Western Orissa be Equipped with a High Court Bench and a Share of the Secretariat

Western Orissa is Nature’s splendid repository of precious resources. Yet, it is known as the land of poverty!

Western Orissa is Orissa’s fountainhead of culture from where Vajrayana flowed into this soil to save Buddhism in its birthplace and its founder philosopher Indrabhuti, king of Uddiyana – Sambalpur region of present day – enriched this soil so uniquely that it came to be known as Udissa, which eventually has become Orissa. Yet, it is known as a stretch of land far away from the mainstream!

Western Orissa is the original source of Sahajayana, given to mankind by the great radical queen Laxminkara of Suvarnapur, from which Orissa’s unique lifestyle of universality – the Cult of Jagannatha – has evolved. Yet, it is languishing as a stretch of land more known for deprivation than of distinction!

If universal brotherhood is a distinction of Oriyas, it owes its origin to the Mother Cult that flourished in Western Orissa. It not only gave us a great empire of queens of Bhauma dynasty that stressed on the primacy of land as source of livelihood, but also has yet retained the primordial role of Nuakhai in social solidarity. Yet, it is continuing to be a patch of soil where instances of mothers striving on baby selling are being sadly witnessed!

Western Orissa had fought against fragmentation of Orissa by the British and because of its resolute determination, the modern Orissa has got back her present shape. Yet, it is unable to come out of the stigma of starvation deaths!

All these and many more difficulties the inhabitants of Western Orissa are subjected to, are going on unabated, because post-independence political power-holders of Orissa, sitting in their citadel at Bhubaneswar – notoriously one-sided in situation – have neglected this part of the State in every respect.

Therefore, in these pages, I have several times argued that the State Secretariat should be divided and the departments, concerned more with matters relevant to Western Orissa such as Forest, Irrigation, Mines, Tribal Welfare et cetera, should be shifted to Sambalpur with the concerned Secretaries and Ministers, so that administration, instead of being remote-controlled, would come to door-steps of the most neglected people and the region could be saved from the current quagmire of negligence and resultantly resurrected into prosperity. I have also argued that a bench of the Orissa High Court should have its permanent seat at Sambalpur, so that justice-seekers left at the mercy of time at the present, as I have shown therein, could be extricated from the cruel environment of lingering litigations and their life and properties could be better protected and secured.

If the State Government is reluctant to do this, it is not for any other reason than for the high functionaries’ fear of losing the comforts of stay in the Capital at Bhubaneswar.

People of Orissa, therefore, should stand with the people of Western Orissa and ensure that decentralization of administration – both executive and judiciary – should start with the success of the people of the neglected region.

SAD NEWS TO SHARE

During my stay in New York, I have suffered a great loss in sad demise of Rabi Narayan Mohanty, my friend in trade union movement of journalists in Orissa, who, heading the Bhubaneswar bureau of now defunct Prajatantra for many years, had salvaged Nyayavati – a journal once being published from my native area of Athgarh – and steered it into a recognized daily as its editor. He was a man of deep affection for friends and profound appreciation for foes.

He will be fondly remembered by the press and the people of Orissa who know him well.

His wife had spent her childhood in my village Tigiria and was the most intimate friend of my younger sister Lily. Therefore, even though Rabi Narayan was Rabi bhai to me, his wife is always a younger sister to me. I have no word to console her and her children. Because I have no word to console myself.

Orissa Press will certainly miss the man in whose ever smiling face it was seeing its lively reflection. Always.

Media Ethics Contravened: Prasanta Patnaik Castigates Police and Press over Public Humiliation of Alleged Female Maoists on Their Surrender

If really any female Maoist surrenders before the police, neither the police nor the press has any right to socially humiliate her in spicy projection of how she was sexually exploited by any male comrade in assumed hide outs, says eminent journalist Prasanta Patnaik, reminding them of media ethics in no uncertain terms.

