SoPS has made Samaja a hub of misappropriation: An instance

Subhas Chandra Pattanayak

Lala Lajpat Rai’s New Delhi based Servants of the People Society (SoPS) having seized the Samaja newspaper by using a forged WILL of one of its founders Pandit Gopabandhu Das, has unleashed a reign of loot of the money that belongs to the people of Orissa, a glimpse of which forms the crux of this presentation.

It has an advertisement manager in the newspaper ‘Samaja” whose name is Priyabrata Mohanty. He is so close to the boss of SoPS that he occupies the General Manager chair, as and when possible, to create panic amongst the employees of Samaja by posing as its employer. Some of his such actions are questioned in the Labor Law forum.

We would come to that on a different day. But now, how this man is involved with money swindling by misusing his ad manager position would be focused upon, as an instance of corrupt practices going on in Samaja newspaper.

We have shown earlier in these pages that the miscreants that have seized the paper have been enjoying their clout with Orissa’s Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik. This is giving them a congenial environment to loot the Samaja.

Nexus with the CM
helps them carry out corruption

Because the officers in the fields and various institutional heads know of the nexus of these swindlers with the Chief Minister, they do not dare to say ‘no’ to whatever these fellows ask them to do.

cancelled cheque

Mark the above picture. It is the photocopy of a cheque that was issued by the DRDA office, Bhadrak, in favor of the Samaja, Balasore, on 23.3.2011 towards payment against an advertisement bill. After a complete year, the said cheque was cancelled by the Project Director – by then a new incumbent as discernible in the body of the cancelled cheque – and a new cheque bearing No. 060616 was issued as per order dated 19.4.2012, relevant portion of which is given here.cheque to Samaja cancelled for ch.to RoyThe order reads: “The ch. No – 026834 for Rs.21,384/- in favour of Samaja, Balasore may be cancelled and a fresh cheque – 060616 for Rs. 21,384 may be issued in favour (of) Sri Pramod Ray, District Correspondent, Samaj”, And the money was thus paid to Pramod Ray vide Voucher No.11, dated 19.4.2012.

Replacing the cheque originally given in favor of the Samaja by canceling the same on production by a reporter of the paper after lapse a complete financial year with another cheque given to the said reporter by his name by the Project Director of the District is blatantly illegal. The Project Director is a senior officer of the State and by virtue of his qualification and long experience as an administrative officer, he knows that such a step was not legal. Yet he did it on the same day the reporter wanted such a favor, because he knew of the nexus of the swindlers’ network with the Chief Minister of the State. The money that should have gone to the Samaja accounts, went to the private account of its reporter Pramod Ray.

pay by nameOnce this trick clicked, the Ad Manager Priyabrata Mohanty combined with Ray to divert Samaja ad dues to his personal accounts by generating advices to the advertisers to pay against the bills through Bank Drafts favoring Ray only. The picture on the margin vouches for this subterfuge.

And the money swindled through this arrangement is monstrous.

An instance

Advertisement Bill No. SCA/12-2013/5901 dated 06/07/12 is just an instance.

dubious bill 6.7.12

It was issued by Mohanty against an all edition BW Ad of Bhadrak Institute of Engineering and Technology, Barapada, Bhadrak that consumed 96 sq.cm of the paper on July 6, 2012. The bill amount was Rs.86,400.00 with a special discount of Rs. 3000.00, thus totaling Rs. 83, 400.00. The institute was asked by Mohanty to pay for the bill by issuing the bank draft in favor of Ray only. When the bill was legally required to be paid to the Samaja accounts, why the Ad manager diverted it to the personal account of Ray? We searched for the modus operandi behind this arrangement, and we were shocked to see that the sole purpose of this arrangement was misappropriation of at least Rs. 43,560.00 out of this bill. The legitimate bill, at the rate of Rs.415/- per sq.cm as per the tariff rate of 2012-13, should have been Rs.39,840.00; not 86,400.00 or Rs. 83,400.00 after special discount. If anything, therefore, it was a misappropriation of Rs. 43,560.00, which could not have materialized had payment cheque been issued in favor of the Samaja. Obviously Mohanty and Roy have shared the loot. The man of Mohanty, who prepared the bill might have also been tipped a bit to keep the swindling secret.

Another instance

Another instance shows that the corrupt practice is going on continuously.

Dubious Bill dt. 3.6.13We site Bill No. SCA/13-2014/2465 dated 03.06.2013.

The same man that had prepared the above cited bill dated July 6, 2012, has prepared this Bill too and Mohanty as Ad Manager has issued it.

It amounts to Rs.3,25,780.00 and claims Rs.2, 99, 780.00 after special discount of Rs.26,000.00 charging the same Institute – Bhadrak Institute of Engineering and Technology, for a display in color consuming 360 sq.cm. on June 3, 2013.

As per the paper’s Tariff rate for 2013-14, the legitimate bill amount should have been Rs.1,78,200.00 only, not Rs.3,25,780.00. So, here also, in terms of the net claim after discount, there is a clear possibility of misappropriation of Rs. 1,21,580.00 by the Mohanty Ray combine.

Yet another instance

The illicit nexus with the Chief Minister well-known to government servants, the Special Officer cum Sub-Collector, Bhadrak was also asked by Mohanty to pay against Bill No. SCA/13-2014/2469 of 23/05/13 by A/C Payee Bank draft favoring Ray. The said Sub-Collector could not dare to question as to why the payment should be made to Ray in stead of the Samaja, when it was a bill against advertisement published in that paper.smj_8

More harmful than this

We shudder when we feel that there is a process in practice in the Samaja which is more harmful than this syndrome of misappropriation. And, that is: False Advertisement Bills.

The highly inflated bills must be fake bills with the numbers and dates of the genuine bills against which payments must be being taken to Samaja records to hoodwink the audit as and when conducted or normal eyes of the auxiliary staff in the ad wing or vigilant eyes of the employees association. It prods us to apprehend that Priyabrata Mohanty within full knowledge of the fellows of SoPS that have seized the Samaja, has been running a parallel economy in the organization to exploit the impact of the paper for his personal monetary benefit, as his controlling bosses – members of SoPS – who themselves are involved with rabid misappropriation of Samaja funds – are also his patrons and protectors.

People of Orissa, out of their everlasting love for Utkalmani Pandit Gopabandhu Das have contributed their might to evolution of the Samaja to such a stature that it stands synonym to newspapers as a whole. The fellows who have been swindling money in its name, have infested it with right-reactionary conservatism and nefarious corruptions.

It is natural, therefore, for the right thinking people of Orissa to start social audit on its activities. We are glad that our step is pioneering in this regard.

New threat to Titilagarh from Thermal plant

CGNet Swara moderator S. Chowdhury has transmitted the version of Balakrishna Sandh of Titilagarh in a mail. It informs that the private Sahara company is trying to acquire lands on the bank of River Tel for a Thermal Power Plant it wants to commission soon. Titilagarh is marked for intolerable high temperature. Last year the mercury had exceeded 50 and if the Thermal Plant is allowed, the temperature would rise further.

