Bhubaneswar, Aug. 27: The Opposition today described the city as the crime capital of the state in the Assembly and said no one was safe here.
According to the government statistics, Bhubaneswar recorded 46 murder cases in 2012, a significant rise from 2009 when the number of such cases was 30. Incidents of rape have also gone up from 32 in 2009 to 56 in 2012.
On the concluding day of the monsoon session, the House witnessed a stormy debate on the issue of deteriorating law and order situation.
However, chief minister Naveen Patnaik said the overall crime situation in the state was by and large under control barring a few incidents.
Raising the law and order issue through an adjournment motion, Opposition chief whip Prasad Harichandan said: “Even the conviction rate is low compared to the all-India statistics.” He also said guns were being smuggled into the state from Bangladesh. “According to media reports, guns enter the state from Bangladesh through the sea route. But no steps have been taken to check the entry of guns. The marine police stations are almost defunct.”
Leader of Opposition Bhupinder Singh said crime against women was rising, even in Bhubaneswar. BJP leader K.V. Singh Deo echoed Singh’s views.
Naveen said: “Steps are being taken to strengthen the prosecution system. The Odisha Public Service Commission is taking steps for the recruitment of 11 public prosecutors, 26 additional public prosecutors and 207 assistant public prosecutors. In sensitive special cases, public prosecutors are being engaged to expedite trial and secure conviction.”
Naveen said a team of officers would visit other states to study the measures to improve the conviction rate. On the issue of marine police stations, Naveen blamed the Centre for not providing adequate funds for their construction.
Expressing dissatisfaction on Naveen’s reply, the Opposition walked out. There was trouble again when Speaker Pradeep Amat announced that the House would go for valediction. Taking exception to the announcement, the Opposition staged a walkout again.