Writing in Bhubaneswar’s language daily Suryaprava, Patnaik has condemned the way, time and again, some young women are being put before the TV cameras and obliging journalists by the police to divulge that they were Maoists whom their male comrades have raped at gun points.

Whether or not such surrenders are stage managed is not investigated into by the media.

But sadly, the press persons, covering the press conference held by the police, forget that the laws of this land and time honored ethics of journalism do not vouch for justifiability in projecting the face of sex victims in public, at stake being the social honor of women.

Were the police claim really true, the jungles where Maoists dwell must have often witnessed attack on male Maoists by the abused females as weapons are also under their possession and they are trained in using them. That no such instance has ever surfaced and police has never registered any case under any allegation for such offenses, is enough to make one wonder, if placing of such females by the police before the press is not willfully designed to malign the Maoists, Patnaik has noted.

He has called upon the Police and the Press not to put in future the females before the cameras to divulge how sexually they were assaulted, if at all any such act has ever happened, at least to honor women dignity, irrespective of they being or not being Maoists.

Yet, Hazare Made Misrulers Fidget

Anna Hazare, no doubt, hijacked mass awakening against plutocratic misrule to a peripheral syndrome that we have discussed earlier.

To the right-wingers’ delight, this has succeeded in stymieing for the time being the revolutionary uprising against creation of an India of the rich within the India of the Indians.

Yet, the way Manmohan Singh government has responded to his fast for creation of Jan Lokpal is indicative of how the misrulers are in fidgets when faced with forcing circumstances to act against grafts. Developments that we have marked, make me sure of this.

One:

The Prime Minister, nervous of public wrath against misrule on watching public response to Anna’s April fast, as a way-out, elevated him to an extra-constitutional partner in law making by deputing his ministers to co-author with him a draft Bill for his conceived Lokpal. But when the ministers failed to hoodwink him and his team, they were recalled as clumsily as they were engaged and the government rushed into placing a rash draft before the Loksabha claiming official prerogative in that regard, with Dr. Singh asserting that it is the Parliament’s prerogative to pass the Bill with whatever amendment it thinks necessary to form a powerful Lokpal which the civil society wants.

Two:

As Anna went on threatening with fast from August 16, 2011 against this betrayal, the police was used to frustrate that by denying him the location he wanted to carry out his program.

Even as senior ministers were engaged to convince the public that there was no political pressure on the police to deny him permission for fasting at his preferred site, Dr. Singh tried to play his misleading best from the customary Independence Day podium where crux of his speech was devoted to the issue of corruption, while, shrewdly, he was stressing that eradication of corruption would not be possible through hunger-strikes. If Lokpal is needed to end corruption, and a specific law is required for that, his government has already placed a Bill for the purpose before the Parliament, he said.

Three:

The police with a motive to suppress his proposed agitation and to browbeat his team, arrested Anna.

Even though the union home minister was claiming that there was no political interference in police work, and in arresting Anna, the police has acted as per its own wisdom and shall continue to act free of pressure, it was political dictation alone that set him free sans any charge or condition.

Shenanigans were such that he was, on his own accord, allowed to stay in the jail till the Ramlila Maidan in the very heart of the Capital city was prepared to host his fast, the preceding police stance completely discarded.

Such a farce of putting a person in jail and releasing him under orders not of judiciary but as the government wanted and allowing him to stay in jail till he decides to come out to start his fasting in the public, is unprecedented and indicative only of the nervousness that Manmohan Singh government suffers from, when faced with an agitation against corruption.

Four:

As the fasting went on, Dr. Singh not only frequently deputed his ministers to persuade Anna to give up, but also particular officers of high rank, believed to be having personal rapport with Anna, were summoned from his home state to prevail upon him not to continue with the fast.

