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Odisha court sentences Maoist leader to life imprisonment

Press Trust of India  |  Berhampur (Odisha) 

Maoist leader Sabyasachi Panda, who was arrested five years ago in Odisha's Ganjam district, was on Saturday sentenced to life imprisonment by a

court here for waging a war against the nation.

Panda, who was implicated in 134 cases in different police stations of Odisha, has been acquitted in 52 cases by varied courts so far. This was the first case in which the 50-year- old home-grown rebel leader was convicted by the local court.

Additional Sessions Judge S K Sahoo, while pronouncing life term for Panda, also slapped Rs 10,000 fine on him. He will have to undergo additional jail term of one year incase of default in paying the fine amount.

Panda was arrested by police from a residential house at Mangalabarapeta Street under Bada Bazara police station limits here on July 18, 2014 by a team of police led by then SP (Berhampur) Anirudha Singh.

During his arrest, police had seized around 800 grams gold ornaments, a revolver, a number of mobile phones and SIM cards, pen-drives, laptop and Maoist literature from his possession. Since then he has been housed in the circle jail here.

Panda was wanted by police in various districts as several Maoist-related cases were pending against him at the time of his arrest.

The court pronounced its verdict after examining the 15 witnesses, including police and others, said additional public prosecutor (APP) Gyanendra Nath Jena.

Deepak Patnaik, advocate of Panda, said he would appeal in the higher court against the verdict of the lower court.

I have enough faith that my client will get justice in the higher court, he said.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Sat, May 18 2019. 21:01 IST