STYMIEING OF NUKE DEAL A VICTORY OF THE LEFT; LET PARLIAMENT HAVE THE VICTORY TOO

Subhas Chandra Pattanayak

In a principled battle against pushing India into the hegemony of USA under the cover of the controversial 123 Agreement, the Left parties have succeeded in stymieing the nuclear deal, which, according to Senator Joe Lieberman “is so clearly in the interests of the United States” and in estimation of Reuters, is a “bonanza for U.S. Firms”; but according to Prme Minister of India, Dr. Man Mohan Singh is “signed, sealed and is non-negotiable”.

That the Indian National Congress has agreed with the Left that the Agreement should be reviewed and vetted by a joint committee is enough indication of the fact that good sense prevailing the Congress has refused to accept the Prime Minister’s version that the nuke deal with USA has been “signed, sealed and is non-negotiable”. It has also shown that it has distanced itself from the Prime Minister’s assertions that it is “not possible to renegotiate the deal” and the Left may “do whatever they want to do, if they want to withdraw support, so be it”.

After tormenting the entire country and using electronic media to pop up stage-managed ‘opinion polls’ speculating more resolute victory for Congress and defeat for the denigrators of the nuke deal, the Left and the BJP in the elections if withdrawal of support by the Left results in resignation of the Government necessitating a mid-term poll, Prime Minister Man Mohan Singh has now agreed to act according to the “finding” of the joint party committee. Accordingly a statement has been issued yesterday by the Central Government that says, “The operationalisation of the nuclear deal will take into account the committee’s findings”.

So, it is a victory for the left. And the Left deserves gratitude of the nation for having blocked a fraud that was all set to be played on our people.

But this victory is not the victory of the people of India. Victory of our people lies in the victory of our Parliament. We have a Prime Minister that denies this victory to our Parliament. In the entire matter of nuclear deal, he has left our Parliament with only one option; i.e. to acquiesce into the agreement he has “signed and sealed”. In other words, he wants our Parliament to be a passive partner in running of our democracy in autocratic manners. So, even if the deal fetches support of the Left after being vetted by the joint committee, the Parliament would stand defeated if it will not be allowed to decide the fate of the said deal through votes.

It would be a blatant wrong to accept that executive powers vested in a Government grant it a carte blanche to make the Parliament a passive witness to its acts. Democracy entails that the Government must be answerable to Parliament. If any deal entered to upon by the Government under executive powers remains above controlling powers of the Parliament, democracy would be defeated. So, in the instant case, the Parliament should first disapprove the Prime Minister’s assertions that the nuke deal is “signed, sealed and is non-negotiable”. This assertion reveals a disposition that is anti-democracy in nature and it would be a defeat of our Parliament if this statement of the Prime Minister is not condemned.

Will the Leader of Opposition in the Lok Sabha, who is exploiting the situation to convince USA that neither he nor his party appreciate anti-Americanism, now act as the conscience-keeper of this country – as a Leader of Opposition in a democracy is supposed to be – and goad the issue into a deliberation on answerability of the Government to the Parliament, so that a principled decision of the House could be arrived at to ensure that no decision having global impact on future generations of India, as is the present nuclear deal, could be taken by any Government without prior approval of the Parliament?

If such a decision could be taken, that would be the victory of our people, our Parliament.

Otherwise, despite the instant Left victory, we, as a democracy, will stand defeated.

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THE CORRUPT GOVERNMENT HAS FINALLY PUSHED PEOPLE INTO CHOLERA

Subhas Chandra Pattanayak

Continuous slow-starvation has finally culminated in cholera that has by this time taken a toll of around two hundred lives in the KBK region, where the government run by Naveen Patnaik, is more engaged in spreading his father Biju’s name in the guise of Biju KBK Plan than implementing poverty amelioration programs like the National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (NREGS).

The people have been perishing to such extent under this misrule that some of them have even tried to thrive on a specific type of stone called Jhikiri. We have discussed in these pages how the government has tried to hush up the sordid news of stone eating and how reporters have been prosecuted under charges of sedition for having brought to light this appalling condition.

More appalling is the unrelenting apathy of administration. We had cited reports of the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) and the interim report of the Centre for Environment and Food Security (CEFS) to show how the funds allocated to provide food security were being looted away by people in power and commission-agents and how the NREGS was being hijacked by corrupt officers.

In its interim report, the CEFS had observed,

“hunger and abject poverty is wide spread in all the 100 villages of KBK region we visited. Our interactions and interviews with villagers suggest that about 99% of the Adivasis and Dalits living in KBK villages are suffering from chronic hunger and malnutrition. Large numbers of children in these villages are suffering from severe malnutrition. Hunger and abject poverty is so apparent and writ large on the hollowed cheeks, sunken eyes, distended bellies of children, skeleton figures, listlessness and despair in their looks”, that the scenario looks “worse than Sub-Saharan Africa”.

The CAG had reported,

“Govt. of India (GoI) launched the Food for Work Programme during 2002 with a view to augmenting food security through wage employment. The scheme provided for supply of 5 kg of rice per day at subsidized rate of Rs.5.65 per kg and payment of balance wages in cash. To ensure that the benefit of subsidy reached the labourer and as a safe guard against the sale of rice at higher rate in the market, the scheme stipulated that rice should be supplied to the labourers at the work site along with cash component on muster rolls in presence of the local representatives.

