ACTIVE INDIVIDUALS IN ORISSA POLITICS PRESENTLY PREFER BJP

Subhas Chandra Pattanayak

Active individuals in Orissa politics are eager to join BJP in the context of Election 2009.

Repentant for having spent so much energy for a party that has turned into a body of Sonia factotums and a launching pad of American interest, Sri Tara Prasad Bahinipati, who was markedly the most vociferous member of Congress in the outgoing Orissa Assembly, has resigned from its primary membership and has joined the BJP.

Uma Ballav Rath, the lone crusader against Navin misrule in the district of Puri is leaving Congress in protest against factotumism. BJP being a party run on internal democracy, he is trying to make his tryst with it.

Amongst all political activists of Orissa Bijay Mohapatra is a noted name, who, despite being a founder member of BJD, was dismissed by Navin simply because he had refused to accept Navin Patnaik’s personal hegemony over the collective body. He has joined BJP after his party NCP allied with Navin.

Ms. Archana Nayak, who was a BJD Member of Parliament in the outgoing Loksabha and known from her student days as a person dedicated to the cause she takes up, has joined BJP.

The list is long and rising.

But note worthy is, when politicians with a sense of self-respect are resigning from Congress and BJD is trying to catch as much of them as possible but getting only the sophomores, seasoned politicians and veterans of hustings are joining only the BJP.

Communists have become such a laughing stuff after seeking refuge under the POSCO pillar Navin Patnaik that not a single political fellow worth mention is even looking at them.

This is worrisome for the progressive peoples; but in context of election 2009, this is the realty.

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EARTH HOUR OBSERVED

Residents of VR 32, Unit 6 in the City of Bhubaeswar joined orissamatters.com in observing Earth Hour 2009 on 28 March 2009 at the designated time from 8.30 to 9.30 in the night.

All electric appliances were put off and importance of the Earth Hour was discussed with Prof. Sabitarani Kanungo in the chair. The mission has a major role to play in saving our planet from climatic disasters and to wake up peoples to do their best for reduction of global warming, said Subhas Chandra Pattanayak.

In the media, when Orissa’s latest broad sheet The Khabara gave central place to the appeal highlighted by orissamatters by translating its presentation with due acknowledgment, the oldest newspaper, The Samaj, supported the cause through an editorial.

Er. Nagendranath Mohaptra, initiator of observation of Earth Hour in Orissa was encouraged by the unreserved cooperation to the cause by eminent persons.

AGENTS OF FOREIGN INTEREST FLOCK TOGETHER

CONGRESS DENIES TICKETS TO ACTIVE OPPONENTS OF NAVIN

Subhas Chandra Pattanayak

Birds of the same feather flock together.

So also in politics, the agents of foreign interests and proponents of factotumism.

We have earlier observed that the party of factotums, Congress, where agents of foreign interest rule the roost, will try to help Navin Patnaik grab power again in Orissa as thereby foreign firms such as POSCO would be helped with the environment they need to exploit Orissa’s natural wealth.

It has come true with denial of party tickets by the Congress “high command” to active and well-known opponents of Navin Patnaik.

To help him win the last election, the so-called Congress high command had destroyed the party prospects in Orissa by discarding winning candidates for planting discredited fellows jettisoned by Navin from BJD under charges of corruption.

Peoples of Orissa, who were almost ready to dethrone Navin changed their mind thereafter as to them Congress appeared as incorrigibly corrupt a party that had no concern for its honest members.

Had it not been so, Navin could never have won that election.

This time too, Congress high command has played similar tricks to help Navin.

It has denied party tickets to those who were most active against Navin misrule during the ending term of his incumbency.

Sitting members of the Assembly such as Tara Prasad Bahinipati and Nimain Sarkar are examples. The other MLAs who have been refused party tickets are Habibulla Khan, Hema Gamang, Purna Chandra Majhi, Rabindra Kumar Mallik and the prime personality of Congress in Orissa as well as its veteran of hustings, J. B, Pattanaik.

