Bhubaneswar, Dec 4
The Odisha government today decided to drop all cases against research scholar and journalist Abhijeet Iyer Mitra who made ‘derogatory’ remarks against the Jagannath and Konark Temples and the State law makers in social media.
An official release here said, “Government have decided not to accord sanction of prosecution in cases where prosecution has been sought for and also decided to take steps to withdraw other cases pending against him by following laid-down procedures.”
The release said Mitra had made an appeal to the State Government to consider withholding sanction to prosecute him in certain criminal cases pending against him.
He also appealed ‘to accept his apology and contrition’ in having wounded the sentiments of people of Odisha without intention.
The release said, “He has further mentioned that in consideration of his unconditional apology in having hurt the sentiments of people of Odisha unintentionally “without malice or mal-intent” the Hon’ble Odisha Legislative Assembly have pardoned him on 16th November, 2018.”
Notably, the comments of Mitra had drawn widespread condemnation in the State and criminal cases were registered against him in Bhubaneswar and Konark police stations.
He was also quizzed by a House Committee headed by Leader of Opposition Narasingha Mishra.
Mitra, reportedly a friend of expelled BJD leader Baijayant Panda, is ill in Jharpada jail.
His letter urging the State government to release him was sent to the Chief Minister, Chief Secretary and others by jail officials yesterday.
However the former MP has denied that Mitra was his friend.