Kendrapara, April 4: A dead man has been served notice to appear before the authorities and give a written undertaking not to breach law and order in his locality during the election process.
Banambar Mallick of Nikirai, who was facing trial in a petty offence, died two years ago in a road mishap. But a notice has been sent to his house asking him to produce himself before the executive magistrate. He has been directed to submit a written undertaking not to breach peace in the area.
The notice was served to the dead on a report from the local police station. Under Section 107 of CrPC, the police take preventive measures to maintain law and order.
According to the provision, any person who is likely to commit a breach of the peace or disturb the public tranquillity would have to give in writing to refrain from breach of law.
The sitting chairman and a former chairman of the Kendrapara urban local body, 10 municipal councillors and a few lawyers are also among the recipients of such notices.
Kendrapara Municipality chairman Dhirendra Kumar Sahu said: “I have received the notice. I am not a troublemaker. Some of the sitting councillors, too, have been served the notice.”
Eighty-year-old Nrusingha Charan Panda, a retired government schoolteacher of Kendrapara, faces the ignominy of being one of the notice recipients.
“They have made a mockery of the law. I am in the twilight of my life. I am virtually confined indoors due to my age. The law-enforcing agencies have branded me as a troublemaker. How could they do this?” Panda rued.
Kendrapara District Bar Association president Dhruba Charan Jena took strong exception to the manner in which law-abiding citizen have been branded as possible law-breakers. “Respectable lawyers were served notice. We have drawn the attention of the district election office and the superintendent of police,” he said.
Low-ranking police personnel are usually given the duty of serving the notices. Irresponsibility on their part led to the discrepancies.
Kendrapara superintendent of police Rabi Narayan Behera admitted that there had been discrepancies while issuing notices. “These are being set right,” he added.