Even as Bahinipati has resigned from the party in protest, Congress members including those of Bahinipati’s own district Koraput have voiced their collective protest against the conspiracy of Congress high command against Congress in Orissa.

It is really curious to note that the single most active voice against Navin’s misrule in the entire district of Puri, Uma Ballav Rath has been denied with party ticket even though he could certainly have won from Puri constituency.

Uma’s victory could have jeopardized Vedant’s land-grabbing design. And exactly as to Navin, to Sonia-Singh combine it was an anathema.

Genuine members of Congress all over the State are in deep disappointment over selection of candidates for Assembly constituencies. To them, it is a cool, clever and calculated conspiracy to help Navin in retaining his position in Orissa. Consequently, hundreds of them have preferred resignation even as most of them have decided to work against heavy cash payment and no more on party allegiance.

To Congress high command, victory of the party in Orissa is not more important than continuation of incumbency of Navin as their common purpose is replacement of Indian democracy with imperialism propelled plutocracy.

We in Orissa have no other way than watching how agents of foreign interest would flock together behind the screen of mock fights in the birth month of our Motherland, April.

POWER SCENARIO IN ORISSA IS BLEAK AND BLACK

NAVIN PATNAIK CHEATS PEOPLES WITH BROWNOUT AND UNSCHEDULED AREA LOAD SHEDDING

Subhas Chandra Pattanayak

Darkness is looming large over Orissa power sector in these summer months of 2009. The water level in all the hydro reservoirs of the State is inching towards rock-bottom drawdown level.

Chief Minister Navin Patnaik and his braggart energy minister S. N. Patra are boasting about constant power supply to consumers in the State. But in reality they are cheating the peoples with constant brownout and unscheduled area load shedding.

They know there is power shortage. Not to irritate the voters in the election environment, they had executed a short-term power banking agreement with the Power Trading Corporation of India Limited (PTC India) on 24 February 2009 to draw 150MW of power from NDPL, New Delhi from 25.02.2009 to 31.03.2009 for a period of 18 hrs daily from 6 A.M.

Patra had boasted before the Press of this “innovative energy banking arrangement”, which in his words was beneficial to Orissa as the GRIDCO would receive costlier power but will return the same with cheaper hydropower` during coming monsoon days.

But he has not dared to tell the peoples so far that this “innovative arrangement” went haywire and died a clumsy death only three days after the commencement, on 27th February 2009, with a very small quantum of 50 MW Power received in total.

Taking into account the bleak situation and possible harassment of the public the electricity regulatory authority of Orissa (OERC) has delivered a decision fixing a logical price for power to be procured from Captive Generating Plants (CGPs) but due to dormancy in administration, they are injecting only around 200 MW to the state Grid. The result is, shortage in the system of over 200 MW, which is now managed by brownout and other unfair practices hinted to above.

The unfair practice is such a guarded secret between Chief Minister Navin Patnaik and Energy Minister S.N.Patra on the one side and on the other, mendacious mandarins in GRIDCO and distribution companies (DISTCOs) that the Chief Secretary of the State is at a loss to understand as to why his department and other heavy departments in the Secretariat have caught fire so many times in this week.

Constant but clandestine brownout is the cause of this fire. Fans, Computers and Air Conditioners running in constant low voltage catch fire, the CM knows. As he knows the reason, he has not issued any order for determination of the cause of frequent fire in the Secretariat.

However, the irritating truth is that due to failure of the State government to act earnestly in power sector, the situation is bleak and black. The State is warming up towards the great summer and it is estimated that the A.C. and fan load will put an extra burden of another 100 MW in the system.

OUR EARLIER WARNING

Earlier in an article captioned “Darkness Looms Large Over Orissa Power Sector” published in these pages on 28 January 2009, we had analyzed the present demand and supply vis-à-vis its projected requirements in Orissa Power Sector up to 2014-15 wherein we had emphasized on immediate action plan to meet the short-term as well as long-term requirement of power.

Orissa has reached a break neck situation with regard to demand & supply of power due to no addition of generation capacity after commissioning of Upper Indravati Hydro Electric Project in FY 2001.

