CM allocates Maharathy’s portfolio among two ministers

Bhubaneswar, Jan 7: Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik has allocated the departments handled by Pradeep Maharathy, who resigned from the council of ministers on Sunday in the wake of public outcry for his comments on the acquittal of two accused of infamous Pipili gang rape in 2011, among two other Ministers—Finance Minister Sashibhusan Behera and SC/ST Minister Minister Ramesh Majhi.

 Finance minister Sashi Bhusan Behera has been given the additional charge of Agriculture and Animal Resources Development (ARD) while SC and ST Development minister Ramesh Majhi will remain in the additional charge of Panchayati Raj and Drinking Water.

The opposition had been baying for Maharathy’s blood since his controversial statement following the acquittal of two brothers in the Pipili gang rape and murder case. Prime Minister Narendra Modi too had slammed the state government for failing to provide justice to the rape victim during his Baripada rally on Saturday.

Taking strong exception to the atrocious statement of Maharathy, who after the verdict of the Court on December 24 had said that the justice has been meted out to the victim and her family, the Opposition Congress and BJP had demanded his immediate ouster and sought an unconditional apology from him.

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