And, the Parliament was made to jump over its rules to offer a standing ovation to Anna, as the Prime Minister put his salutes to him on records of the House and the Speaker got off her chair to take a standing position to express the appreciations of the whole House of what contribution he has made to the country by fasting against corruption and to appeal him on behalf of the entire House to end his fast. In this exercise, Dr. Singh had to say on records that the House shall consider the official Bill along with the parallel Bill Anna has been insisting upon and two other documents – not on records as Bills but purported to be so- sans any prejudice, if that helps improvisation of the official Bill, the aim being creation of a “strong” Lokpal.

This unprecedented stance never matches with the stance that gave birth to the official Bill placed before the Loksabha and makes it clear that afraid of what would happen, the political power holders have resorted to this tactics.

Five:

Yet again, through Rahul Gandhi, fresh attempts were made to freeze the Bills sine die under veil of giving the Lokpal a constitutional status and validity.

Halting of the announced agenda to discuss Anna’s Bill on Friday and Rahul’s reading out a written speech stressing upon bestowal of constitutional status to the Lokpal like that of the Election Commission which has amusing similarity with the versions of former CEC T.N.Seshan, is not without any time-consuming idea.

But people’s wrath against the politicians basking under the powers and privileges of Parliament is so very visible that the parliamentarians next day did not put any premium on Rahul’s suggestion and in stead, adopted a resolution to accommodate the three points advanced by Anna in the Lokpal Bill that stress upon the scope of the ombudsman’s area of operation only.

Criminals are happy:

The criminals and politicians in power – there are 180 members in the parliament that reportedly have criminal antecedents – are happy that the mass awakening against plutocratic misrule has been successfully channelized into an Annanized agitation against corruption and finally has fizzled out by adoption of a resolution in the Loksabha to create a Lokpal with jurisdiction comprising the areas Anna has stressed upon.

Anna has ended his fast at the summit of his image building as the new Indian messiah by corporate media as well as political stooges of capitalism, to whom the ever expanding left-revolution against the environment of plutocracy in India is a matter of constant worry.

By agreeing to incorporate Anna’s three suggestions in creation of a “strong” Lokpal and by giving a day to the Loksabha to express its mind thereon, the misrulers have of course evaded the instant pressure and succeeded in stymieing the left upsurge.

Whether or not he has hoodwinked the gullible people or himself has been hoodwinked by plutocrats in power, is a different matter to materialize in course of time; but, for now, it is apparent that, Hazare has made the misrulers fidget.

New Danger to Indian Democracy: Anna Hazare

No doubt, Dr. Manmohan Singh has damaged indian democracy by rendering its resolution for socialism inconsequential under sheer misuse of prime ministerial powers. His reign has ruined common Indian’s confidence in administration. Unbridled price rise of essential commodities has shattered Indians’ dreams for a fair living. Administrative priority on private industry under guise of globalization has impoverished maximum majority of Indians, specifically those that have for generations been in self-employment as small and marginal farmers even as shrinkage of employment opportunities in public sector has pushed the highly qualified young persons into such pusillanimous mentality that they acquiesce into exploitive service conditions in the private sector and many work as bonded workers though of elite class.

In Singh’s regime, dignity of the Parliament has been destroyed. The Country has been forced to suffer the ignominy of having a Parliament that allowed the American nuke deal without even examining the text of the Act that controls the deal and did not solve the riddle of note-for-vote in the Loksabha in the context of Dr. Singh’s confidence motion after his allies broke away as all their attempts failed to dissuade him from the said sad deal. Not even yet the ignominy has ended.

When the world is rising against nuclear power, Dr. Singh is suppressing the people in India to provide business prospects to foreigners by planting their nuke plants in Indian soil as is going on in Jaitapur.

The money his government has denied the exchequer to get, in a single instance of scam in 2G spectrum, is so huge, as calculated by the CAG – the nation’s constitutional authority of audit – that, had the country thus not been cheated, every citizen could have got sufficient tax relief without any disadvantage caused to the ongoing projects and the current plan.

There are other mega scams, exposed by CAG, such as the one in the commonwealth games, in which, the national supreme auditor has spotted demonstrable improprieties practiced by the PMO and the Delhi CMO whereas the Opposition sees the needle of suspicion pointing straight to Dr. Singh and his protege, the CM of Delhi, Shila Dixit. Singh’s regime has become a regime of scams and protection of black money.