Current availability from all sources – hydel and thermal – in a year of normal rainfall is around 18212 MU with peaking capacity of 3000 MW that may meet the present demand just about the margin.

Unless the Govt. takes appropriate initiatives in a time-bound manner for generating stations to be established by the Independent Power Producers (IPPs) and such other future units (which take time to be erected and commissioned), the State may not be able to meet the demand for power, we had warned.

A bad monsoon will be ruinous for the State’s economy, which calls for sufficient spinning reserve to maintain continuity of supply of electricity.

Therefore, we had suggested that appropriate steps be taken for completion of brown–field projects like expansion of Ib Thermal Power Station by OPGC and TPS at Talcher by NTPC and early implementation of project by IPPs in the State so that the State can continue to maintain a comfortable power position and meet the upcoming industrial loads and massive Rural Electrification under schemes like RGGVY and BGJY.

But Chief Minister Navin Patnaik is too engrossed in propaganda of his father’s name to rise to the reality as a result of which power supply in the state is in utter disarray.

CASE OF GRIDCO

GRIDCO, functioning as the designated entity for procurement of power from generating stations and for bulk supply of power to DISCOMs in the ambit of Single Buyer Model, has filed as many as 15 applications in Orissa Electricity Regulatory Commission (OERC) for procurement of surplus power from CGPs.

The Commission heard the matter on 25.02.2009 where the representatives of GRIDCO, Confederation of Captive Power Plants of Orissa (CCPPO) and CGPs submitted their views/suggestions on sale /purchase of surplus power from CGPs of the State.

During hearing in OERC on 25.02.2009, the GRIDCO submitted that it has been procuring scheduled surplus power from different CGPs of Orissa at the graded rates of Rs.2.02 / KWh up to 8 MU per month, which is less than 10 MW on an average per day; Rs.2.30/KWh up to 8 MU and above per month, which is about 10 MW or above on an average per day and Rs.2.50 / KWh up to 32 MU and above per month, which is about 40 MW or above on an average per day.

GRIDCO has procured about 786 MU surplus power from CGPs and Co-Generation Plants of the State during the period from April to December, 2008, which includes 104.57 MU from CGPs like NALCO, RSP, IMFA and HINDALCO against 352 MU approved by OERC for Annual Revenue Requirement (ARR) of FY 09 for; 233.47 MU from Co-Generation plants like NINL, Arati Steel and TATA against 300 MU approved by OERC for ARR FY 09 and 447.50 MU from other 10 Nos. of CGPs.

The four DISCOMs and the long term open access customers like ICCL and NALCO have already overdrawn about 900 MU of power during FY 2008-09 (up to 31.01.2009) which is more than the quantum approved by OERC for the corresponding period.

As compared to the FY 2007-08, all Hydel Stations of Orissa are expected to generate about 2000 MU less in FY 2008-09.

GRIDCO has estimated that Orissa may have to face power shortage up to June 2009 of about 300 MW considering the present injection from the CGPs to the tune of 130 MW.

Due to such deficit power scenario, GRIDCO is procuring high cost UI power sometimes even by paying Rs.8 / Unit or more.

CGPs of the State have represented to GRIDCO that due to global meltdown, there is downsizing of production by the manufacturers / industries and consequently demand of power has gone down. Due to crash in commodity price in the world market, power has now become their main commodity for sale for these electro-metallurgical industries having the CGPs and therefore, the industries intend to sell their surplus power at higher price so as to sustain in such recessionary situation.

Some of the CGPs like NBVL, Jindal Stainless Ltd., Hindalco, NINL, Arati Steel Ltd., Shyam DRI etc. have already applied for Open Access so as to sell their surplus power outside the State through power traders or through Power Exchanges at higher rates.

GRIDCO has collected the information from the State of Chhatisgarh where CGPs are selling surplus power to the State Grid at te rate of 280 P/KWh.

In its ARR application for FY 2009-10 it has therefore proposed a rate of 300 P/KWh for procurement of surplus power from the State CGPs.

