Crime. Image Source: IANS News

Bhubaneswar, Dec 3 : Expelled Biju Janata Dal (BJD) MLA Pradeep Panigrahi was on Thursday arrested by the Crime Branch (CB) of Odisha Police for allegedly collecting money by promising jobs in a Tata company.

The Crime Branch officials said that Panigrahi collected money on behalf of Akash Kumar Pathak by falsely promising jobs in a Tata company to the people. Pathak, son of suspended IFS officer Abhay Pathak, falsely posed as a senior functionary of Tata Motors.

"Evidence has come to light that Panigrahi collected money on behalf of one Akash Kumar Pathak, falsely promising jobs in a Tata company to the people. The case relates to impersonation, cheating, forgery, criminal conspiracy and other cyber offences by Akash Kumar Pathak, who posed as in-charge Managing Director of Tata Motors' passenger car division," said the Crime Branch in a statement.

Notably, Pathak and his father IFS Abhay Kant Pathak have already been arrested for amassing assets disproportionate to their known sources of income.

Last week, the ruling BJD had expelled Panigrahi for anti-people activities. He was an MLA from Gopalpur in Ganjam district.

On the other hand, Sujata Panigrahi, the wife of Pradeep Panigrahi, said that a conspiracy has been hatched against her husband by the people in power.

"They are harassing us intentionally. It's a bigger political conspiracy. They are torturing us. I fear there is a threat to my husband. If anything happens to my husband, the Chief Minister will be responsible," said Sujata.

"The government is misutilising different agencies to trap my husband as a part of a bigger political conspiracy," she added.

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