It is intriguing that the Government officials are framing up false cases against whosoever refuses to give his/her land to the Company. Despite people’s case pending in the High Court of Orissa, Naveen Patnaik’s government is siding with Sahara to acquire the huge stretch of land by police force and nefarious tricks to the total detriment of the self-employed farming community’s interest.

He has send us the recorded version of Sri Sandh.

What is happening in ‘The Samaja’ when illegal occupiers have seized it fraudulently?

Subhas Chandra Pattanayak

The Servants of the People Society (SoPS) has not yet been able to prove that it has not seized Orissa’s premier newspaper ‘The Samaja’ by forging a WILL of its founder Pandit Gopabandhu Das.

But on complaint from ‘Save the Samaja Forum’ (SSF), when the Registrar of Newspapers for India (RNI) asked the Additional District Magistrate (ADM) of Cuttack to enquire into and report on legitimacy of the claim of ownership by SoPS, the Chief Minister of Orissa was used by the illegal occupiers to create a climate for the ADM to abandon his enquiry midway and to submit a spurious report with no specific answer to the query.

SSF has written to RNI to discard the ADM’s report as spurious and to institute a fresh enquiry at his end, as the Law does not permit any newspaper to run under fake ownership; and, as any enquiry by any officer or agency of Orissa Government would not be reliable because of the illegal occupiers’ direct nexus with the Chief Minister.

A reliable document reveals that there was a deal of clandestine money amounting half a crore of rupees between Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik and the then SoPS chief Manubhai Patel and the same illicit relationship between the both continues till date, as otherwise a huge land reserved for a very important public purpose by the State Government could never have been given to a protege of Patel for a Hotel at Bhubaneswar in the neighborhood of the State Forensic Laboratory at throwaway price and the State Government could not have sat idly so far over constitutional objection to this illegality by the Comptroller and Auditor General of India.

When the SOPS is in such nasty nexus with the Chief Minister of Orissa, the occupiers of the Samaja have been enjoying immunity against inhumane exploitation of workers. The workers have been kept under such intimidation that seldom they object to their exploitation. When someone prays for fair pay he gets thwarted out of his job.

Gagan ParidaLet me give you a single instance. Gagan Parida is an employee of the Samaja for last 30 years. He works through out the night to make bundles of the paper for despatch to various destinations. This is a very essential job in the establishment and consumes his time from 5 in the evening to 5 in the morning. Though he has worked for 30 years and has become old, he has not been regularized and not been put to a time scale. Thus he is debarred from Dearness Allowance, Provident Fund benefits, Health Care benefits, House rent allowance during his employment period and would be debarred from all the welfare provisions including Gratuity and Pension after his employment, which the Labor Laws and specifically the Law for newspaper employees offer.

Parida is not alone in this category of employees of the Samaja. At least 14 of his type have moved the Labor Laws Implementation Authority to intervene. Their allegation is: They all have been debarred from entering into their workplace, as they prayed the management for regularization in service with retrospective effect and for regular pay as newspaper employees are entitled to. Thus they have been de facto dismissed.

But the political clout the illegal occupiers of the Samaja have, has stood a obstacle to admission of their allegation into conciliation even.

Gopabandhu was a paragon of all humane virtues. He was a personification of pity and concern for human beings. To save people from exploitation, he had been leading mass awareness campaigns and The Samaja newspaper was established by him as a part of this campaign. In his paper, the illegal occupiers have been perpetrating such inhuman exploitation.

Sad,

Krushna was a concept of Revolution, not a God

Subhas Chandra Pattanayak

Krushna was not a God. He was a character conceived and created by the revolutionary poet – Muni Vyasa – in his epic Mahabharata, epitomizing his concept of revolution against tyranny and exploitation.

He was generated by Vyasa’s thinking elites – represented by Devaki and Basudev – who, because of their opposition to oppressive autocrat Kansa, were being incarcerated time and again. And in the prison, they were giving shape to their concept of revolution, which again, every time, was being crushed within the prison compounds, before reaching the public.

In fact, it is the elites – persons of erudition, knowledge, ability to analyze socio-economic phenomena – that create revolutions against oppression and exploitation, against machinations in use by rulers to keep the people suppressed and subjugated.

Devaki and Basudev, the sister and brother-in-law respectively of Kansa, were, thus, symbolic of the then elite, who had tried to create a revolution against patriarch autocracy practiced by Kansa. All their attempts to create a revolution against the oppressive system were violently crushed by the tyrant Kansa. Yet, while perishing in his prison, they were giving shape to their revolutionary concept.

Amidst the masses

After seven such attempts failed, they felt that unless the people in general were involved with the revolution of their concept, they will not succeed in their endeavor.

So they decided to take their revolutionary concept into the midst of the common toiling masses.

On the eighth attempt, they succeeded in putting their concept at the disposal of the masses, symbolically projected as the cowherds.

This concept was christened Krushna, meaning the one that attracts everybody (Akarshayati Iti Krushnah) and when this Krushna grew up, it gave birth to such a massive mass upsurge that the tyrant Kansa died in fear, absolutely unable to face the challenge.

Kansas gallore

The same practice of crushing progressive revolutions by the rabid reactionary capitalists by implicating the revolutionaries in false cases, by incarcerating them and torturing them in the prisons, is galore everywhere including India.

If emancipation is essential, one is to understand the tricks of misleading the people aboub Krushna through concocted legends, to understand what Krushna really was and and address oneself to what he stood for in Mahabharata, instead of staying misguided by exploitive machinations that willfully and mischievously project Krushna as a God.

Before that, a difference

Before understanding Krushna, it is essential to know the background of his creator.

Vyasa, the creator of Krushna, was a Muni, not a Rushi.

When a person known for the brags that he has seen the God and the Veda being delivered by the God was called a Rushi (linked to ‘Drush’ – a seer), a person who was known for his views based on deep analysis was being called a Muni (linked to ‘Manana’, literally meaning ‘deep study’).

Vyasa was a Muni

Vyasa was a Muni. He was born out of rape of his mother Satyavati belonging to boatsman tribe by a Rushi namely Parasara, while she was ferrying him across a river.

The Vedic society was patriarch and in that society, under Vedic provisions claimed to have been ordained by the Almighty, any Arya male was entitled to rape any woman he desires, to beget a son; and when a son was born, to take away that son from that woman.

So, when Vyasa was born, Parasara had taken him away from his mother and given him education in the Vedic system.

But Vyasa had never forgotten the injury caused to his mother and to his own childhood by the patriarch system perpetrated by his father – a Rushi – in the name of Vedic privileges and hence he had refused the Vedic system pivoted on and preposterously contributing to blind belief.

He had emerged as an epoch making socio-political scientist whose works and words were based on practical analysis of discernible phenomena and intelligent interpretation of ancient wise words, if any, coined by the few progressive elements even in the Vedic system. He was therefore revered as Muni Vyasa.

An epic of war against oppression

As he had never forgotten the rape of his mother by Parasara, whom the Vedic system had projected as the grand son of Brahma, the greatest of the Gods whom creation of the universe was credited to, he created his Mahabharata as an epic of extermination of patriarchy and socio-economic oppressions it had legitimized.

Begins at Nahusa

In the first event placed in his epic is the episode of Nahusa. Nahusa was a man who was chosen by the Gods to rule over them, as their king Indra had been banished from the throne for his brutality and no God was capable of ruling over the rest.