As per the CGP Pricing Policy published by OERC, the GRIDCO has called for the bid and cost of generation data from different CGPs through bid document in line with the firm and infirm power as envisaged in the said Policy. Thirteen CGPs have submitted the bid documents, quoting their lowest price (inclusive of 10% of cost of generation), which varies from Rs.3.85 to 5.68 per KWh. Two CGPs have submitted their bid documents, quoting their lowest price (inclusive of 10% of cost of generation), which are Rs.4.19 and Rs.5.15 per KWh.

GRIDCO wanted to impress upon the Commission that the rates quoted by different CGPs are quite high. The rates are varying from Rs.3.85/KWh to Rs.5.68 / KWh. It would be difficult to procure power by GRIDCO at such a higher rate for the State consumption.

There are also subsisting bilateral agreements of GRIDCO with CGPs like NALCO & IMFA. They are pressing hard for higher rates due to rise in coal and oil prices.

GRIDCO requested the Commission for necessary and appropriate orders in this regard, suggesting the Commission to consider and approve a flat rate of 300 P/KWh for harnessing surplus power from the State CGPs for the consumption in the State as the bulk supplier expects a shortage of about 300 MW of power up to end of June 2009 (430 MW without CGP injection ) and requested the State CGPs through the Commission to come forward to help the State of Orissa to come out from the present power shortage scenario by injecting a minimum of 430 MW to State Grid from 1st March, 2009 to 30th June, 2009.

CASE OF CCPPO

But during the hearing on 25.02.2009 Shri Sanjeev Das, Secretary, Confederation of Captive Power Plants of Orissa (CCPPO) has refused to recognize the shortage of power in the State and stated that the confederation would support the State Grid with committed quantity of injection of surplus power from CGPs to the tune of 450 MW which may go up 600 MW in the future provided an appropriate price for such surplus power is decided by the State Commission.

While the global recession is already taking its toll on the industries and the prospects warrant sustainability only through a reasonable return on power supply, CCPPO requested the Commission for permission of Open Access from the State Utility as per the provisions of the statute.

CCPPO’s apprehension is that if its above noted proposals are not agreed to, some of the industries will be forced to shut down leading to loss of revenue by Government of Orissa on the sale of principal products as well as loss of employment of many direct or indirect workers creating law and order problems.

Its final averments stressed on a graded rate of Rs.3.10 per KWh with suitable ascending slabs for the consumption inside the State; an appropriate price in the range of Rs.3.50 to Rs.3.80 per KWh for the CGP power traded outside the State. It insisted that all the Captive Generating Plants / Co-generating plants be suitably paid every month for their contribution for consumption inside the State / outside the State as per the certification of a competent statutory body and captive generating plants / co-generating plants having subsisting agreement be not discriminated against.

ORDERS OF OERC

The Commission at Para 12.13 of the Order dated 14.03.2008 had mentioned that the surplus power from CGPs should be procured through a competitive bidding with a rider that the bid price is to be within the maximum of 10% of the cost of generation of the particular CGP for consumption by the State Utilities. The State Utility for the purpose of trading, if considered appropriate by the Purchasing Utilities, may absorb prices higher than this.

The CGP Pricing Policy stipulates that subsisting contracts with the State Designated Agency have to be dealt with according to the terms of the agreement based on their MOUs with the State and are not covered within the ambit of that order. At present GRIDCO has subsisting MOU with NALCO and erstwhile ICCL, which in the mean time has been merged, with IMFA. While GRIDCO has purchased 66.64 MU from NALCO at a rate of 141.21 paise per unit, it has purchased 3.03 MU from ICCL at a rate of 93.60 paise per unit from April, 08 to January, 2009.

The Commission observed from the Bid Statement submitted by GRIDCO that the bidders have quoted price in the range of Rs.3.85 per KWh to Rs.5.68 per KWh for supply of about 210 MW during March, 2009 and about 220 MW during FY 2009-10. These bids are based on their respective costs, particularly that of fuel and its availability.

The Commission observed from the Power Trading scenario in the two National Power Exchanges IEX and PXI for the period from 21st February,2009 to 27th February, 2009 and noted the weighted average cost of traded power in IEX at Rs.6.33 per KWh and that in PXI at Rs.6.99 per KWh.

