If they killed, why did they?

Subhas Chandra Pattanayak

It is yet to be established beyond doubts that the Maoists in Chhattisgarh have killed the Congress leaders on Saturday; but the Prime Minister has lost no time in condemning the Maoists for the killing. So also the rich media and the elite of the country. The survivors of the attack also allege that the attackers were the Maoists. And, the general public, thus, is in an environment of believing that the attackers were the Maoists.

Words are inadequate to condemn this violence. But we are yet to know why the Government of India run by Dr. Manmohan Singh of the Congress Party and the Provincial Government run by the BJP have not till now told the nation with definite evidence that it is the Maoists and none else that have killed Mahendra Karma and others and so severely injured V.C.Shukla and others in the Bastar ambush.

The Congress leaders were in a massive campaign against the BJP and their campaign was christened ‘Parivartana Yatra’, meaning ‘a march for change’. The BJP was/is to suffer if the Yatra succeeds. So, it is BJP that was/is to be affected by the Congress campaign, not the Maoists. And BJP is also not a non-violent party. It is known for violence for power and/or force against the political adversary.

So, instead of vomiting set jargons of prejudice against the Maoists, the Prime Minister should ensure that a fact finding investigation into who really caused the mayhem and murder is instituted immediately and completed within a stipulated time.

The fact that need not be investigated into is that a set of Congress campaigners for change in Provincial Government were attacked, injured and killed. What needs to be investigated into is that, who did it and why. If the BJP did it, motive is understandable. But, if the Maoists did it, the Government must tell us as to why they did it. Because, unless we reach the root cause, there shall be no remedy.

May we suggest to the Supreme Court: More than curb on adjournments essential is restriction on admission

Subhas Chandra Pattanayak

In a recent judgment, the Supreme Court of India, from the bench of Justices K S Radhakrishnan and Dipak Misra has strongly disapproved the delay in dispensation of justice in criminal cases. When the Criminal Procedure Code makes it a must for day-to-day proceeding once examination of witnesses starts, “with impunity” adjournments are being allowed in trial stage at the instances of lawyers; and this is causing the delay in justice and avoidable piling of cases, the Court has observed.

This is a very welcome verdict and if not willfully dishonored, it may help speedy dispensation of justice and reduction of load of litigation. But the Supreme Court has no machinery of its own to know if its judgments are honored and therefore, as we have marked, its verdicts, where more than any individual the general public and/or the system of administration are to benefit, do die of negligence by the authorities concerned. We wish this judgment not to die like this.

However, curb on adjournments cannot be the only remedy to overloading of trial courts with litigation. Most of the criminal cases are manufactured and concocted by the black sheep in police in nexus with criminals eager to escape by falsely implicating the innocent or to settle score by torturing their opponents.

Our judicial system is so defective that the primary court does not think it necessary to go beyond the assortment of accusations to be prima facie convinced that the forwarding officer is not influenced by the accuser.

To the primary courts the police are as if the Gods that cannot be looked at askance. This is why; thousands of false cases are being allowed admission every day in India.

That, most of these cases end in acquittal of the accused is indicative of the fact that they were instituted willfully falsely. But, neither the accuser nor the police officer for whom the judiciary was/is overloaded with false cases is ever punished.

The apex court is to look into this phenomenon if the system is really to be relieved of the load of litigation and avoidable loss of judicial time.

It is essential to make it a must for the primary courts to screen the forwarded cases on the matrix of natural justice before registering the case for adjudication. The person whose right to freedom is set to be affected by a criminal case on admission whereof bail would normally be denied, must have the right to be heard before denial of bail so as, at least, not to make a farce of justice and to ensure that the primary court from which the criminal justice system begins its upward journey does not become by itself the prosecutor.

A progressive case law may be created by the Supreme Court to eliminate this defect in criminal procedure.

Every instance of admission of a criminal case should be preceded with a primary hearing to the extent of the primary court getting prima facie convinced of the credibility of the allegations raised against the accused, specifically as it is being increasingly noticed that prosecution is failing to prove the allegations in majority of police cases leading to acquittal of the accused in the long run.

Very often the police institute false cases against persons disadvantageous to their own illegal activities or under pressure from political fellows in power to harass their opponents or under influence of the accuser determined to settle scores with an adversary.

Accepting the police version, therefore, as prima facie reliable in the primary courts should be discouraged. Otherwise, there shall be no reprieve from overloading of judiciary with cases ultimately in most of them to collapse as baseless and/or not proved.