“However, 8 EEs issued 4057 tonnes of rice to contractors after completion of works executed through 1092 agreements between 2001-02 and 2004-05. The delays ranged between 7 days and 18 months. Since distribution of rice to daily wage workers after completion of the works was not practicable, the subsidy of Rs.2.06 crore provided by GoI was not passed on to the labours and instead led to undue benefit to the contractors”.

Government did not bother.

The longest time chief of KBK Plan, who should have been punished for blatant misappropriation of KBK funds compelling people to distress sale paddy, to distress sale body, to distress sale babies and finally to migrate into neighboring states in search of bread, has been rewarded with the post of Chief secretary by Naveen Patnaik. No responsibility has been fixed and no functionary is punished for misappropriation and malfeasances, such is the character of this administration.

In its final report on the performance of NREGA in Orissa, the CEFS has established that 75 % of the funds has been looted by government officials. In a press release on August 17, it has sated, “The findings of a survey conducted in 100 villages of Orissa’s 6 districts have revealed that out of Rs 733 crore spent under NREGA (National Rural Employment Guarantee Act) in Orissa during 2006-7, more than 500 crore has been siphoned and misappropriated by the government officials of implementing agencies. In other words, less than 25 per cent of the NREGS funds have reached the targeted population and more than 75 per cent have been eaten up by sarkari babus. There are thousands of villages in Orissa where more than 80-90 percent of NREGS funds have been misappropriated by the executing officials”.

The CEFS report entirely available in its official website has been elaborately covered by the national as well as Orissa’s regional media. But the administration is so recalcitrant that it has kept its eyes close to these reports.

Under such an apathetic administration, the people of KBK region, mostly the landless tribal people and the marginal farmers, sans necessary food and sans drinking water, have been suffering from slow starvation for years.

Slow starvation has severely affected their immunity and aggravated stomach problem that has now culminated in cholera.

ALLIES OF THE CONGRESS SHOULD DISSOCIATE

Subhas Chandra Pattanayak

Chandrababu Naidu was an effective Chief Minister. But the people of Andhra Pradesh dismissed him because he could not dissociate his party from BJP when pro-rich policies of Vajpayee were playing havoc with the lives of workers, farmers and consumers.

Congress allies should learn the lesion from this.

If survival in power is their aim, they should persuade the Prime Minister that the nuke agreement with USA should be discarded as it pushes us into American hegemony or be kept in abeyance till at least the Parliament votes in its favor. If he remains adamant in imposing it on our nation, they should immediately dissociate from the Congress in order not to become neo Naidus.

This deal seems like a fraud played on our people.

Dr. Singh insists that it is in our interest.

But, according to an eminent Senator of the United States, it is in interest of USA.

CLEARLY IN INTEREST OF THE USA

Reuters, on August 12, quoted Senator Joe Lieberman, a political heavyweight of America, known for his role in policy making and proximity to President Bush, to have emphasized that the deal will get support of both the Houses of USA Congress because “it is so clearly in the interests of the United States”.

“For U.S. nuclear firms, it opens up the Indian market, estimated to be worth $100 billion”, says Reuters in another report on August 25, sub-captioning this phenomenon as a “bonanza for U.S. Firms”.

Now, therefore, it is clear that the nuke deal, which is held as a “bonanza for U.S.Firms” and is designed “so clearly in the interests of United States” has been “signed” behind our back by Dr. Singh, who has misused his position to make it “sealed” and “non-negotiable” at American behest.

In a democracy, where peoples are collectively supreme, a Prime Minister cannot assume autocratic powers to bind all the peoples and their country to a foreign power by signing a deal that would be “non-negotiable” for all time to come.

When Dr. Singh says that the deal is “non-negotiable”, because it is “signed” and “sealed” under executive powers vested in his government, he inadvertently admits that before signing the agreement he had decided to use the executive powers clause, as and when necessary, to escape, if people of India do not want to accept American hegemony in any form under any mischief of this deal. Such a modus operandi does not vouch either for integrity on part of the government or for national interest of India.

NO CARTE BLANCHE

Executive powers contemplated under the Constitution of India neither grant the government any immunity from answerability to the House of the Peoples nor strengthen it with any carte blanche to act above the Parliament.

So the Prime Minister cannot be allowed to have the luxury of using the executive powers vested in him to make a deal “non-negotiable” when that deal is vitiated with scope to subject our country to the hegemony of a foreign power.

A responsible government manned by selfless leaders of our people should first have placed every details of this deal before the general public, explaining all the prospects and consequences thereof, so that the nation could have arrived at a conscientious decision in this matter. This was the bare minimum necessity as the deal deals with dangerous nuclear materials and has designs that portend serious debacles notwithstanding the governmental projection of benefits.

SERIOUS DEBACLES AHEAD

“Many of the risks associated with civil nuclear power are well known”. This is said by the Oxford Research Group (ORG) in a study captioned with a poser: “Too Hot to Handle?” wherein it says, “The two current proposals to reduce the risk that a global expansion of nuclear power poses for nuclear weapon proliferation and nuclear terrorism, the Global Nuclear Energy Partnership and the Nuclear Fuel Bank both have serious shortcomings. GNEP requires spent-fuel reprocessing and the use of Fast Feeder Reactors (FBR). Both have been shown to be commercial disasters. In addition, FBRs have proved to be very unreliable, uneconomical, and unsafe“.

This expert observation in juxtaposition with Dr. Singh’s assertions seems more convincing and it portends serious debacles if the 123 Agreement is executed.