Had Dr. Singh taken required steps to retrieve the already known black money stashed in secret accounts in foreign banks by the traitors of India, every inch of cultivable lands in the country could have been irrigated with that money. But he did not, probably because, that could have led to retrieve the massive amount of secret money stashed by Sonia Gandhi family in Swiss Banks as exposed by the Schweizer Illustrierte of Switzerland in its issue of November 19, 1991 leading to its discussion in Indian parliament and subsequent authentication by its publisher and harped on umpteen times by Indian Media and eminent journalists and jurists ever since.

Black money has created an India of the mafia within India of the Indians.

Corruption has engulfed the country in every sphere, from Parliament to Panchayats, from judiciary to public servants even to the extent of peons.

The situation is so alarming that even the Prime Minister has admitted this in his customary speech on the occasion of Independence Day on August 15, 2011.

“Corruption manifests itself in many forms. In some instances, funds meant for
schemes for the welfare of the common man end up in the pocket of government
officials. In some other instances government discretion is used to favor a selected
few. There are also cases where government contracts are wrongfully awarded to the
wrong people”, he has admitted.

In his speech he has said, “In some cases, functionaries of the Central government face allegations of corruption. In other cases, it is the functionaries of various State governments.” But, he has said, his government has also “no magic wand” to save the country from corruption.

What a Prime Minister! He has been seeking a magic wand! Why he is not resigning if without a magic wand he cannot control corruption? His job is a political job and not of a magician. His economic policies and rule of bulls that he has encouraged has been increasing corruption and instead of taking a turnabout, he has been ruining India in search of a magic wand!

When in his independence day speech he has asserted that “there is no single big step which we can take to eradicate corruption” and maintained that he “will say nothing more on this subject”, he has uttered not a single word against black money that the traitors have stashed in secret accounts outside India. Nothing could have been more patronizing to the traitors than this stance of Dr. Singh.

Therefore, the people of India are eager to stop this. They are eager to be extricated from this quagmire. They want to save their democracy from the danger that Dr. Singh has created. So there is a new awakening of Indian masses against Singh’s misrule. It is so very clear that even senior Congress leaders are projecting an alternative in Rahul Gandhi when he is in Office, without bothering for how embarrassing it is to the incumbent PM. They know, with Dr. Singh in Office, it would be impossible for their party to return to power in the coming election.

If people reject the party of Dr. Singh for all the crime his government has committed against the country, who should take over?

It is natural for BJP as the main Opposition to aspire for office.

But this party of profiteers had sabotaged India by selling out profit fetching public sector undertakings to private operators in dubious deals during Vajpayee’s Prime Ministership and had unleashed a loot raj by private sector that had devoured national assets and helped its organizers amass huge black money.

As for example, Pramod Mahajan, son of a school teacher of low income, had become a multi-billionaire while basking in Vajpayee’s proximity by the time of his death in the hands of his younger brother in a family feud over sharing the money.

The misrule was so menacing that people had refused BJP a fresh mandate.

But BJP is incorrigible.

Being a party of profit fetchers, its members had no qualms for collecting cash in bribe to put specific questions in the Parliament. The Parliament was so very embarrassed that it had to terminate their membership. And, on challenge, the Supreme Court had to refuse to restore them.

It had to change its national President Banguru Laxmana after he was captured in camera while taking bribe to facilitate illegal deals even in the area of defense of the country.

When these are sample instances of the past, its present is also blackened with corruption. It has members, who, once in power, indulge in rampant corruption, the latest instance being Yeddyurappa of Karnataka,

who had to quit Chief Minister post a few weeks ago on determination of his corruption by the State’s Ombudsman. So, even if people reject the Congress, BJP cannot be sure of victory.