So, more than curb on adjournments, restriction on admission of criminal cases is essential.

Commission of Inquiry needed on Commission of Inquiry

Subhas Chandra Pattanayak

Noted RTI activist Pradip Pradhan has shared with me information officially received that the State Exchequer has coughed up a sum of Rs. 1,04.51.317/- for Justice C.R.Pal Commission of Inquiry, constituted to inquire into the demands of different bar Associations and to make an in-depth study in respect of establishment of a permanent Bench/ Circuit Bench anywhere in the State other than the Principal seat.

The Commission was appointed on 11.3.2008 for six months and was asked to report its finding within that period. But, despite several reminders from the government, Justice Pal has not completed his work and not submitted his report. For the tenth time, his tenure has been extended till June 2013. There is no guarantee that the inquiry shall be completed by this time.

It is a serious syndrome. If Justice Pal has no expertise or ability to complete the inquiry within the stipulated time, he should have been honest to go away from the assignment; because the delay in completion of the inquiry is injuriously expensive for the State.

One may not err if the delay seems to be a means to a continuous earning for the Judge in his retired days. Any retired judge heading any Commission of Inquiry like Justice Pal should be made answerable for draining out of the State Exchequer if he has accepted the appointment to conclude the inquiry within a given time; but has wanted and obtained extensions after extensions, taking thereby more money from the exchequer than what was originally estimated.

A Commission of Inquiry on the Commission of Inquiry that causes so much delay in concluding the inquiry is necessary to ensure timely conclusion of the inquiries that State is instituting in matters of urgent public interest.

Grand Reception given to victims of the gang of Samaja occupiers

Mirzapur_podium

Devi Prasanna Nayak and Subash Chandra Singh, President and General Secretary respectively of the trade union of the Samaja employees and Brajabhai, under whose stewardship the down going paper was brought back to rejuvenation around a decade ago, were given a grand reception in a public conference convened by ‘Save the Samaja Forum’ in a densely populated patch of rural Orissa at Mirjapur of Jajpur on May Day, 2013, immediately after they were released from judicial custody.

mirzapur_Pabitra

Pabitra Maharatha, coordinator of SSF initiated the public meeting with a brief description of how release of the trio has proved that for all times to come the miscreants cannot keep the law hoodwinked. He passed on to the participants in the conference the wishes of solidarity sent by eminent journalist Prasanta Patnaik, joint convener of SSF, who, busy in MUFP action against police atrocities on media persons covering the lower Suktel unrest, could not attend the conference.

Chaired by journalist Ranjit Raut, the event was addressed by the representative-in-chief of orissamatters.com Sri Subhas Chandra Pattanayak, the other convener of SSF. Welcoming the three victims of false allegations back to their freedom, Sri Pattanayak praised them for their prudent and principled role in dealing with the illegalities the Samaja employees are subjected to. He gave a detail depiction of how the paper founded by Pt. Gopabandhu, revered and remembered for humanitarianism, is being used against human rights of the employees and how unfair labor practices are rampant in the organization in absence of valid standing orders.

Mirzapur_SCP

Devi Prasanna, Subash and Brajabhai had to suffer loss of their liberty because of a nefarious design engineered by a combine of swindlers of the funds of the Samaja and a pack of police black sheep, taking advantage of a defective judicial system, where the primary court does not think it necessary to go beyond the assortment of accusations to be prima facie convinced that the forwarding officer is not influenced by the accuser, said Sri Pattanayak.

Educationist Benudhar Dobai, and eminent socio-political leaders of the locality Raghunath Das and Laxman Raut expressed solidarity with the trio in their just fight against oppression and against corruption in Utkalmani’s paper, the paper to which the people of Orissa have always emotionally helped.

mirzapur_brajabhai

In response to the reception, Brajabhai informed the public that his positive role in bettering the Samaja has led to exposure of the negative role played by fellows like Manubhai Patel and therefore, in nexus with a corrupt police they have coined concocted cases against him.

Subash Singh said, the workers and working journalists of the Samaja shall continue to treat the paper as their own and therefore, the looters of the Samaja fund and users of the paper in their own interest would continue to treat the employees as their enemies. But the working class shall win and the manipulators shall fail, he said.

Mirzapur_Devi P.Nayak

Devi Prasanna Nayak declared that he shall continue to oppose the killing of the spirit of Gopabandhu in the Samaja set up and thanked the general public for its tremendous support to the employees in their fight for justice.