In placing this matter before the public, Vyasa showed that human beings are better than the Gods.

He then proceeded to show how power corrupts.

Nahusa was chosen by the Gods to be their king, because he was a man of all humane virtues. But after occupying the most powerful position, he became too proud not to indulge in corruption. Power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely, as they say.

Being consecrated as the king of the Gods – Indra, Nahusa wanted the queen of the Gods – Sachi – in his bed, which Sachi refused.

Then Nahusa tried to rape her. She ran in panic and besought refuge at citadels of all leading Gods including Brahma. But none of them dared to come to her rescue in fear of Nahusa’s wrath.

Only a Muni like Vyasa – Muni Narada – came to her rescue and bravely obstructed Nahusa. He castigated the new Indra – Nahusa – for the sin he was committing and dissuaded him from chasing Sachi, saying him that he should stay away from the wife of the dethroned Indra as that would be the worst of the sins. “Nibartaya Manah Papat Para Dara Vimarsanat” is what Vyasa uttered in the mouth of Narada. And, Nahusa, understanding the mistake he was going to commit, repented and prostrated before Sachi by accepting her as a mother.

Ends at Jaduvansha

Begun from this major episode, the Mahabharata ended with extinguishment of the clan of Krushna (Jaduvansha), who acquiring privileged positions that the popularity of Krushna had given them, had plunged themselves into enjoyment of sex to the extent of fetching by force any daughter of any king they liked.

By exterminating the entire Jaduvansha, Vyasa mercilessly punished the misusers of revolution.

Class War

And, in between the Nahusa episode and the Jaduvansha episode, he depicted a class war between the patriarch Kaurava autocracy and the matriarch Pandava democracy and made the patriarch autocracy – epitomized by Dhrutarastra and his son Duryodhana – obliterated in a war called ‘Mahabharata”, wherein classes were distinctly polarized.

In what is called Bishwarupa of Krushna, he showed how his revolution called Krushna was a synonym of everything best in the Universe.

His Krushna was the society in its entirety, in whose mouth, Vyasa had called upon human beings to extricate themselves from the labyrinths of religions as every religion was an obstacle to emancipation. “Discard all the religions (Sarva Dharman Parityajya) and accept me as the final refuge” (Mamekam Sharanam Braja), he – the epitome of the society – had said.

This word “Mamekam” was not difficult to understand in the context of Krushna’s Vishwarupa. Yet, it was further annotated when the supreme projection of Matriarchy – Devi Durga – declared “Aham Rastri Sangamani” – I am the collective power of the people that form the State.

We, the people of Orissa

And, on this perception only, we the people of Orissa have rechristened the greatest son of our soil – Gurudev Buddha, the first founder of world outlook beyond all mischiefs of sectarianism – as our national deity Sri Jagannatha and equated him with Vyasa’s Krushna.

When to us, “Nilachale Jagannatha Sakshat Dakshina Kalika” (In Nilachala Puri, Jagannatha is Dakshina Kalika), we also equate Krushna with Kali the most powerful symbol of matriarchy, by saying, “Kalou Kali, Kalou Krushna, Kalou Gopala Kalika”.

So the combined force of the people – Kali, as announced in “Aham Rastri Sangamani” – is Krushna, the revolution, as annotated in “Akarshayati Iti Krushnah”, gets sharpened by being adopted by the masses in the grassroots, as symbolized by the word “Gopala”.

And, such a revolution takes birth in the pernicious prisons of oppressive rulers.

Wish, it takes birth in every prison

To us, therefore, Krushna is the revolution that a poet of India – Muni Vyasa – had conceived of, against politics of tyranny and exploitation, that had given the clarion call to discard dilly-dally in matters of class war (“Kshyudram Hrudayadaurbalyam Tyaktotishtha Parantapa”) and to fight the class enemy come what may (“Hato Ba Preapsyasi Swargam Jitwa Ba Bhokshase Mahim“) and to achieve emancipation by exterminating the enemy (“Tasmaduttishtha Kaunteya Yuddhaya Kruta Nishchayah”). Under his scheme, everybody has a right to work (“Karmanyebadhikaraste“) sans any selfish claim on the result thereof (“Ma Phalesu Kadachana”), because such claim would help individual avarice spread to the detriment of societal collectivism and defeat the cause of emancipation. Thus, Vyasa’s Krushna was for a society where everybody works to the best of his/her ability for the Society and the Society fulfills his/her essential necessities for fair living.

We, therefore, celebrate the birth of Krushna and wish this Krushna to take birth every day in every prison of tyrants in every nation.

Samaja in the maze of forgery: RNI moved to reject ADM’s spurious report and conduct enquiry in right earnest, as Law does not allow any newspaper to run under fake ownership

Subhas Chandra Pattanayak

Servants of the People Society, New Delhi, has illegally captured the Oriya daily ‘Samaja’ by taking advantage of a WILL of one of its founders Pt. Gopabandhu Das forged by his protege Lingaraj Mishra in nexus with Radhanath Rath, both of who had benefited from being successive editors of the paper and, induced to Orissa cabinet by virtue of their association with the powerful daily, had gained immensely in political life. They, in fact, had transformed the paper from basically a social service utility to a power-politics game field, where only the religious revivalists and right-reactionaries were / are conspicuous by their presence.

This transformation has played a major role in strengthening right-reactionary political set-ups in Orissa. Naturally, therefore, the present chief minister, who is known more for being a server of the interest of mega industrial houses like POSCO/Vedanta/Tata/Jindal etc than of the interest of indigenous Oriyas, has found in it an obliging ally. This nexus is demoralizing the officers so much that a district labor officer – P.K.Mohapatra – did not dare to wake up against unfair labor practices rampant in the Samaja establishment despite being notified for several months, and, instead of punishment for this stark violation of his duties as the area labor officer, he was rewarded with a promotion, to the detriment of morality of fellow officers.

Sadly, the syndrome has expanded to other departments too. It is horrific to see that government officers are being forced to serve the interest of the illegal occupiers of this paper by the circumstances created by the Chief Minister himself. A glaring instance has come to light when the ADM of Cuttack, asked by the Registrar of Newspapers for India (RNI) to enquire into alleged illegitimacy of declared owners of the Samaja, had to stop enquiring midway to feed the RNI with a spurious report, after Save the Samaja Forum (SSF) filed a Writ Case in the Orissa High Court seeking a directive to the said ADM to act diligently on the RNI’s direction. The shenanigans marked in the ADM’s office convince us that the ADM was under pressure to rush his spurious report to RNI in order only to render the Writ petition inconsequential.

And, curiously, the ADM had to abandon his enquiry midway under pressure. From documents obtained under RTI, it transpires that, the ADM had asked the Government Pleader of Cuttack to give his legal opinion in the matter; but before the GP could prepare his legal opinion, the ADM closed his enquiry in utmost hurry and without even asking the raisers of the allegation to substantiate their allegation, rushed his report to the RNI. He was, as our sources say, under alarming pressure from above to close the enquiry and send his report to RNI as quickly as possible. Therefore, he had to abandon the enquiry midway.

