Odisha: Pharmacist suspended for clicking pictures with President’s helicopter

Bhubaneswar: The incident had taken place on May 5 when the President had gone to Similipal National Park

BY | Monday, 8 May, 2023
President of India at Similipal National Park, Baripada district, Odisha on 5 May (PIB)

Even as the row over the power disruption at President Droupadi Murmu’s program in Odisha’s Baripada continues, the Chief District Medical Officer (CDMO) of Mayurbhanj has suspended a pharmacist for taking photos with the President’s helicopter, an official said on Monday.

CDMO Dr Rupabhanu Mishra suspended pharmacist Jashobanta Behera for clicking pictures with the President’s chopper and posting them on Facebook, the official said.

Behera was deployed in a medical team of the President during her visit to Similipal National Park on May 5.

“I posted a few photos on my Facebook account only for the sake of memory and fun. I had no other intention of doing so. However, I took verbal permission from some air force personnel engaged to guard the helicopter. As such a great personality like the President Madam had come to the district and I was on duty at the helipad, I wanted to keep the photos as a memory,” the pharmacist said.

He claimed that he has deleted the pictures from his Facebook account.

The incident had taken place on May 5 when the President had gone to Similipal National Park in the district on her second day of the tour.

The photographs were taken on mobile phones near the helicopter.

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Meanwhile, the issue relating to power disruption at the President’s program at the Maharaja Sriramachandra Bhanja Deo University convocation has taken a political row with the opposition BJP demanding an apology from the chief minister for keeping the first citizen of the country in darkness for about nine minutes while she was delivering the convocation address.

Union Minister of State for Jal Shakti and Tribal Affairs Bisheswar Tudu has demanded the immediate dismissal of Mayurbhanj District Collector and university vice-chancellor over the matter.

The Mayurbhanj district unit of BJP has also slammed the state government over power disruption at the President’s program. The opposition party has also demanded a high-level inquiry into the matter. The BJP also suspect sabotage to insult the President.

In a related development, Bhanja Sena, a local outfit in Mayurbhanj district said it would not hesitate to organise a bandh if actions were not taken against the persons responsible for power disruption at the President’s meeting.

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