The Commission has noted with great concern the current status of power availability, given the current hydro situation and the present forecast of a deficit in total availability, which is seen from the submission of GRIDCO. In the absence of CGP injection of 130 MW, the overall requirement of availability may rise to 430 MW as per GRIDCO’s admission during the hearing.

The Commission has also noted from the submission of CCPPO that the global recession is already taking its toll on the industries and the prospects warrant sustainability only through a reasonable return on power supply.

Power sector in the state is now facing a peculiar situation wherein in one hand the CGPs can inject about 450 to 600 MW power to the State Grid if a suitable price is paid to them at this juncture. At the same time GRIDCO is not burdened with costlier powers than that of the highest cost of generation from a thermal power station in Eastern Region, which hovers around 276 P/KWh. If a suitable price is not paid to CGPs, they are eager to trade in Power Exchanges or through bilateral route in open access mode at a much higher price than the bid price. CCPPO – the representative body of the CGPs apprehends that if the proposal for a suitable / appropriate price for surplus power of CGPs is not agreed to, some of the state industries will be closed. GRIDCO’s concern, on the other hand, is that if the power is purchased at a higher cost and this additional cost is not passed on to the consumers through a rise in Retail Supply Tariff, the Distribution Companies would not be able to pay to GRIDCO the cost of power supplied and in turn GRIDCO would default in paying to the generators. It, therefore, submitted that the Commission should take a rational view in striking a harmonious balance to protect the interest of generators, the Bulk supplier, the Retail supplier and the consumers.

After going through the records and submission made by GRIDCO and the representative of CGPs and keeping in view the current difficult situation faced by the State as well as the recession experienced by manufacturers and the economy, the Commission in their order dated 28.02.2009 have delivered an interim order to enable harnessing of the available idle / bottled up capacity of CGPs at a reasonable price and keep the principal producing units in a sustainable mode while at the same time not burdening the users of electricity who are also hit badly by the recession.

While the CCPPO expects the price prevailing in the Indian Power Exchange and the price available through UI mechanism, it cannot be such as to burden all consumers with an unsustainable loading through higher price.

Considering all aspects in totality and adopting the principle of “live and let live” the Commission has directed that for supply of power by the CGPs/ Co-generating plants to GRIDCO for sale to DISTCOs meant for consumption by the consumers in the State, the procurement price of firm power from the CGPs will be Rs.3.00/ KWh with effect from 01.03.2009. However, to encourage co-generation as is mandated under the Electricity Act,2003 the power generated by co-gen. plants e.g. sponge-iron plants such as NINL, Arati Steel, Tata Sponge, etc. may be given an incentive and shall be paid at the rate of Rs. 3.10 per/KWh with effect from 01.03.2009. The procurement price of Rs.3.00 /KWh for all power meant for sale to DISTCOs is considered just and reasonable keeping in view the current cost of Rs.2.76/ KWh of the highest cost of generation from a TPS in the Eastern Region .A premium of about 10 % (ten percent) on this price is considered appropriate as a stimulus to the harnessing of bottled up capacity with the CGPs.

In order to encourage the CGP / Co-generating plants to fully utilize their bottled up capacity for generation of captive power/Co-generation power and to enable GRIDCO to access power from different sources including CGPs/Co-generating plants for meeting the demands in the State and making available a good quantum of power for trading, GRIDCO should offer a remunerative price to the CGPs in respect of power used for trading. Keeping in view the prevailing rate in the power exchanges, UI rate and price quoted in the bidding it would be just and equitable for GRIDCO and the CGPs and Co-generating plants to have an indicative rate of Rs.3.50 per KWh for procuring surplus power meant for trading. This is merely an indicative price suggested by the Commission, when, if they so like, the individual CGPs / Co-generating plants and GRIDCO may enter into further negotiation for an agreed price above this indicative rate.
“However, the procurement price by GRIDCO from the Captive Generating Plants/ Co-generating plants for the purpose of trading should not unduly vary from the indicative price of Rs.3.50 per KWh now being suggested by us as an interim measure”, the Commission has said.