It is noteworthy that only a day after the ADM was notified by the Advocate General of the Writ Case filed by SSF, he had to entertain a fake WILL of Gopabandhu submitted to him by illegal occupiers of the Samaja and without any enquiry into whether or not it was a genuine copy of the WILL, when absence of any semblance of genuine certification of the true copy, if it was so, of the WILL was crying for such an enquiry, the ADM rushed his spurious report to RNI, within 4 days of being notified of the Writ Case. The ADM was so much overwhelmed by the pressure from above that he did not informed the SSF of closure of the enquiry and submission of his report on July 5, 2013 even when he received a memo from SSF on July 16, 2013, demanding expeditious enquiry.

The SSF has raised a complaint against the spurious report of the ADM and demanded for a fresh enquiry by the RNI as the Press Laws do not allow a newspaper to run under fake ownership.

For documentation, the SSF letter to RNI is given below:

No. 14/CO/2013 Date 20.08.2013

To The Registrar of Newspapers for India (RNI)
(Ministry of Information and Broadcasting)
West Block 8, Wing 2, R.K. Puram,
New Delhi-110066

Sub: Complaint against continuance of illegality in publication of Oriya Daily ‘The Samaj’, under false ownership.

Ref: RNI letter No. 18/177/2012-R3 dated November 20, 2012 read with Save the Samaja forum letter dated 05.10.2012 and letter of A.D.M., Cuttack bearing No. 1353 dated. 05.07.2013

Sir,
We the undersigned are reporters of at least forty years standing. On behalf of “Save the Samaja Forum”, we had urged upon you to please intervene and halt the illegal publication of the Oriya daily “Samaja” (Cuttack) under false ownership of Servants of the People Society, Lajpat Nagar, New Delhi.
The Society above named has been using a false and fabricated WILL of original owner of the paper, late Pt. Gopabandhu Das claimed to have been dictated on his deathbed, just before he breathed his last on 17.6.1928. Like all others of Orissa, we too were mislead to believe the above claim to be factual, because the people who forged the WILL were known for their close proximity to Gopabandhu and had gained public esteem by successively occupying the editorship of the paper. It was beyond our perception that such persons of politico-social eminence could have resorted to naked forgery to occupy the popular paper of the late leader.
But as no sin can be hidden for all time to come, Subhas Chandra Pattanayak, Representative-in-Chief of Orissa’s premiere website orissamatters.com stumbled upon the “exact photo copy of Gopabandhu’s last will” while browsing old papers of the 1980s in professional pursuit. That “exact photo copy of the Will” did not carry the signature of Pt. Gopabandhu Das. Shocked by the unexpected discovery, he conducted a thorough research and found various documents that made him suspect that the Samaja is licensed to run under fake ownership. The forgers had operated under the umbrella of the Servants of the People Society and from their time, the said society has kept the forgery a secret and has fetched tremendous financial benefits by continuously cheating the RNI over ownership of the paper
in sharp contravention of and blatant disregard to the governing law. He exposed the matter in orissamatters.com. That constituted the base of Save the Samaja Forum, which wanted the Servants of the People Society and/or the Samaja to remove the suspicion the stumbled upon “exact photo copy of the WILL” was creating. But they kept mum. They had inserted a quarter-page advertisement in page 1 of the daily Samaja in appealing the public to ignore the allegation raised by Save the Samaja Forum; but they never came out with the genuine WILL, if any, to clear the doubt over ownership. This led the undersigned to attract your kind attention to the dubious ownership of the paper.
We are thankful to you for having initiated immediate action on our complaint. You were pleased to request the A.D.M. of Cuttack to conduct an investigation into the matter and report on action taken (Annexure-1).
But the A.D.M. has sent you his report without any inquiry (Annexure-2).
We had met the A.D.M. many times personally to request him to conduct the inquiry as expeditiously as possible. But regretfully the A.D.M. has sent you the report under Annexure-2 without any inquiry and without even asking us to substantiate our allegation.
It is a matter of great concern that the A.D.M. has, behind our back, entertained a fake WILL of Gopabandhu submitted by the illegal occupiers of the Samaja, even though that copy of the so called WILL is not a valid certified copy of the said WILL.
We have obtained on 13.08.2013 the photocopies of the WILL submitted by the wrongful occupiers of the Samaja through their General Manager by using RTI. A copy thereof is enclosed (Annexure -3) for your kind perusal. It is not a certified copy, whereas we have documents in our possession that proves that, this WILL submitted by the illegal occupiers of the Samaja to the A.D.M. is a fake WILL. Had the A.D.M. asked us to substantiate our allegation we could have submitted the relevant documents.
It is necessary to say here that, the A.D.M., Cuttack had asked the Tahasildar of Cuttack Sadar by his letter No. 62/Gen. & Misc. dated 04.01.2013 to inquire into our allegation and report within a week. The Tahasildar gave his response to A.D.M. in his letter No. 4584 dated 21.06.2013. The A.D.M. then wrote a letter to the government pleader, Cuttack on 25.06.2013 vide No. 2985 requesting him to examine the documents and submit his legal opinion (Annexure-4).
As it was clear to us that the A.D.M. was not acting in right earnest on your letter referred to above we preferred a Writ Petition in the Hon’ble High Court of Orissa seeking a direction to the A.D.M. for compliance of your orders. The Writ Case filed on July 01, 2013 bears the No. W.P. (C) 14507 of 2013. As per judicial custom in vogue, the copy thereof was given to the Advocate General of Orissa instantly who also immediately informed the A.D.M. of the case.
In order to render the Writ Case inconsequential, without waiting for the legal opinion of the government pleader that he had sought for (Annexure-4), the A.D.M. has sent you the misleading and wrongful report on 5th of July, 2013 vide his letter referred to above (Annexure-2).
The crux of the issue is fake ownership of the Samaja based on a forged WILL of Pt. Gopabandhu Das. In order to continue to print and publish the Samaja, the Servants of the People Society is to prove that the WILL of Pt. Gopabandhu Das which constitute the base of its ownership over the paper, is genuine. If they fail to prove the genuineness of the WILL they have produced, they must be debarred from publishing the daily Samaja under their ownership. The law does not allow continuance of publication of a newspaper under false and fake ownership.
Therefore, and specifically as the A.D.M. has blatantly failed in his duty to conduct necessary inquiry and has accepted a fake WILL as genuine to mislead you, we request you to please reject the wrong report of the A.D.M. and to please stop publication of the Oriya daily ‘The Samaja’ under false ownership till at least the Servants of the People Society proves that the WILL they have produced before the ADM of Cuttack is genuine and on the basis of the same, their ownership over the Samaja is also genuine.
Kind Regards,

Sd/- Subhash Chandra Pattanayak
Sd/- Prasanta Patnaik

(Joint conveners of Save the Samaja Forum)

Immortal Pt. Raghunath Panigrahi

Pt. Raghunath Panigrahi on the pyre
I stand silently in your honor, immortal Pt. Raghunath Panigrahi!

I suffer sever shortage of words to offer my oblation to you; and I know, how much I say, it will never be the last oblation.

I am only one of crores of Oriyas, each of who had a heart that you reigned over.

But, I know, I have a corner in my heart where your rule shall continue for ever.

