Dhenkanal: A defeat can change a person’s persona. This is evident from an incident in Dhenkanal, wherein a person set afire 29 houses belonging to Scheduled Caste, following his defeat in the ongoing Panchayat polls who was contesting for the post of Sarpanch.

This incident took place in the Dalit sahi of the village, Kamdhenukote of Dhenkanal district after Sarpanch candidate Pratap Swain was defeated from his rival Manorama Pradhan.

Apart from setting fire many trees were also cut down and poison was also mixed in a pond. The villagers were also beaten up by the supporters of Pratap. Many villagers left the village following the disaster. Police forces were also deployed in the area where the incident occurred.

The first phase election was held in many parts of the State on Saturday. Dhirapatna panchayat was involved in the first phase elections where Pratap Swain and Manorama Puhan were contesting for the Sarpanch post. Pratap Swain was defeated by 24 votes.

While as many as five complaints have been registered against Pratap he has been absconding from the village after the incident.

“Relief and cooked food has been arranged for 3 days by the Government”, said Deputy Collector, Babaji Charan Das.