Report by Priyabrata Nayak; Bhubaneswar: Odisha cadre senior Indian Forest Service officer Surendra Prasad mohapatra on Tuesday granted bail by a local court in Pennsylvania of United States. Court has instructed Mohapatra to appear physically before it on 1st of August for first hearing of the case.
On July 24 he was detained by Pennsylvania police and charged with indecent assault after a lady hotel worker complained against him. Mohapatra was produced before the court, which set a bail bond of 35,000 US dollars. After released Mohapatra denied the charges leveled against him. From the court he came to Pennsylvania’s Matamoras City where he visited officials at the Indian Consulate today.
India’s ambassador Nirupama rao who was in the city to attain a program, only said now the matter is being investigated by the police, I cant comment on it. Sources said, as Mohapatra did not travelling on a diplomatic passport, he is unlikely to any diplomatic assistance.
Officials at the consulate have been in constant touch with Mohapatra ever since the police in Pennsylvania’s Matamoras town arrested him on July 24. Mohapatra, who is said to be a 1985-batch IFS officer, was part of a group of 30 Indian officers visiting the US for a mid-career training programme at the Syracuse University in New York.
This incident reportedly took place on 24th July, when Mohapatra in his hotel room found a problem in Internet. A lady staff came to his room but was unable to fix it and left the room. Then about two hours later police turned up and arrested Mohapatra after the lady staff filed a complaint against him. Mohapatra now posted as the regional chief conservator of forests at Sambalpur in Odisha.