The 123 Agreement provides for “transfer of nuclear material, non-nuclear material, equipment, components and information through authorized persons” whereas it has defined a person as “any individual or any entity subject to the territorial jurisdiction of either party but does not include the parties”.

It is pertinent to note that the ORG Report (cited supra) is prepared “On The Future of Civil Nuclear Power” and authored by Frank Barnaby and James Kemp. With a foreword by the Liberal Democrat Shadow Energy Spokesperson and MP David Howarth, it has concluded that the “current national and international safeguards systems cannot monitor the movement of nuclear materials through reprocessing and enrichment plants sufficiently adequately to ensure that the diversion of nuclear materials from civil to military use will not occur. In short, the plutonium economy will inevitably increase the risk that the capability to fabricate nuclear weapons will spread and that fissile materials will be used by terrorists to make nuclear explosives“.

Against this backdrop, India entering into a “non-negotiable” agreement with USA that a private person or entity subject to territorial jurisdiction of that country (ensured by the phrase: either party) can be used for “transfer of nuclear material” including “non-nuclear materials, equipment, components and information” is bound to be disastrous for our Motherland.

When Congress leaders of India, beginning from Arjun Singh to Rajiv Gandhi, in their the then capacities helped Anderson to escape Indian Laws after the Bhopal Gas tragedy and we have not yet been able to punish the culprits and fetch justice for the victims of the genocide that Union Carbide had perpetrated on our people by way of testing the killer effect of a non-nuclear gas, what would happen to our country if a private “person or entity” belonging to USA jurisdiction, but authorized to “transfer nuclear materials, non-nuclear materials, equipment, components and information” to our land resorts to subterfuge and allows, as observed in the ORG report, “diversion of nuclear materials from civil to military use” may be easily guessed.

Passive secularists being bedfellows of active communalists in India under the strange scheme of plutocratic miscegenation, the 123 Agreement has every mischief to generate a new environment of such “diversion” to suit the nefarious purposes of religious fundamentalists, who have emerged as the rulers of the roost, as witnessed in the assault on Taslima in Andhara Pradesh in a passive secularist Congress regime or in making a College Principal march naked on the streets in Madhya Pradesh in the active communalists BJP regime.

HIDDEN DANGER FROM THE HYDE ACT

Such techno-hazards apart, concern of the Left Parties on subjection of India to USA hegemony through the nuke deal deserves serious attention. It is better to quote their statement, where they have stressed on the mischief of the USA, hidden under the Hyde Act, irrevocably under which the deal is to be operated.

I quote:

Serious concern had been expressed by the Left Parties about various conditions inserted into the Hyde Act passed by the US Congress. A number of them pertain to areas outside nuclear co-operation and are attempts to coerce India to accept the strategic goals of the United States. These issues are:
Annual certification and reporting to the US Congress by the President on a variety of foreign policy issues such as India’s foreign policy being ‘congruent to that of the United States and more specifically India joining US efforts in isolating and even sanctioning Iran [Section 104g(2) E(i)]
Indian participation and formal declaration of support for the US’ highly controversial Proliferation Security Initiative including the illegal policy of interdiction of vessels in international waters [Section 104g(2) K]
India conforming to various bilateral/multilateral agreements to which India is not currently a signatory such as the US’ Missile Technology Control Regime (MTCR), the Australia Group etc [Section 104c E,F,G]

All of these are a part of the Hyde Act. The 123 Agreement refers only to the narrow question of supply of nuclear materials and co-operation on nuclear matters. The provisions of the Hyde Act are far wider than the 123 agreement and could be used to terminate the 123 agreement not only in the eventuality of a nuclear test but also for India not conforming to the US foreign policy. The termination clause is wide ranging and does not limit itself to only violation of the agreement as a basis for cessation or termination of the contract. Therefore, these extraneous provisions of the Hyde Act could be used in the future to terminate the 123 Agreement. In such an eventuality, India would be back to complete nuclear isolation, while accepting IAEA safeguards in perpetuity. Therefore, the argument that provisions of the Hyde Act do not matter and only 123 clauses do, are misplaced”.

MEDIA MISCHIEF

It is a misfortune for our country that the mainstream media has abandoned its responsibility to educate people on such alarming aspect of the nuke deal. It is more alarming that the national broadsheets and TV channels are trying to project the deal as a must for India’s betterment through misconstrued opinion polls.

During the Vajpayee days Media had been playing this trick of opinion polls. But our people rejected Vajpayee when the real poll-time came. And, also rejected his allies.

The present allies of Congress should therefore be cautious.

FOUL PLAY OF PLUTOCRACY

Dr. Singh was never the choice of India for the post of Prime Minister. He grabbed this post behind the curtain of a political confusion to which the agents of plutocracy had dragged the Congress into at a time when the peoples of India were eager to save their Motherland from active communalists, the stooges of hoarders, blackmarketeers and adulterators.

He is the father of the sin that has derailed Indian Resolution for Socialism enshrined in the Preamble of our Constitution.

Had it been possible on part of Narasimha Rao and his curs in the cabinet, the Resolution for Socialism enshrined in the Preamble of our Constitution could have been dropped. But it being impossible to change the Preamble, Singh as Finance Minister had resorted to a method of subterfuge and had subjected India to GATT behind back of our people and had paved the path for plutocracy to replace whatever semblance of democracy we till then had consequent upon which mega scams engulfed our country.

