In a big development, it came to light that a Cow Protection Activist in Odisha’s Rayagada district, was harassed, jailed, tortured and assaulted allegedly at the behest of top bureaucrats, including District Collector Jagannath Mohanty. It was revealed when Union Minister Maneka Gandhi wrote a strong worded letter to CM Naveen Patnaik.
As per the information, Animal Activist Tirtha kKumar Sahu was arrested and tortured by the District Collector after he took on the cattle Mafia and sought to expose the inefficiency and ineffectiveness of the district administration. The Collector, Assistant Collector and DSP were reportedly involved in the incident.
Tirtha Kumar Sahu had been protesting illegal smuggling of cows to West Bengal, Telangana and Andhra Pradesh from Odisha. According to Maneka, the Collector has personal scores to settle with Sahu and he wanted to teach him a lesson. Many NGOs and activists. Who try to stop cattle smuggling in Rayagada district, were targeted in the past.
Tirtha Kumar Sahu is a volunteer of Gau Gyan Foundation. H has been working for ghe rehabilitation of cattle for the last three years. He filed 180 cases in Orissa High Court last year against the civil and police administration. After his arrest, a local NGO Bharat Raksha Manch took up his case.
As per Maneka Gandhi’s letter, “Sahu went to the grievance cell of Rayagada district collector Jagannath Mohanty to protest the smuggling of thousands of cattle during the previous fortnight. The Assistant collector Ishaq Madina tore up his shirt while the collector Mohanty beat him up. Dy SP Santanu Mohanty kicked him in the chest and groins. Sahu was kept in police lock-up unlawfully for 27 hours and booked in a slew of cases under the IPC including section 307. All the actions of the civil and police administration so far indicate vindictiveness and an attempt to kill Sahu”.
” The Assistant Collector visited Rayagada police station and threatened to “ruin the life” of Sahu while spitting on himOn April 7 morning, Sahu was attacked by goons inside the jail premises and was hit with iron rods. He had to be hospitalised. Even after this murderous attack, a false case was filed against Sahu,” alleged Maneka Gandhi, while seeking the intervention of Naveen Patnaik.