Against this backdrop, a very interesting phenomenon is taking shape. That is, the possibility of revival of the country’s resolution for socialism; because sans socialism the country cannot be extricated from the quagmire it has fallen into. When in these pages I had to advance an argument for imposition of ceiling on private property, I had done so with this reality in mind.

That the strongest champions of socialism – the Communists – have recently suffered a set back specifically in West Bengal Assembly elections, is in no way indicative to people’s preference for non-socialism.

The set back to Communists in power in a province or two was bound to happen under impact of capitalistic opportunism that Dr. Singh’s government has enhanced in continuation to that of Atal Bihari Vajpayee of BJP, specifically as, while taking oath of office, the Communists were legally bound to pledged themselves to a non-communist constitution.

No wonder, the Communists experimentation with power has not proved beneficial to Communism. But Communism has spread its support base in majority of Indian provinces where revolutionaries instead of seeking power through elections are acting as active voice of the suffering but silent majority. There is possibility that the new awakening of masses against Dr. Singh’s misrule, perceivably inspired by the ultra-left’s relentless struggle against capitalism, against exploitation and corruption, may metamorphose into an ideological evolution of India on the basis of political economy and in the opposite pattern of what Dr. Singh has clamped on India. This is why Indian rich is worried.

They are in search of a new mask to retain their reign over India if the current mass awakening ousts Manmohan Singh from power and denies BJP to take advantage. To keep the emerged era of plutocracy in tact, they want just to divert public wrath from the real danger of wealth amassing to a peripheral issue of corruption.For this a new mask is needed through which the gullible people can be mislead again. Their new find is Anna Hazare.

The rich is helping Hazare to hijack the mass awakening against corruption like they had used Jayaprakash Narayan in the early 1970s. I see a tremendous similarity between emergence both of Anna and Narayan as leaders of mass movements against misrule.

Smt. Indira Gandhi of the Congress Party was then the Prime Minister. The country was drowned under corruption. Now Dr. Manmohan Singh of the same Congress Party is the Prime Minister. The country is drowned under corruption.

Indira was heading a government that was so corrupt that wrath of the masses had irrupted into a wild, disorganized agitation strong enough to throw her from throne to the dustbin and to completely change the system of administration she was running.

But her system of administration was suiting the country’s rising mafia, merchant communities and black-money world. For them the system was to be sustained. Through JP that was ensured. A freedom fighter of repute, not soiled by power-politics, he was accepted by the masses to lead their agitation. Indira Gandhi had to go from office. But a more corrupt government had to come in. Beginning from Morarjee to Biju Patnaik, the very same people who had corrupted the Congress and therefore had been jettisoned from that party, had emerged as stars in the movement that JP had taken over as leader and after the election, were in the new government in the name of Janata. And JP was discarded by all of them and the Ministers including Prime Minister Morarjee Deasai indulged in so much corruption and nepotism that the first non-Congress Government collapsed under its own load of filth.

This happened because the mass movement was diverted by JP from awakening against capitalism to slogan against corruption.

The same tactics is being now used by Indian rich through their new mask: Anna Hazare.

If body temperature of a person is alarmingly high, the Doctor must try to bring it down. Therefore, it would be his primary duty to determine the root cause of rise in body temperature. Temperature enhancing malaria cannot be cured by medicines meant for filariasis that also heightens body temperature.

Therefore, he must first determine the cause of rise in body temperature, which, to medical science, is just a symptom of a disease.

Anna Hazare and his team comprising Arvind Kejriwal, Kiran Bedi, Prasant Bhusan et al is misdirecting the movement against misrule to appointment of an ombudsman against corruption. As appointment of a doctor does not cure a disease, appointment of an ombudsman will not eradicate corruption.

Corruption is a symptom, not the disease. Corruption has its root in Indian Constitution that allows individuals to accumulate wealth. Opportunity to acquire and accumulate wealth as personal property without any limit is contributing to corruption. It is because of the political economy of capitalism that Manmohan Singh has initiated in India and has been executing. If corruption is to be eradicated, its root cause – capitalism – is to be removed from political agenda of India. Creation of a Jan Lokpal cannot save the country from corruption. Only social ownership of means of production can.