Shocked to the core our people had to reject the Congress; but blind in rage, they rushed into the trap of another masquerade of plutocracy, Vajpayee.

But no sooner Vajpayee took over than he shed the mask down and our national industries, one after the other, started being sold away to private profiteers under the guise of ‘economic reform’ that Man Mohan Singh had initiated by binding us to GATT.

In this continued regime of ‘free economy’ ushered in by Dr. Singh, the country was freely plundered by whoever had a politico-administrative clout.

Vajpayee’s blue-eyed boy Pramod Mahajan may be cited as an example. He was a son of a low-salaried schoolteacher. But the magic of ‘free economy’ had made him a multi-billionaire when Vajpayee was in power. While spreading saffron, he lived a five star life. He was a role model of all that Vajpayee and BJP stood for. He could invest many crores of Rupees for well-being of his younger brothers but had ultimately to succumb to bullets from his youngest brother’s gun, the crux of the quarrel between the brothers admittedly being his 2000-crore of Rupees worth black money empire!

From this empire, the slogan of “India shining” had emanated. People had seen enough of this shining. They refused a fresh mandate to Vajpayee.

WHO WAS REALLY REJECTED?

In rejecting Vajpayee whom had our people really rejected?

They had rejected Dr. Man Mohan Singh. They had rejected the economic policy he had clamped on our people that Vajpayee had continued.

So, Dr. Singh was not the legitimate choice of India for the post of Prime Minister.

As he had fathered the economic policy that best served the purposes of BJP, it had come to his aid by whipping up a controversy on Sonia Gandhi’s nationality, probably by being instigated by Singh himself.

Many strange things happen in politics and every strange thing does not come to light always. It cannot be forgotten that strange was the way Dr. Singh got imposed on us as our Prime Minister.

MISCHIEF INVIGORATED

Ever since he has become the Prime Minister, he has invented newer methods to invigorate plutocracy. Helping monopoly trade to spread and allowing imperial houses to establish their own dominions on the soil of our sovereign land in the guise of SEZ is one such method.

The list is vast. But relevant to the subject in hand is his anti-democracy disposition.
“Signed, sealed and non-negotiable”. This is how he has responded to a just demand for keeping the agreement in abeyance till the people are fully apprised of the deal.

A deal, which, in the opinion of American Senator Joe Lieberman, “is so clearly in the interest of the United States”, cannot be equally clearly in interest if India. Difference is bound to be there. Our people have a right to know the quantum of this difference. And till we know of this, it is justified to say that the agreement should be kept in abeyance.

On the other hand, this is a deal, which, in the opinion of experts at ORG is not a sure safeguard against “diversion of nuclear materials from civil to military use”. This is a deal, which is “a bonanza to U.S.Firms” as it “opens up Indian market, estimated to be worth $100 billion” to private traders of America to trade in nuclear materials in our country subject to USA jurisdiction.

Juxtaposed with ORG observations on possibility of diversion of nuclear materials from civil to military use, the role allowed to private persons in the deal needs assessment by our people specifically as we are affected by ever-rising religio-militancy. Till then the agreement must be kept in abeyance.

Nuclear power generation, as per expert opinion hinted to supra, is most expensive and unreliable. How far this is correct needs to be assessed. And till then the agreement must be kept in abeyance.

The Hyde Act of America, as apprehended by seasoned and responsible politicians, is detrimental to Indian interest. The nuke deal being dependant on this particular American Law, how far making the agreement operational would safeguard Indian interest needs to be studied in depth. Till then its execution must not be allowed.

So the demand of the Left parties is right. It is wrong on part of Dr. Singh to impose this deal on us before we are apprised of every aspect of the deal.

But the USA is in a hurry. To help its traders and to provide a “bonanza to U.S.Firms” in the eve of election, Bush administration wants that Government of India proceed ahead with its execution.

If the Communists withdraw their support, “would Washington pursue the deal with a minority government whose parliamentary legitimacy could be in question?” journalists in USA were wondering. “Yes, said a U.S. congressional aide who asked not to be named”, reports Reuters on August 25.

The reputed Agency cites him to have clarified that the “desire to act on the agreement — before a new government took power in New Delhi, which might well seek changes to the deal — was likely to overcome misgivings about the weakness of a government without a majority”.

So, the USA shall sure press upon Dr. Man Mohan Singh to go ahead with the deal in order to please American Firms to whom it is a “bonanza” in the eve of election.

And, given his disposition, Dr. Singh is likely to proceed with the deal in order to please the Americans.

Then it would be a sure misuse of executive powers. It would be an instance of administrative breech of trust resorted to by a government against its own people. People may not be able to stop it but they shall sure stop this government from getting reelected.

Allies of the Congress, take care.

DR. ASOKA MISRA FELICITATED AS THE BEST SCIENTIST

The Rajiv Gandhi Forum has felicitated Dr. Asoka Misra, eminent techno-academician, with The Best Scientist-2007 Award in a special function held in the IDCOL Auditorium at Bhubaneswar in the evening of August 20 marking the 63rd birth anniversary of the late Prime Minister of India.

Dr. Misra is the inventor and founder of Misra Technique that has revolutionized the world of science with the safest process of application of electric power in transformation of character of a medium in ever-newer avenues beginning from instrumental lenses to human limbs to the benefit of society. His technique has filled up a gap on the way of innovations that the scientists of the world had long been in dire need. Patented in USA, his invention has been referred to in various subsequent patents.