After bridging of the gap in the ARR, the balance of surplus gained on account of trading of CGPs / Co-generation power may be shared with the CGPs/ Co-generation plants at the year end.

In respect of injection of inadvertent power the payment would be equal to the pooled cost of hydropower of the State during 2008-09 and 2009-10 as the case may be depending on the period of supply.

The rate of power indicated above will also be applicable with effect from 01.03.2009 to those CGPs/Co-generating plants having subsisting contracts/ agreements with GRIDCO. This will be without any prejudice to the outcome of any dispute/ arbitration pending in any court of law or any authority and will have no retrospective effect whatsoever.

The CGPs/Co-generating plants may be paid as per the rates indicated in the proportion of CGP/Co-generation power consumed inside the state and traded outside the state as certified Load Despatcher of SLDC in each month.

The Commission further reiterates that this is a common interim order and the arrangement is an interim implementation plan and would be operative from 01.03.2009.

After 30.6.2009 the Commission would review this arrangement as envisaged in Para 12.28 of the CGP pricing policy announced by the Commission in their order dated 14.3.2008.

But the State Government has failed to take advantage even of this order. Against power shortage of about 430MW at present, the injection of surplus power from the fifteen numbers of CGPs from 17.03.2009 to 21.03.2009 is only around 200 MW.

How long the State should bear with the wrong persons in right places?

CONGRESS IN STENCH: WHOM TO BLAME?

Subhas Chandra Pattanayak

Son of the former king of Dhenkanal, ill-famed for having killed Baji Raut through his mercenaries engaged to extinguish peoples’ fight for freedom, who had to merge his State with Union of India to escape peoples’ wrath, Sri K. P. Singhdeo is a self-proclaimed soldier of Sonia Gandhi and naturally, therefore, after being “appointed” as President of the Orissa Pradesh Congress Committee by the lady autocrat of Congress, he is supposed to have been doing his duties under directions of Sonia.

Hence, when Rohit Pujari, President of Orissa Pradesh Youth Congress till he resigned in disgust a couple of days ago, attributed his resignation to unbearable spread of stench in Congress as constituencies are being sold away to mafia and capitalists at huge costs in ignoring the youth that have contributed their might to keeping the party active after it was rejected in general elections, whom to blame, Sonia or Singhdeo?

Congress obviously is deep in shenanigans over ticket distribution.

It is alleged that the list prepared by the PCC is being tampered with at the behest of lobbyists that are trying to procure the constituencies of their respective choice for mafias they represent even as leaders with genuine concern for Congress have been trying to foil the selling away of party tickets to mafias and to ensure allocation thereof to genuine workers instead.

This is why announcement of candidates’ list is getting delayed; admit senior ‘leaders’ of Congress in Orissa.

Against such a scenario, it is interesting that the lady autocrat of Congress has declared that there is no better candidate for the Prime Minister post than Sri Manmohan Singh in Congress. This assertion of Smt. Gandhi, who does not know the fellows that really work for her party, is enough to show to what low the party has declined.

Under her grip the party has become such bizarre that provincial leaders are unable to understand as to who of the members in their province are genuine ones to whom party tickets could be allotted without hesitation.

The lady who does not know her party in reality and has ruined its internal democracy to keep it under her personal grip so that her son rules de facto over it, can possibly not find any other Indian than the ruiner of India’s pledge for socialism, Manmohan Singh, for the top post. In fact, during his incumbency, he has shown how sincerely he could serve the foreigners’ interest as evidenced in the nuke deal. For Sonia, nothing could be more splendid than this. Congress needs hands that would support her ally with Singh, “come what may”!

So, for the stench in matter of party tickets, if youth leaders like Rohit, who till yesterday were in the Congress, resign and leave the party in Orissa, whom to blame? Sonia or her “sainik” Singhdeo or both or all the misguided fellows who wrongfully believe that they serve democracy by serving Sonia?