The so-called team Anna is not for this. Hence the spontaneous mass movement against inequality and misrule is just being hijacked through Hazare by the the same segment of India society that benefit from capitalism and the movement, if goes this way, like that of the movement of 1970s, will melt eventually in a new phase of plutocratic misrule and incorrigible corruption.

Therefore, a new danger to Indian democracy is Anna Hazare. If he and his team do not like to be termed like this, they may steer the movement to at least a demand for a ceiling on private property.

Revelation in Assembly: Orissa Administrative Officers Not Honoring Govt. Orders For Property List

Lest lack of the State Government’s control over administrative officers forms crux of a discussion, revenue minister S.N.Patro has told the Orissa Legislative Assembly on 17th by way of answer to a question from member Gobardhan Das that, action against habitual defaulters in submission of property list is being contemplated.

But the revelation that comes from his answer is that as many as 78 officers of Orissa Administrative Service (OAS) are not honoring government orders to submit their respective property list.

The minister has confessed that when these 78 officers have never revealed their property, the rest 1246 OAS officers, comprising 1123 of Junior branch and 123 of Senior branch) have not submitted their property lists since 2008.

The OAS officers, notwithstanding junior and senior branches, being entirely in the coveted Class-1 cadre from the beginning, with every department manned by them as administrators, occupy primacy in Orissa administration and all other cadres derive their cadre behavior from these officers and the trend they set.

If these officers are so very disrespectful to government orders and governing laws, and the government has not been able as yet to punish them for the offenses against rule of law and official directions, can there ever be any difficulty in grasping what anarchy Naveen Patnaik’s nonchalant chief ministership has pushed the State into?

Let us wait and watch if the Assembly takes up this answer for a special discussion as the issue so clamantly calls for.

Assembly Should Refrain From Paying Obituary Respects To Uniformed Personnel

It is all right for Assemblies and Parliament to pay obituary tributes to their former members.

But, it is sad that they have started paying individual obituary respects to uniformed personnel died in fight against Naxalites or left-wing ultras, as on 17th has happened in Orissa Assembly.

The left-wing ultras are political revolutionaries in active pursuit of a economic philosophy that opposes capitalism. When Capitalist State uses force against them, how should they react?

This question and the answer to it has made us witness loss of lives in both the sides.

Revolutionaries have died in the hands of the state forces and perpetrators of state terror on them have also succumbed to their counter attacks.

Any loss of life in any side is a loss to our motherland and we feel extremely sorry over such losses.

In recognizing the political nature of the Naxals and/or left ultras, the capitalist state has started taking up steps for welfare of the wretchedly poor that are neglected by administration so far and looted by money lenders and/or fund hijackers under the very nose of the government, or as the Prime Minister in his Independence Day speech has confessed, by official functionaries.

So, instead of confrontation with the political ultras, the State should gain by co-operating with them to bring in a desired economic well-being of the people perishing below the poverty line and living under the mercy of fate. It is, therefore, wrong on part of the government to try to extinguish them by bullets.

This is why the police/ paramilitary/ military personnel, who are engaged to use bullets on revolutionaries of our own soil that are risking their lives for the wretchedly helpless and exploited people, do not deserve to be granted martyr status by the state. The uniformed men are paid to kill in confrontations as a duty. So getting killed in confrontations is also a part of the duty paid for. Such death cannot be a gateway to martyrdom.

If these uniformed gunmen, drawing their salaries from the state exchequer, engaged against our own countrymen by their political antagonists in power, in discharging a duty for which they are paid by the State, are respected as martyrs by our legislative houses, it would be nothing but an ugly affront to the martyrs of our country that had voluntarily joined the battle against the foreign invaders and had sacrificed their lives for the independence of our motherland.

Let the patriots brood over this matter.