Dr. Ratnakar Pandey, a close associate of Rajiv Gandhi during his lifetime had joined the function as the Chief Guest and felicitated Dr. Mishra in the packed-to-the-capacity hall.

Formerly a member of the faculty at IIT,Kharagpur, Prof. Misra has enriched many techno- institutes of Orissa with his expertise as an academic-administrator after returning home from USA and is presently the Principal of N.M.Institute of Engineering & Technology, Bhubaneswar.

“YOUR INDIA IS GREAT, BUT MY BHARAT IS IN TROUBLE”

Subhas Chandra Pattanayak

In the eve of Independence Day, a friend of mine, Prof. Mrinal Chatterjee, has sent me a panicle of data, one of which is, “Tera India Mahan, Mera Bharat Pareshan” that he has “seen scrawled at the back of a truck”. He has roughly translated it as “Your India is great, but my Bharat is in trouble”.

Dear Prime Minister Man Mohan Singh, while unfurling the National Flag on the day of our independence, can you understand, what does this data cry to communicate?

It cascades down from the trolley of a truck probably owned by the working-for-survival driver himself; because it can never belong to “Your India” group.

Today being the Independence Day, and accidentally you being the Prime Minister, please try, if you can, to understand what does it convey. It conveys the feeling of the tortured citizens of this betrayed Country in its entirety.

Elected by our people the Congress has imposed you on us as our Prime Minister. And, accepted by our people as Prime Minister, you have managed the Country with such precision that it has been clearly cut into two parts in commons’ perception: “Your Great India” and “My Troubled Bharat”. The partition that religious fanatics had precipitated in 1947 was geographical; the partition you have precipitated is mental.

Try to understand in what sobs one must have been drowned while groping about words to coin the cry: “Tera India Mahan, mera Bharat Pareshan”.

You are our Prime Minister. Don’t make Prime Minister of India a stooge of US of America.

You have bound us with US of America in a nuclear deal without approval of our Parliament and you reiterate, the agreement “is signed, sealed and non-negotiable”. Who are you, elected indirectly for a limited period, to sign, behind back of our people, a deal, that you say, is “non negotiable” for all time to come? Have you shown the minimum curtsey befitting a representative to make us people of this Country, your Masters, know, what agreement you were to sign with a foreign Country, before making it “signed, sealed and non negotiable”? Who is your Masters: we Indians or those Americans? You must explain your position.

You could not have been the Prime Minister had the Communists not given you their support. Had you not been the Prime Minister, could you have signed the “non-negotiable” nuclear deal with the USA? When you owe your existence in the Prime Minister post to the Communists, was it not your duty to show them details of the deal before signing the agreement? Now when they raise their objection, you use mass media to challenge them “to do whatever they want to do” and assert, “if they want to withdraw support, so be it”! Is it becoming of a Prime Minister of India, Mr. Singh? Is it political curtsey?

A day ago, in the Lok Sabha, you have made specific mention on your speech of 17th August 2006 in the Rajya Sabha to show us how transparently you have placed before the Parliament details of the deal. I studied your speech. You have not stated anywhere that you have placed before the Parliament the draft of the agreement for the people to see how far was it acceptable. Sitaram Yechury, frontbencher of Communist bloc on whose support you thrive in power, had wanted to know, “whether it is a nuclear deal or a deal concerning civilian nuclear cooperation”. He would never have posed this question had the text of the draft agreement been placed before the House.

Mark his speech. He says, after this aspect is known, the question as to “whether we are being treated as a nuclear weapon State or not being treated as a nuclear weapon State” would arise.

“Do we have the same rights and benefits as the Prime Minister has said?” he wondered and proceeded to say, “if this whole issue is about civilian nuclear cooperation and if it is meant to augment India’s nuclear energy, then I would actually like to know whether any study has been done on the basis of which you are moving towards this option of augmenting India’s nuclear energy. Has the Atomic Energy Commission ever discussed this entire issue?

“The Atomic Energy Commission is also under the Prime Minister. At least, the country does not know and the Parliament does not know what their opinion on this entire nuclear deal is and whether such augmentation is feasible or possible”.

Dear Prime Minister, it is clear from the above that you had not placed the text of the draft agreement before the Parliament for perusal, for analysis, for proper information of the Representatives of the people.

You have stated that the deal will benefit India. This statement of yours has made a few Americans oppose the deal in USA. But making the position clear, Senator Joe Lieberman, known for his proximity to President Bush, has said: “There will be debate, there will be some dissent. In the end, it will be accepted and endorsed by strong majority in both houses of Congress because it is so clearly in the interests of the United States”. (Reuters, August 14, 2007)

So in USA voice, the Agreement you have signed “is so clearly in the interests of United States”.

Why have you done this Mr. Prime Minister? Why are you asking us to accept that the deal is in our interest when it “is so clearly in the interest of United States”?

At least, at this stage, tell us, who initiated this deal? You in your Cabinet or the United States? Please place the documents before the public so that we can know as to whether or not you are influenced by USA to sign and seal the “non-negotiable” agreement of the deal.

“Global Nuclear Energy Partnership and the Nuclear Fuel Bank both have serious shortcomings. GNEP requires spent-fuel reprocessing and the use of fast breeder reactors. Both have been shown to be commercial disasters. In addition, FBRs have proved to be very unreliable, uneconomical, and unsafe” concludes Oxford Research Group, under a caption “Too hot to handle?”