Subhas Chandra Pattanayak

MUFP strongly condemns gang rape of Mumbai photo-journalist; Demands exemplary action.

BHUBANESWAR, AUGUST 24, 2013: The Media Unity for Freedom of Press (MUFP) is deeply shocked and anguished over the horrific gangrape of a 22-year old fellow journalist in Mumbai while she was on an assignment with her male colleague on Thursday evening.

While joining the nationwide protests against the crime and the demand for the harshest possible to its perpetrators, MUFP wishes the young media colleague who is still in hospital an early recovery.

MUFP sees the the Mumbai gangrape not only as a barbarous and beastly attack on a woman’s dignity but also an intimidatory act that would aggravate the sense of insecurity among all working women who step out of their homes to earn a living.MUFP also demands for and the demand for the harshest possible pinishmnt to its perpetrators, MUFP wishes the young media colleague who is still in hospital an early recovery.

Today more and more young women are joining the profession of journalism which had remained a male domain for years. They are willing to accept tough assignments and go the extra mile to achieve excellence.

While conceding that the Mumbai gangrape incident may work as an disincentive to many of our young women colleagues, MUFP hopes they would stand up against such despicable acts both as individuals and journalists.

MUFP also appeals to the people at large to do their bit to help our daughters, sisters and mothers live and work in a safer environment and not hesitate to risk their own safety to ensure no harm is caused to them by abominable beasts that lurk around us.

MUFP strongly supports the silent protest rally being organised in Bhubaneswar by women journalists and photojournalists at 4.30 pm on Sunday and requests all members of the media fraternity to join it without fail.

HIGH COURT BENCH IN WESTERN ORISSA – AN OVER VIEW: By Sri Gobardhan Pujari, Advocate, Rourkela

[There is no logic in not establishing a permanent Bench of Orissa High Court in Western Orissa. No judgment of any court and no member of any bar should be allowed to derail the right of the people to get justice sans hurdles. Absence of benches of the High Court is a very great hurdle for justice. Therefore, we in ORISSA MATTERS have always supported the demand for a bench of Orissa High Court in Western Orissa. These pages carry our views on various dates like Feb. 3, 2009,Sept. 29, 2010,August 31, 2011, Jan. 23, 2012
Now as a historic solidarity amongst the inhabitants of Western Orissa in demand for the High Court Bench is so well defined, we deem it proper to post an over view on the issue from the pen of eminent lawyer and activist Sri Gobardhan Pujari, which, we are sure, will be of immense utility in course of settling the issue. Editor]

There is unrest amongst lawyers of Western Orissa and they are demanding for a permanent bench of Orissa HIGH Court.

Rourkela and Bolangir Bar are demanding bench in their respective places. On the other hand the advocates of other places are demanding the bench in any place of Western Orissa. This issue can be addressed by considering the origin and development of Orissa High Court.

Cuttack, Balasore, Puri and Anugul were the four districts consisting of Orissa Division under Bengal. In 1905, Sambalpur district was transferred to Orissa Division from Central provinces. Thus these five districts constituted the Orissa Division were transferred to the province of Bihar. These districts were under Patna High Court.

On 9.02.1916, the Patna High Court, invoking the power vested under the Letters Patent, ordained that one or more Judges of the High Court would visit Orissa by way of circuit wherever the Chief Justice from time to time appoint, in order to exercise in respect of cases arising in Orissa jurisdiction and power vested in the High Court.

Thus to deliver justice at door step even during the British Raj the decision of the Patna High Court was praise worthy and the people of Orissa became jubilant.

The then Chief Justice of Patna High Court Edward Chamiers and Justice Sharfuddin constituted the Circuit Bench and had the first sitting in May, 1916.
Thus the people of Orissa, even during the British period got justice delivery system in twenties of 20th Century. But that did not fulfil the aspiration of the people.

The people were fighting for a seperate state which became a reality on 1.4.1936. Still Orissa had no separate High Court. The people of Orissa had to wait till India got independence and the Garjats popularly known as States merged with Union of India.

Establishment of Orissa High Court

In 1948 every state had a separate High Court save and except Assam and Orissa. In April, 1948 Assam High Court was inaugurated and Orissa High Court was inaugurated on the 26th July, 1948 by the Chief Justice of India Hon’ble H. J. Kania and the meeting was presided over by Hon’ble Mr. Asaf Ali, Bar-at-Law, the then Governor of Orissa. The other dignitaries attended the inaugural function included Dr. K. N. Katju, the then Governor of Bengal and former Governor of Orissa, Chief Justice of Patna High Court Hon’ble C. M. Agarwal, Sir S. M.Bose, Advocate General of Bengal and Sir Sultan Ahmed of Patna. Before the Orissa High Court came into being, All Orissa Lawyers Association had come into being on 27th March, 1948 and the said conference was inaugurated by Dr. K. N. Katju, the then Governor of Orissa. In this inaugural address his Excellency Dr. Katju had said-

“The comradeship of the Bar is one of the strongest phenomena in the world. I don’t think such fine fellowship and espirit de corps exists in any other profession. Members of the Bar spend their life seemingly in perpetual contention and rivalry, but the mutual regard and esteem and genuine affection which they entertain for each other is really one of the most beautiful things in the world. Other people find it hard to believe. Of a fellow member who by dint of merit and ability achieves success and fame, every one in profession feels proud indeed. The brotherhood of the Bar is not circumscribed by any parochial considerations or geographical limits. It transcends all barriers of race and country and language. It is a fraternity which rightfully claims to be almost all pervasive and everywhere true to its traditions it endeavours to promote the administration of justice between man and man without fear and favour, with the utmost impartiality, unaffected by any ulterior considerations.

High Court of Ex-States

Just before the independence of India the rulers of Athagarh, Athamallik, Bamra, Baramba, Bastar, Baudh, Bonai, Changbhakar, Chhuikhadan, Dasapalla, Dhenkanal, Gangpur, Hindol, Jashpur, Kalahandi, Kanker, Kawardha, Keonjhar, Khairagarh, Khandapara, Kharswan, Korea, Nandagoan, Narsinghpur, Nayagarh, Nilagiri, Pallahara, Patna, Raigarh, Rairakhol, Sakti, Sarangarh, Seraikela, Sonepur, Surguja, Talcher, Tigiria and Udaipur resolved to constitute a Common High Court and the Resident of Eastern States had issued a Kharita to Maharaja Rajendra Narayan Singh Deo Maharaja of Patna and other rulers which reads as under.

“It gives me much pleasure to inform you by means of this Kharita that, in view of the active interest displayed by you in co-operative measures for the administration of your State and the welfare of your subjects and of the fact that you have elected to join the scheme for a Common High Court for the Orissa and Chhattishgarh States as approved by His Excellency the Crown Representative, His Excellency has decided to relinquish, for so long as you continue to participate in the said scheme for a Common High Court, the requirement imposed by your Sanand that persons sentenced to death shall be given every facility for submitting a petition of mercy to the Resident. Nothing in this Kharita shall be construed as a conferring any authority in respect of a criminal case in which the person accused is a European, a European British subject, an American or a servant of the Crown.”

