DFO, Wildlife, Nayagarh seeking information about total number of deer in Kuanria Deer Park, Dasapalla and total expenditure made for maintenance of the Park etc. On 1.1.2015, on the occasion of observation of New Year Day, a feast with deer meat was organised at Forest Bungalow near Kuanria Dam in Dasapalla in the presence of Sri Arun sahu, Minister of State for Law, Govt. of Odisha, Sri L.N. Behera DFO Wildlife, Sri P.K. Mandhata ACF, Sri Rabi Kar Ranger and some others. The Deer used for the feast was brought from the nearest Kuanria Deer Park. Sri Keshab Mahakund was called by the Ranger to that Forest Bugalow for a discussion about the information to be supplied to him. After reaching there, he noticed two forest guards preparing the deer meat to be served to the invitees. He took a photograph of it and ran away. However, a forest guard had noticed it. He informed to the Ranger about it. Sri Rabi Kar, Ranger immediately rushed to capture Sri Keshab Mahakud and nabbed him at Sariganda village. He took away the mobile phone of Keshab and severely beat him up. As he is a physically handicapped person, he could not resist him. However, on the same day, Keshab sought to file an FIR in Dasapalla Police Station. As the police did not register his FIR, he sent a complaint petition to the Chief Minister and as well to the Governor, Odisha seeking justice.
His ordeal does not end there. Finding no justice from any quarters, he sat on Dharana in front of Odisha Legislative Assembly on 12.2.15 demanding action against the police and enquiry into the deer feast. Sri Tapan Patnaik, ACP, Capital Police Station, Bhubaneswar persuaded him to go to the police station to sort out his grievance. However, on reaching there he was locked up in the police station and handed over to Sri Abhimanyu Nayak Sub-Divisional Police Officer (SDPO) Nayagarh and to the Inspector In-Charge, Itamati Police Station of Nayagarh district (90 kms from Bhubaneswar) who were specially called for it. Sri Nayak carried him to the Itamati Police Station, framed false charges against him and sent him to jail on the next day. He spent 6 days each in Nayagarh Jail and Choudwar jail and got free after the lower court granted him bail. He was released from jail on 28.2.15.