Please go deep into this report.

According to you, “primary motivation for India’s nuclear programme was the production of energy, defense came much later”. And, you have said, “Prudence demands that we must widen our energy options”. Though you have admitted that nuclear energy may not provide the final answer, to you, “all development is about widening human choices. And, when it comes to energy security, widening our choices means that we should be able to make effective use of nuclear power”. You are not alone in peddling such a plea. Every country that accepts USA hegemony has been marshalling pleas similar to yours.

In reacting to such a plea, the ORG has warned the British Government, “If a decision to go with nuclear power is taken then the UK will implement a flawed and dangerously counter-productive energy policy – one from which the blowback may be a lot worse than higher heating bills”.

So, Mr. Prime Minister, please think afresh.

“When future generations look back, they will come to acknowledge the significance of this historic deal”, you have told the House yesterday.

You had told the same thing when, as finance minister under Narasimha Rao, you had subjected us to USA propelled GATT in order to render our National Resolution to make India a Socialist Republic inconsequential. You had done that in a way of subterfuge because Narasimha Rao government was not in a position to obliterate this Resolution from the Preamble of the Constitution through an amendment. And, India’s resolve to become a Socialist Republic was not suitable to USA. This subterfuge you have branded as an act of economic reform!

As Prime Minister you have asserted that India has been shining because of the economic reform you had brought in and as then you had said, you say now that “future generations will acknowledge the significance of this historic deal”.

I do not know what the future generations shall say; but to my generation, your so-called reform has divided us so brutally that majority is unable to stop saying, “Tera India Mahan, Mera Bharat Pareshan”.

Take note Mr. Prime Minister, this divide is your contribution.

While unfurling the National Flag, please think of correcting the wrong you have committed. Allow vote on the Nuke Agreement. Allow majority opinion to prevail. Do not ask the Parliament to approve “signed, sealed and non-negotiable” an Agreement with USA. That would be sheer insubordination to Parliament. No proud citizen of this Country would cherish it.

You may gain back the support of the Communists and succeed in making your position solid as you assert. But note, people have started looking at you askance and be sure, if you succeed in obtaining post-facto approval of the Agreement with USA that you have “signed” and made “sealed and non-negotiable”, that shall never help you gain back people’s confidence.

So be honest in real sense. Place everything before the people, as according to the American Senator cited supra, the Agreement “is so clearly in the interests of the United States”.

Ask the people for their fully informed opinion on the deal and act accordingly.

Don’t impose anything, which is admittedly “clearly in the interests of the United States” on our people by shouting that it in our interest. Act as our Prime Minister; do not act as a promoter of American interest.

Correct yourself in such a way that nobody will like to say, “Tera India Mahan, Mera Bharat Pareshan”.

CULTURE-VULTURES CONVERT OFFICIAL SARALA MAHABHARATA TO THEIR OWN BENEFIT

FORMER CHIEF SECREATRY SAHADEV SAHOO COMMITS THE CRIME WITH PADMASHREE-FETCHER PRATIBHA ROY AS ABETTOR

Subhas Chandra Pattanayak

As earlier reported, some of Orissas I.A.S. officers are so corrupt in character that they are furtively converting the State Governments commercial publications in culture sector to their own benefit, the latest being former Chief secretary Sahadev Sahoos conduct in the matter of Sarala Mahabharata.

The epic Mahabharat, authored originally in Sanskrit by Vyasa Dev as a literature of his philosophy of class war in ancient times, was subsequently tampered with by caste-supremacists through interpolations in order to divest it of its core purpose of eliminating exploitation of the weaker section and women.

Sarala Das had studied the text as was then available and interpreted its innumerable episodes in sociological perspective and reproduced the epic in Orissas spoken tongue with utmost regard to what might have been Vyasas original purpose, spangling the same with many new episodes corresponding to Orissa of his time in a manner that made the great epic a referral point in every Oriya village. Thus being able to know the philosophy of deathlessness of life that warriors enjoy, as propounded by Vyasa in the mouth of Sri Krshna, Oriya militia became one with the military of the State in protecting Orissa from Muslim invaders that had by that time engulfed India except Orissa.

By Sarala Das time, Oriya Nationality was fragmented into feudal nationalities glued to geographical limits under possession of 36 quarrelsome feudal Kings of Orissa as well as invader non-Oriya dynasties.

The Kings were fighting against each other to expand their respective territories and in the process patriotism of their subjects was linked to their feudal territories only. The feudal Kings were boastful of their lineage from the Aryas and had become patrons of Vedic hegemony.

Where there was no feudal King, the land there belonged to tribal democracies silently adherent to Buddhism and its offshoots and thus under no personal possession.

Taking advantage of this, Asok of Magadh had attacked the land of tribal democracies confederated under the banner of Kalinga at Tosala, the birthplace of Buddha; while maintaining friendship with the feudal Kings and since then, till emergence of Kapilendra Dev, every empire within the Oriya speaking tract, was established and run by non-Oriyas, who had tried every nasty method to eliminate Buddhism from its soil of origin, Orissa.