The principal seat of the said High Court was at Raigarh and hardly it had sittings in some places for once or twice including Bolangir. As on date, there is neither any permanent or circuit bench of any High Court in any of those states.

Circuit Bench of Orissa High Court
mooted by Orissa Lawyers

After the enactment of Advocates Act and constitution of the Bar Councils it was considered not necessary to continue with the All Orissa Lawyers’ Association. The last conference was held at Puri where late Biswanath Pasayat was elected as President and Late Gangadhar Mohapatra of Puri (popularly known as Gangu Bhaina and the Law College at Puri is named after him) as the Secretary. The said Association became defunct. However the leading lawyers of the State in the helm of affairs of the Bar Council of India and Orissa State Bar Council considered it expedient to re-activate the All Orissa Lawyers’ Association as the functioning of the Bar Council was confined to powers vested to it under the Advocates Act, 1961.

But there are areas where the lawyers must act. Accordingly All Orissa Lawyers’ Association was given a re-birth in a conference held at Berhampur on 28th and 29th December, 1980. It was one of the most representative Conference of lawyers. The moving force of the conference was late Ranjit Mohanty, Bar-at-Law, the then Chairman, Bar Council of India, the leading members of Orissa State Bar Council like Sri Arijit Passayat, Sarat Chandra Mohapatra, Lingaraj Rath, Arjunlal Agrawal, former Advocate General Ashok Dash, Gangadhar Rath and other prominent lawyers OF High Court Bar Association like Bipin Bihari Ratho, C.Barman Murthy, Srinibas Mishra, Raghunath Das etc. and President and Secretary of various Bar Association of Orissa and other leading lawyers of the State.

Unanimous resolution

After due deliberation the Conference adopted unanimous resolution to have circuit Bench of Orissa High Court at Sambalpur and Berhampur which had full support of the members of Orissa State Bar Council and High Court Bar Association.

This resolution rekindled the hope of the people for justice at door step.

However, the members of Bolangir expressed resentment and did not associate with the Association.

Fissure creeps in

Although the Lawyers of the State pleaded for Circuit Bench in two places neither the Government of the day nor the High Court took any step to give effect to the wishes of the Lawyers.

The Lawyers of Sambalpur and Berhampur felt restless and resorted to agitation and strike continued for months. Even then the demands of the lawyers were ignored.

In the last week of December, 1990 the All Orissa Lawyers, Association held its annual conference at Raygada. The atmosphere was charged as lawyers of Sambalpur and Berhampur were on agitation. There was genuine feeling of the lawyers that the Judges of the High Court were primarily responsible for the inaction as holding Circuit Bench was within the prerogative of the Chief Justice and the High Court is ignoring their just demand.

Some further thought that the advocates of the High Court Bar are putting undue pressure on the Judges of the High Court.

Thus, the lawyers of the agitating Bar made undesirable remarks against the Judges and leading lawyers of the High Court Bar who were guests in the conference.

This unfortunate incident led to open opposition to the movement by the High Court Bar and even the Judges also took it personal. It was reflected in different ways. Lawyers of Jeypore were encouraged to demand for a Circuit Bench. Ultimately the whole movement was diluted when even the most insignificant Bar demanded a Circuit Bench.

The after effect of Raygada Conference is that the unity of lawyers which was achieved at Berhampur Conference was given a fatal blow, the relation between Bar and Bench was marred and All Orissa Lawyers’ Conference lost its importance as the symbol of the voice of the lawyers community of the state.

Genuine aspiration of the people will never die

The genuine aspiration of the people cannot be killed or suppressed for all times to come. In any movement there are ups and downs. Only night can give birth to a day. When the aspiration of the people was gaining momentum the members of Bargarh Bar called a meeting of the Bar Associations of Western Orissa on 30.04.2006. For the first time the members of Sambalpur and Bolangir Bar shared one platform to address the issue and took the prudent and positive steps in accepting the unanimous resolution adopted in the convention which reads as under:

This convention/assembly of lawyers is of unanimous view that the people of Western Orissa are entitled to have a permanent Bench of Orissa High Court in Western Orissa for speedy disposal of litigations. This convention notes with great concern that the people in general and Advocates in particulars have been agitating for the same but a single voice has not emerged which is suiting the purpose of persons who are against the establishment of a permanent Bench in Western Orissa in such situation this Assembly of Advocates, it is resolved that no individual Bar Association shall demand for the establishment of a bench in any particular place. All Bar Associations shall work unitedly for a bench in any place in Western Orissa. Hence it is resolved as here under :-

“This convention/assembly of Advocates of Western Orissa held on 30.04.2006 at Bargarh calls upon the Govt. of Orissa/ High Court of Orissa/ Govt of India/Supreme Court of India to establish a bench of Hon’ble High Court of Orissa in any suitable place of Western Orissa before the commencement of monsoon session of Orissa Assembly.

This Assembly further requests the Advocates in general and Bar Associations of Western Orissa in particular not to make any demand for a permanent bench of High Court in any particular place or to take up any agitation programmes in this regard.

This Assembly further resolves to achieve the creation of a bench of Orissa High Court in any place within Western Orissa and a steering committee is constituted who shall correspond with different authorities and to decide the agitation programmes to achieve the aforesaid objective.

This Assembly further resolves that the President of all the Bar Associations of Western Orissa shall be the members of the steering committee.

This Assembly further resolves that the President of District Bar Association, Bargarh shall be the Convener of the steering committee.

This Assembly further resolves to send copy of this resolution to the High Court of Orissa/Govt. of Orissa/Supreme Court of India/Govt of India/ all the Bar Associations of Western Orissa/different Print & Electronics Media.

Emergence of a movement

The resolution threw a new light and hope and had a positive impact in every spectrum of the society. All bars of Western Orissa identified with the steering Committee and espoused the cause of a Bench in any place of Western Orissa. The strength of unity was visible as common man started taking interest on this movement.

The Committee made attempt to make the movement broad based and called the peoples’ representatives in the Assembly and Parliament and all political parties to associate with the movement.

In fact the M.L.As including the cabinet Ministers and M.Ps and all political parties supported the cause, some of them attended the meetings called by steering committee.

The effect of this development was felt when the delegation of the steering Committee met the Chief Minister of Orissa.

The Chief Minister himself witnessed the M.L.As from all political parties accompanying the delegates and remarked, “You have own half of the battle”.

The Second gain was that Bolangir Bar de facto accepted the All Orissa Lawyers’ Association in its representative capacity. This became evident in the meeting of the steering Committee held at Bolangir Bar.

The President of All Orissa Lawyers’ Association was a member of the steering Committee and as such he was present in the meeting. Sri Panda, the President was not occupying a seat in the dais with a view not to antagonize the members of Bolangir Bar. But when Mr. Narasingha Mishra, the former Law Minister and leading member of Bolangir Bar noticed this, he requested the President of Bolangir Bar to escort Sri Panda to the dais. This incident is significant in many ways.

By then the All Orissa Lawyers’ Association had already accepted the establishment of the Bench in any place of Western Odisha. Thus the earlier resolution of the Association for the Bench at Sambalpur was modified to that extent. It was clear that all bars will fight united for the establishment of a Bench in any place and at appropriate time any bar can place all records or submit as regards suitability of any place is concern.

