Family Of Former Athagarh MLA Ostracised In Village

Cuttack: A social boycott has been imposed on the family of former MLA from Athagarh Ramesh Rout by residents of Radhagovindapur village over land dispute.

The elder brother of the former legislator elected in 2009 has lodged a police complaint with the Athagarh police station in this connection. Ramesh’s elder brother Laxmidhar alleged that electricity and drinking water supply to Ramesh’s house has been forcefully disconnected.

“We have purchased a piece of land measuring more than 1 acre at Rasarasikapur in Athagarh Town in 1998. However, another man who had also purchased a portion of land on the same plot has been forcing us to vacate the land,” alleged Laxmidhar.

Family members of Ramesh also alleged that the decision to boycott the family was taken by the gram sabha. “After we refused to accept his offer a meeting was convened in the village where they forced us to obey their direction. But we did not bend down for which our family faced the consequence,” said added Laxmidhar.

He also said that the female members of the family are also being harassed. “We also demand police protection as our family members are facing life threat,” said Laxmidhar.

Ramesh Rout had won the Athagarh assembly seat in 2009 as an independent candidate after BJD heavyweight Ranendra Pratap Swain could not contest the election as his nomination papers were rejected for non-submission of the original copy of the party ticket.

However, Swain later challenged the decision in Orissa High Court which pronounced the election of Ramesh Rout as null and void. The Apex Court also upheld the verdict of the Orissa High Court for which by-election was held for the assembly constituency in 2012.

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