Amongst others, educationist Binod Bihari Behera, Prashant Dwivedi, Sridhar Sahu,Subash Mishra, Purusottam Das, Kedar Deo, Uday Mallik, Jnanaranjan Aich, Bijay Kumar Das were conspicuous by their participation.

Youth leader Ranjan Deo proposed vote of thanks.

The name Kamakshya Nagar is an insult to the great battle for freedom led by Vir Baisnav: Prof. Abani Baral

vir baisnav

CPI leader Prof. Abani Kumar Baral, in addressing the celebrations of birth centenary of Vir Baisnav Charan Pattanayak at Bhubaneswar on 29 April 2013, has demanded that Kamakshyanagar be re-named Madhi, in memory of the freedom that Pattanayak had given it in leading the people’s war against the tyrant king of the ex-state of Dhenkanal.

The legendary leader of Prajamandal movement had declared war against the king of Dhenkanal and in that war, Madhi was liberated from the pernicious control of the king. So, in the history of India’s freedom movement, Madhi has a unique place. But the shrewd tyrant had wiped out the name of this historic place by changing its name from Madhi to Kamakshyanagar by the name of his son, before abdicating his throne.
Continuance of this name is an insult to the sacred memories of Vir Baisnav as well as to the martyrs this battle had given to the motherland, he pointed out while demanding that the name of Kamakshyanagar be changed back to Madhi.

CPI(M) leader Sivaji Pattanayak, Ex-Minister Prafulla Ghadei, MLA Prafulla Malik, MLA Navin Nanda and Minister Rajanikant Singh also agreed that Kamakshyanagar should be changed to Madhi in view of its historic uniqueness. Jogesh Chandra Tripathy presided over the meeting.

MUFP DEMANDS UNCONDITIONAL RELEASE OF AMITABH PATRA AND ARREST OF COPS RESPONSIBLE FOR THE BRUTAL ATTACK AGAINST THE JOURNALIST

under the freedom tree

The Media Unity for Freedom of Press ( MUFP) today staged a protest demonstration under the Freedom Tree near Jaidev Bhawan against the brutal police attack on a television journalist Amitabh Patra while he was covering the local agitation at Dunguripali in Lower Suktel project area in Bolangir on the 29th of May.

Sri Patra who is now receiving treatment at the Burla medical college hospital is still in police custody because he has been arrested on false charges that he was inciting the protesters ! The visuals captured by local media persons shows clearly how he was targeted by a group of policemen who beat him black and blue with lathis and kept kicking him even when he had fallen on the ground.

The MUFP has demanded immediate and unconditional release of Amitabh Patra as well as the identification and arrest of the police officials who were involved in the attack that left him with serious head injury. The media body has also demanded payment of compensation for or replacement of Sri Patra’s damaged video camera.

MUFP has strong reasons to believe that Sri Patra was targeted because he was recording the barbaric manner in which the police were beating up the peaceful protesters including young women with his camera. His camera was smashed before he was roughed up by a group of men in khaki who were reportedly drunk.

MUFP has threatened to resort to state-wide agitation if Amitabh Patra is not released unconditionally and no action taken against the policemen responsible for the brutal attack on him.

Over 30 scribes and photographers led by senior journalists Prasanta Patnaik and Rabi Das participated in today’s protest.

MUFP stands with TV scribe

The MUFP condemns the brutal attack by armed police on TV reporter Amitabh Patra on April 29 early morning who was doing his duty of covering an agitation against Lower Suktel Dam in Dunguripali of Balangiri district.

AMITABH PATRA_INJUREDHis TV camera has been smashed and he has sustained grievous injury on his head. No head scan has been done so far. Without any reason he has been arrested.

The MUFP demands the following:

1. Immediate and unconditional release of Amitabh Patra

2. Offering him proper medical treatment in a proper place with cost to the state

3. Restoration of his camera and returning the same to him in its original condition.

4. Arrest of police officials who have launched the brutal attack on him

5. Compensation for the injury and for loss of property

6. Release of other media persons including Lenin Ray of Nissan

6. Provide proper protection to media persons on duty in sensitive areas and on sensitive matters.

For MEDIA UNITY FOR FREEDOM OF PRESS (MUFP ), Presidium.
Prasanta Patnaik, Subhas Chandra Pattanayak, Gopal Mohapatra, Rabi Das,
Prafulla Das, Ashok Mohapatra, Dwinjen Padhi, Gourahati Das, Sampad Mohapatra, Dwijen Padhi, Sudhir Patnaik