A set back

The achievement of Bargarh Convention was short lived. It could not keep all political parties together for a long time. The political parties got separated and started blaming each other for not achieving the goals. A peculiar development took place in the mean time. It was resolved in the steering Committee to oppose the seat of power till the seat of the Bench is decided.

This decision was unanimous although some members of the steering Committee were also from the ruling party.

Just after eight days the Chief Minister was to address a party meeting at Bargarh and the Party started mobilizing to bring people by bus and truck to the meeting place. At one end in furtherance to the resolution the members of the steering committee gave bandh call which led to a direct confrontation with the ruling party.

Some leading members of the steering Committee displayed loyalty to the Party, and acted contrary to the resolution of the Bar. They even did not hesitate to critise the steering committee.

This is the first major set back to the movement and it took time to reconcile to the situation. Secondly fundamentalism within the Bar also affected adversely. Some members of some Bar advocated to fight independently for the establishment of the Bench in a particular place and the local leadership failed to check them. Thus the division was visible to naked eye.

There was change in the attitude of the High Court. It is understood that request of the Chief Minister to the Chief Justice of the High Court did not receive favour and the same was turned down.

The state Govt. constituted a Commission headed by Justice C. R. Pal to dwell into the matter; but Bar has boycotted the Commission.

The Commission has failed to submit the report although more than two years have passed.

As on date, the Bar Associations of Western Odisha are not united. The Division is manifested in different ways. But the movement is continuing with symbolic strike for last three working days of each month.

This agitation can not lead to the establishment of a Bench and each Bar is aware of this.

However the positive aspect is that it is keeping the issue alive. A time has come to rethink the issue and remedial measures are to be undertaken to achieve the goal.

It will be appropriate for me to draw attention to another development. The Bargarh Convention had adopted that the President of District Bar Association, Bargarh shall be the Convenor. However subsequently, the convenorship was conferred to Sri S. B. Mishra of Bargarh Bar to be the convenor. And, as on date Sri Ashok Dash of Sundargarh is the Convener.

Disclosure by Union Law Minister

The letter of the Union Law Minister dt. 31.01.2007 addressed to Sri Prasanna Kumar Acharya the then Member of Parliament discloses that the Government of Orissa intimated in 1991 that they had decided in principle to set up Circuit Benches of the Odisha High Court at Berhampur and Sambalpur or Bolangir but the High Court had not considered it expedient to do so.

The Government of India had advised the Government of Orissa to reemphasise upon the High Court the desirability of establishing its Circuit Bench and to persuade it to do so under Clause 10 of the Orissa High Court Rules, 1948.

The Chief Minister of Orissa addressed a letter dt. 08.11.2007 to the Chief Justice of Orissa High Court which is quoted here under:

“The demand for establishment of permanent! circuit Bench in Western Orissa and Southern Orissa regions have been cropping up for quite sometime and there were also several requests to the Hon’ble High Court on this issue. So far the High Court has taken a view that establishment of either a permanent or a circuit Bench in any of the regions is not expedient.

For the last two years, the demand for establishment of Permanent Bench in Western Orissa and Southern Orissa has gathered momentum and several agitation measures have been taken by the people in Western Orissa and Southern Orissa through Public Meetings, boycotting the Courts etc.

Government have constituted the Western Orissa Development Council for the Western Orissa considering the special problems of large number of people of the area who are mostly tribals.

Similarly Southern Orissa has a large number of tribals and poor people living in remote areas which are far off from the State Capital and Cuttack, the seat of the High Court of Orissa. The main justification advanced by these people is that since the people of these regions are generally poor and the High Court is at a long distance from these areas, they cannot actually avail the opportunity of getting justice.

They are also referring to the recommendations of the Jaswant Singh Commission, which lays emphasis on the characteristic of a region as a criterion for establishment of a permanent Bench of the State High Court.

I would, therefore, request you to consider the above proposal for making available speedy justice to the poor people residing in far flung areas of these two regions at Sambalpur and Berhampur.”

The aforesaid recommendations of the Chief Minister could not persuade the Orissa High Court and did not get approval. Thereafter the Govt. of Orissa has appointed the C. R. Pal Commission. Last year the Union Law Minister Sri V. Moilley had shown positive response for establishment of the Bench in western region of Orissa.

The fact remains that the Orissa High Court and others connected thereto are yet to over come from the syndrome of Raygada Conference and as it seems the Orissa High Court is not thinking to review its earlier decision.

The High Court has exclusive say as regards Circuit Bench of the High Court is concerned. But the High Court can not put huddle for the establishment of a permanent Bench. This can be done by passing appropriate legislation as has been done in case of Ranchi Bench and Madurai Bench.

It will not be out of place to mention here that very frequently Jaswant Singh Commission is referred to. Jaswant Singh Committee is outdated and requires a revisit. Further the said Committee has recommended as under:

“In conclusion, we would like to emphasise that in weighing the claim of a region for a Bench of a High Court it is not necessary that it should satisfy all the norms detailed above. It should be enough if the totality of the conditions and circumstances obtaining in a particular region warrant, the establishment of a Bench.”

Therefore in the given situation the agitation should be aimed at adopting a resolution in the Assembly and forwarding the same to the Central Govt. for passing of appropriate resolution. Even attempt may be made to lay a private member bill in this regard to overcome obstacle.

(Sri Pujari is available at: advocatepujari@gmail.com )

Govt. escapes by paying cash to rape victims; such payment needs uniformity and recovery

Subhas Chandra Pattanayak

Orissa Chief Minister is noted for escaping public wrath by paying cash to the victim of rape or to families of the victims that succumb to effect of rape or die in gang rape. This helps him transform public sympathy for the rape victim to his political advantage, though thereby the State Exchequer gets denuded.

Rape occurs in the climate of crime his deficient administration has created, as under his misrule, capitalism has engulfed the State with all its malicious components of cruelty against the weaker sections.

People are and would remain responsible for continuance of the climate of crime as long as capitalism and its stooges exist; because it is they who should exterminate the tentacles of capitalism and dismiss from power its propounders and perpetrators through ballots, when the time comes. An ancient Oriya axiom rues, “Darire nan lekhaile saru mota baribara adhikar na thae” meaning, a prostitute has no right of choice between sizes of penis. So, whosoever has no objection to political system of exploitation, shall have to live in a state where advantaged fellows shall rape the disadvantaged and the victims of the sense of insecurity will feel, howsoever pervert and sadistic be that, a sense of victory by raping the weaker of either gender. So, the more aggressive has become the spread of capitalism, more menacing has become perpetration of rape in frequency and brutality. Had Naveen Patnaik not been working for capitalism, in these fifteen years of his chiefministry, a climate of concern for fellow beings might have reigned over Orissa. Economy of Rape could not have become such a voracious eater of our exchequer.

But the more baffling is erratic payment of cash compensation in rape cases. There is no uniformity in State-aid to rape victims. All the victims should have free treatment and equal does of compensation and this provision need be legalized immediately. Whims and caprices of handlers of public money must not be allowed to determine who of the victims should get how much cash. And, the cash thus paid, must not be a donation from the State. It must legally be a must for the Government to recover the cash spend by the State towards treatment and compensation from the police of the locality of rape, as it is universally seen that rapists are often protected by the police and rapists escape in nexus with the police. Laws may be amended for the purpose.

