Naba Das dies: Odisha Health Minister Naba Kishore Das who was shot at Brajarajnagar on Sunday succumbed to his injuries while undergoing treatment at Apollo Hospital in Bhubaneswar. “The injuries were repaired, and steps were taken to improve the pumping of the heart. He was given urgent ICU care. But, despite best of efforts, he could not be revived and succumbed to his injuries,” a statement issued by the hospital said.
The incident took place in Brajrajnagar town around 1 pm when the minister was on his way to attend a programme in the district. "Assistant Sub-inspector of Police (ASI) Gopal Das opened fire at the minister, who sustained bullet injuries," Brajrajnagar SDPO Gupteswar Bhoi told reporters. The accused ASI was nabbed by locals, who then handed him over to the police, he said.
CM Naveen directs CID and Crime branch to investigate the incident
Condemning the incident, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik said that the crime branch has been directed to take up the investigation of the case. Earlier today, a team of doctors led by Dr Debashish Nayak immediately attended to and operated on him. On operating was found that a single bullet had entered and exited the body, injuring the heart and left lung and causing massive internal bleeding and injury, the officials said.
PM Modi grieves Odisha minister's death
Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday expressed his grief at the death of Odisha government minister Naba Kishore Das. "Saddened by the unfortunate demise of Minister in Odisha Government, Shri Naba Kishore Das Ji. Condolences to his family in this tragic hour. Om Shanti," Modi said.
Health minister was shot from a close range
Speaking about the incident an eyewitness said, "At a public grievance office opening, Naba Das was the chief guest. When he arrived, crowd gathered to welcome him. Suddenly, a gunshot was heard. We saw police personnel running away after shooting from close range."
Tension prevailed in Brajrajnagar in the wake of the incident, with supporters of the BJD minister questioning "security lapses". Some of them claimed that a conspiracy was hatched to target him. Bhoi said that the ASI was currently being interrogated, and more details will be available after a thorough probe. The minister, a strongman in the mining hub of Jharsuguda, had switched over to the BJD from the Congress ahead of 2019 elections. He is known to have business interests in coal mining, transportation and hospitality sectors.
Accused's wife claims her husband has a mental disorder
Meanwhile, Gopal Das's wife Jayanati told reporters at her residence near Berhampur in Ganjam district that she heard the news about her husband firing at the minister from television channels. Jayanati said Das had some mental disorder for the last seven-eight years, and was taking medicines and appeared quite normal. She said her husband had made a video call to their daughter in the morning. Das had no personal enmity with the minister, said Jayanati, demanding a proper investigation into the matter to find out the truth.
(With inputs from agencies)
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