When Kharavela in post Asokan era, belonging to the non-Oriya Chedi clan, endeared to people of Kalinga as the vanquisher of Magadha, had tried to sidetrack Buddhism by ushering in its nearly similar philosophy of Jainism, Jayati II of non-Oriya Somavamsa had imported ten thousand non-Oriya Brahmins to impose Vedas on people beyond feudal territories of Orissa. A King of this dynasty recorded by Iswara Das as Keshari King, had tried to extinguish Buddhism from its soil of origin by annihilating 668 Buddhist Siddhas of the Kurmapatakapur belt. But his successors being a bit reluctant to continue prosecution of Buddhists, particularly the last emperor in the dynasty Karna Dev, his Brahmin Minister Basudev Rath had resorted to subterfuge and through him, another non-Oriya invader Choda Ganga had occupied Orissa and beheaded all the members of Somavamshi royal family in a coup detat the like of which had never happened in Orissa. Choda Ganga tried to convert Sri Jagannath from Buddha to Vishnu and his policy of prosecuting Buddhists had led his successor Anangabhima to behead 32 eminent preachers of Buddhism.

Thus, the geographical limits of Orissa, not occupied by feudatory Kings, were under occupation of non-Oriya anti-Buddhist Emperors since the days of Asoka. Hence there was no Oriya Nationalism in existence in the Oriya speaking tract. Nationalism in Orissan context was of many fragmentations linked to geographical limits ruled over by Kings and Emperors.

All these Kings and Emperors were in prosperity by perpetually exploiting the common people of Orissa in the name of Canons. The Canons were in Sanskrit, which the people of Orissa were not versed in. Described as Devabhasa (language of the Lords), Sanskrit was a language to be studied only by the upper caste Aryas and hence the common people of Orissa, basically non-Brahmins, tribal and self-employed agro-communities, were not even allowed to know and use this language. Hence the Kings and Emperors were using Sanskrit as the official language to keep their subjects suppressed forever in the guise of rule of Canons.

Over and above this insurmountable instrument of exploitation, a new threat was looming large. That was Arabic, the language of Muslims and Moguls, who, after occupying major parts of India, had set their eyes on Orissa.

Notwithstanding fragmentations under feudal impact, people of Orissa were spiritually nearer to each other because of Buddhism. Orissa being the birthplace of Buddha, and therefore, the fountainhead of Buddhism, agents of Vedic imperialism had concentrated for centuries here to goad away peoples from its fold by imposing Brahminic Canons written in alien language Sanskrit while keeping them debarred from acquiring knowledge in it. Through out the Oriya speaking land, there was Brahminic assault on Buddhists to which the people, fragmented on feudatory geographical basis, were unable to oppose and thus spiritual brotherhood of Oriyas was in the doldrums.

Pro-people thinkers amongst them were no more to remain silent onlookers.

A revolution was planned.

It was felt that active Buddhists having been annihilated and Vedic deities having spread even to remote parts intoxicating commons with scriptural provisions, fragmented Oriya Nationality may not be brought into one on spiritual basis. Hence Mother-tongue was the only platform where Oriyas solidarity could be developed. So the contemplated revolution was to proceed on two fronts: politico-military campaign against non-Oriya dynasties and spread of Mother-tongue impact with availability of scriptures in Oriya.

Accordingly, Kapilendra Dev led the revolution in politico-military front and Sarala Das set the tone in the Mother-tongue sector.

His Mahabharat written in colloquial Oriya quenched the spiritual thirst of the people by telling them in their own language the tale of Sri Krshna and all other heroes and heroines and Gods and Goddesses till then monopolized by the alien language Sanskrit.

And as expected, the entire Oriya speaking tract awoke, as if from a slumber, into the embrace of its beautiful Mother-tongue and Oriya Nationalism got instantly concentrated on the basis of language.

As noted supra, Orissa was divided into various parts under occupation of feudal Kings and non-Oriya dynasties and the people were known by their respective territorial nationalities as defined by their allegiance to their rulers. Hence there was no unity amongst the Oriyas and no Oriya Nationalism as such was possible to grow on geographical platform. By writing the Mahabharata in Mother-tongue of Oriyas, Sarala revived Oriya solidarity and strengthened the nationalistic revolution that helped Kapilendra extinguish non-Oriya rule over Orissa. Sarala had deliberately chosen the Mahabharata as in this particular epic deathlessness of life was depicted in matching justification of war of exploited against the exploiters. So, rightly it acted as the instrument of emancipation and supplemented the stratagem of Kapilendra to its success.

On being successful in extinguishing non-Oriya rule, Kapilendra decided to terminate caste apartheid as that was the main factor of weakening the Oriya race and thereby tactfully revived applied Buddhism.

He declared his creed to be that of Surya, synonym of Buddha by his clan name. And as Buddha was Jagannath, he declared Jagannath as the real owner of Orissa, while promulgating an order that beginning himself all the future Emperors of Orissa would officiate only as the Raut or Representative of Sri Jagannath.

As Surya (the Sun or Konarka Dev or Buddha by His clan name) is equally available to everybody irrespective of castes, under his rule that he established under a new dynastic banner in the name of Surya, every citizen would enjoy equal right and opportunity in spiritual and professional pursuits, he ensured. He issued injunctions that there shall be no caste consideration in partaking Prasad of Sri Jagannath and also in getting recruited to and/or promotions in the military as well as in any public service. In order to save the common people from the whips of Canons in Sanskrit, he promulgated Oriya as the official language and obliterated every obstacle between administration and the subjects.

With such a person as the Emperor, sans caste discrimination, the Oriya race became so united and strong that instead of waiting to defend its territory from Muslim invaders, it went on attacking and annexing Muslim ruled estates.