ROHIT PUJARI ADHERES TO GOLAMVAD; JUMPS FROM CONGRESS TO BJD

Subhas Chandra Pattanayak

When it is essential for India that the election 2009 should be a battle between Ganatantravad (democratism) and Golamvad (factotumism), Rohit Pujari has resigned from the President post of Orissa Pradesh Youth Congress to which he was “appointed” four years ago and has joined BJD. Obviously he has his adherence to Golamvad as both the Congress and BJD are practitioners of Golamvad. In our observation on March 20, we have defined Golamvad and shown how it acts against democracy.

After the election programs were declared, not only Pujari but around a dozen of vote mongers have changed from Congress to BJD and vice versa, all of them being followers of masters of either of these two parties.

But the way Pujari has exposed the “Sainik” of Sonia Gandhi, K.P.Singhdeo as the epicenter of corruption in allocation of constituencies, is quite speaking on what is going on in the Congress.

Businessmen close to KP are collecting money from mafias to auction out constituencies clandestinely, he has alleged, shrouding simultaneously his observation over other members of the team “appointed” by Sonia along with KP.

KP has of course promptly pooh-poohed Pujari and another member of the “appointed” Presidium of Pradesh Congress, Lalatendu Bidyadhar Mohapatra has expressed happiness over departure of a “non-functioning” element that had kept the Youth Congress “inoperative”; but none of them has rejected his allegation of corrupt practice in constituency allocation.

However, the syndrome that craves attention is that disappointed vote mongers in Congress prefer the other platform of Golamvad, i.e. the BJD although persons such as Member of Parliament Archana Nayak feeling suffocated under Golamvad have left BJD to join BJP, the only party other than the left having practiced democracy in party management.

OUR PLANET IS WARMING. OBSERVE “EARTH HOUR,2009”

Subhas Chandra Pattanayak

Observance of “EARTH HOUR” this year is scheduled to be held on March 28, 2009 from 8.30 PM to 9.30 PM.

On March 29, 2007, as many as 2 millions residents in far away Sydney in Australia switched off their lights and electrical appliances for an hour from 7.30 PM to 8.30 PM local time.

This innovative action has captured the imagination of people of 400 cities in 35 countries across the world, who switched off lights and appliances from 8 PM to 9 PM on 29.03.2008 to observe “EARTH HOUR, 2008”.

Er. Nagendra Nath Mahapatra, Honorary Advisor ( Eastern Region), Indian Institute of Sustainable Development (IISD), in a Press Statement has informed that the “EARTH HOUR, 2009” will be observed in 1858 cities, towns and Municipalities of 81 countries across the world from 8.30 to 9.30 PM on March 28, 2009 as the part of the world’s first global action between earth and global warming.

The observance of the “EARTH HOUR, 2009” will send a clear message to the politicians across the world that action on climate change and global warming is a popular cause for which people across the world are willing to accept some little sacrifice.

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon has urged upon the citizens around the world to join “EARTH HOUR, 2009” to demand action on climate change.

He expects that “EARTH HOUR 2009” will be the largest demonstration of public concerned about climate change ever attempted.

If you support the cause, here are 10 different ways to spend Earth Hour and reduce our carbon footprint.

(1) Attend a local Earth Hour event or organize your own by throwing an Earth Hour street party with your neighbor; (2) Gather family & friends for a night picnic in your local park and look at the stars; (3) Enjoy a family dinner by candlelight; (4) Organize a treasure hunt in the dark.; (5) Take the dog for a night walk; (6) Have a candle-lit bath; (7) Sit in the dark and share stories; (8) Organize a family night playing board games; (9) Share a romantic night without light with your loved one and / or (10) Upload your ‘on the night’ photos and videos to flickr and You Tube respectively, and then add them to the Earth Hour flickr group and the global You Tube Group.

“We are in a dangerous path. Our planet is warming. We need green growth that benefits all communities. We need sustainable energy for a more climate-friendly prosperous world. We must observe the “Earth Hour, 2009”. This is the path of the future”, says the appeal.

We fully endorse the appeal and urge upon our esteemed readers and patrons to observe Earth Hour at the fixed time on 28th.