This strength came from complete defragmentation of Oriya Nationality, which was processed, notwithstanding presence of feudal States, under the surge of love for Mother-tongue that Sarala Das developed through his Mahabharata, wherein Sri Jagannath was time and again shown as Buddha himself. It is to be noted that ever since Sarala Mahabharata was authored, Oriya nationalism has never gone again into fragmentations.

Therefore, it may be safely said that Sarala Mahabharata is the fountainhead of Oriya nationalism.

But written originally in palm leaves and copied from palm leaf to palm leaf by Lekhankaras that were not necessarily versed in literature but only literate enough to engrave, on wages, the alphabets on palm leaves using a pointed iron shaft usable with three fingers called Lekhani, most of the words and verses of this mega work were corrupted rendering it incomprehensible in many places. Moreover palm leaf copies of this epic being centuries old in age, it was no more possible to preserve them and therefore, existence of this unique work was severely threatened. In fact most of the copies were moth-eaten and damaged. Moreover, there was severe dearth of people who could be able to read the manuscripts if any found in readable condition.

Worried over such a threat to this unique cultural heritage of Orissa, Prof. Artta Ballav Mohanty had single-mindedly dedicated four years of his scholarly life, that too after superannuating from government service, to revive this fountainhead of Oriya nationalism, without which, the people of modern Orissa would not have any access to its text, specifically as people able to read them had become almost extinct. He had collected 22 sets of manuscripts from different parts of Orissa; but had been able to find out only eleven persons, who were able to read those manuscripts.

That there were only eleven persons available to read the palm leaf manuscripts of Sarala Mahabharata at that time is enough to indicate what would have happened to this mega work of Sarala had Prof. Mohanty not revived it in time.

However, with these eleven persons reading the manuscripts page by page before him, Prof. Mohanty was philologically analyzing the read out lines, word by word and arriving at what could have been the original verse of Sarala.

Imagine how difficult must have been this exercise. Without sheer patriotism, without total commitment to ones Motherland and Mother-tongue, collection, correction and compilation of such a matchlessly mega but unmanageably dilapidated work, eight hundred years old in age, would never have been possible.

Prof. Mohanty not only edited the work restoring it to its original shape, but also, the words used by Sarala no more in use in modern Oriya, were provided with meanings in footnotes in every page.

Therefore, it can be aptly said that the Sarala Mahabharata edited by Prof. Mohanty is his intellectual property over which his legal heirs must have their inherited entitlement.

But Prof. Mohanty had handed over his work to the State Government of Orissa. And the Government, in the Department of Culture, had invested money from public exchequer and brought it out as a priced publication. Hence it is a commercial property of the State Government of Orissa.

Now, this commercial property of the State has been misappropriated by former Chief Secretary namely Sahadev Sahoo and his group of stooges including writer Pratibha Roy and converted to his and their benefit by bringing out a priced publication of the same under their banner: Sarala Sahitya Samsad.

Earlier, in these pages, I had exposed how Subas Pani, Chief Secretary of Orissa as then he was, had converted Srimad Bhagavat of Jagannath Das, the manuscripts of which were collected, corrected and edited by Pt. Nilamani Mishra and published commercially by the Orissa Sahitya Academy, to his own benefit through a hybrid organization of letters under Government control called the Odisha Bhasa Pratisthana. Pani of course had no eye on financial gain out of it. His sole purpose was to fetch the opportunity for spreading his own name across the world as the sole presenter of the literary marvel that has remained at top of popularity among Oriyas for last 500 years.

But culture vultures combined under the banner of Sarala Sahitya Samsad, a private trade house chaired by Sahadev Sahoo have converted a historically important public property to their commercial benefit by misappropriating and republishing Sarala Mahabharata, revived by Prof. Artta Ballav Mohanty, behind back of the State.

This is a crime against the State deliberately carried out by the former Chief Secretary Sahadev Sahoo along with a former Engineer Prabhakar Swain for their commercial profit. It is a shame that a Padmashree fetcher Prativa Roy has been an active abettor in this crime. She has not even thought it proper to acknowledge the contributions of Prof. Mohanty to survival of Sarala Mahabharata in the form that they have misappropriated. She has tried her mischievous best to obliterate the name of Prof. Mohanty and to say us that it is Sahadev Sahoo but for who the correct copy of Sarala Mahabharata would not have been available. Sri Sahadev Sahoos firmness and unwearied endeavor in this respect shall remain ever unforgettable, she has asserted. It is a shame that such a dishonest lady in matter of letters has been awarded with Padmashree for literature!

However, the crime against the State having thus been committed, it is imperative to prosecute the perpetrators of this crime in appropriate Court of Law. These perpetrators claim that former Chief Justice of India Ranganath Mishra is their advisor. If it is true, he should clarify as to whether this crime has been committed under his advice. If it is committed without his advice or in contravention of his advice, he should immediately disassociate himself from this combine of culture vultures. More important than the judicial top post he had once held, to us, is his identity as the son of Pt. Gadavarish Mishra, who personified probity in public life, honesty in personal life and sacrifice for the Motherland. His bright memory should not be eclipsed by any bad act of his son.

Pending prosecution, all the volumes of Sarala Mahabharata as presented by Sahadev Sahoo and published by the Sarala Sahitya Samsad should be banned and confiscated by the State Government without loss of time. Anarchy in Orissan culture cannot be countenanced even though politico-administrative anarchy has pushed the people into inanition.