Samaja in Maze of Forgery: Two former Ministers of Orissa – Lingaraj Mishra & Radhanath Rath forged the WILL of Gopabandhu; Both benefitted till their death; SoPS continues to Loot

Subhas Chandra Pattanayak

The Oriya daily SAMAJA founded by late Utkalmani Pandit Gopabandhu Das, to which, out of their love and reverence for the great humanitarian leader, the people of Orissa had and have been giving their financial and moral support, is in a menacing maze of forgery and loot.

Sadly, two of Gopabandhu’s trusted men – Lingaraj Mishra and Radhanath Rath – who, because of being known so, had the opportunity of becoming cabinet ministers in Orissa, were the masterminds and/or makers of the forgery from which the paper is yet to be salvaged.

Both of them – Lingaraj and Radhanath – had partnered with each other in forging the last WILL of Gopabandhu to grab the Samaja, which being Gopabandhu’s paper was of superb credibility and the greatest political instrument of the day. They had performed this crime behind the screen of and in nexus with Servants of the People Society (SoPS), of which, while breathing his last, Gopabandhu was the Vice-President.

The 1st victim was Pt. Nilakantha

To ensure that these two persons – Lingaraj and Radhanath – grab the Samaja without any hurdle, Pandit Nilakantha Das, the most revered friend, philosopher and guide of Gopabandhu, who not only was the co-founder of the Samaja, but also had succeeded him as the editor of the paper, had been quite unceremoniously thrown out of its editorship. He has written in his autobiography (Atmajivani) that after Gopabandhu’s sad demise, he kept the paper alive by taking up its editorial responsibilities. But SoPS required him to join it in order to continue as the editor. He refused to be a member of SoPS that led to his eviction from Samaja. When he was being rudely thrown out of Samaja, Gopabandhu Chowdhury, bureaucrat-turned social worker of eminence, was standing silently, he has written. This episode might have opened up the eyes of Chowdhury to the nastiness of SoPS, because he had then refused regular membership of this organization. Nilakantha was too magnanimous a man to bother about what injury was inflicted upon him by these schemers. He was such a simple-natured great man that while reflecting on Lingaraj, he preferred to use choicest words of praise for him.

Nilakantha, matchless man of letters and patriotism, was the most revered man of Orissa after Kula Gourav Madhu Sudan Das and Utkalmani Gopabandhu. If Gopabandhu was the spirit behind the Satyavadi School, Satyavadi Press and the Samaja, he was the main architect.

Nilakantha was so affectionate towards Gopabandhu that he had procured the entire Press of Nilachala Samachar for Gopabandhu’s use and had gifted a house to him to stay along with the Press, which then was christened ‘Satyavadi Press’.

Nilakantha has written that he could not know when Gopabandhu had sold away that house to the Mahant of MR Math. But he has written, he was standing still and speechless when Gopabandhu gifted away the Satyavadi Press to the SoPS.

Obviously he was so blind in his love for Gopabandhu that he did never oppose the selling away of the house he had gifted to Gopabandhu by Gopabandhu to MR Math behind his back and had never opposed gifting away the Satyavadi Press, which he had purchased from Nilachal Samachar, by Gopabandhu to SoPS, even though he was present on the spot. When Nilakantha breathed his last, Samaja had described him as the God in the body of a man.

But, this “God” had been kicked out of the Samaja in presence of Gopabandhu Chowdhury, as otherwise the path for Lingaraj Mishra and Radhanath Rath to become successive editors of the powerful paper could not have been paved.

What must have he done to earn this rough treatment? He must have opposed occupation of the Samaja by SoPS, which is clear from his refusal to become a member thereof to continue as the editor and he must have opposed forgery of Gopabandhu’s WILL to establish ownership of SoPS over the Samaja.

Samaja was not given to SoPS

Two points are noteworthy at this stage. One: Nilakantha, who was present at the time on the spot when Gopabandhu was dictating his “last WILL and testament”, has written that, it was Radhanath Rath that had taken down the dictation and two: Gopabandhu had gifted away only the Satyavadi Press to SoPS, not the Samaja.

In several places in his autobiography, Nilakantha has written about the gifting away of only the Satyavadi Press by Gopabandhu to SoPS; not the Samaja.

Who wrote the WILL:
Radhanath Rath or Lingaraj Mishra?

The WILL in circulation by the Samaja/SoPS is claimed to have been written by Lingaraj Mishra to dictation of Gopabandhu and hence it is not the one dictated by Gopabandhu to Radhanath Rath and also signed by him as per eye-witnessed accounts of Pandit Nilakantha.

Who had then noted down the dictation: Lingaraj Mishra or Radhanath Rath?

There is no reason to disbelieve the eye-witnessed accounts of Pandit Nilakantha Das. So there is reason to apprehend that the WILL dictated to Radhanath Rath by Gopabandhu was certainly not advantageous to the design of Lingaraj and Radhanath. Therefore they suppressed/destroyed the original WILL and manufactured another to replace the original.

Gopabandhu had tremendous trust in them both. But they breached that trust. Otherwise, when Gopabandhu had not given the Samaja to SoPS, they would not have remained silent on change of the text of the WILL depicting the making over of both the Satyavadi Press and the Samaja by Gopabandhu to SoPS. Both of them had become successive editors of the Samaja and none of them ever objected to publication of the paper under ownership of SoPS, if anybody else working in shadow for SoPS than them had tampered with the text of the WILL. Instead of opposing to annexation of Samaja fraudulently by SoPS, both of them grabbed utmost benefit by being at the helm of affairs of the Samaja under the umbrella of SoPS. Their this guilt, in their anxiety to keep the forgery out of public gaze, has given birth to discernibility of a WILL of different texts being in use and circulation by the Samaja/SoPS.

Two texts of the same WILL circulated by Samaja/SoPS

The WILL in use and circulation by the Samaja/SoPS has two different texts. The one published in Samaja on 7.7.1986 as “exact photocopy” of the WILL of Gopabandhu is not the same as the WILL submitted by one S. C. Mantry Rtd. IAS claiming to be its General Manager before the ADM, Cuttack on 2.7.2013 in order to influence his enquiry into the legitimacy of ownership of the Samaja.

The difference

The handwritten WILL published in the Samaja on 7.7.1986 as the “exact photocopy” of the original does not carry the signature of Gopabandhu. Under the text therein, the words ‘Sd/ Gopabandhu Das’ are written sans any date. Towards the end of this “exact photocopy” on the left side of the column 2 (or the page 2), under the caption “witnesses”, three names have been written by the writer of the manuscript that are D.V.R.Patnaik, Basudev Mohapatra, Ramachandra Raut seriatim with a date – 17.6.28 – written underneath.

On the other hand, the copy of the WILL submitted before the Cuttack ADM by the agent of Samaja/SoPS is a typed copy projected as certified true copy of the WILL obtained from Sirastadar, Commissioner of affidavits on 7.9.29. Had it been so, it should have been authenticated on the strength of prescribed payment of fees in shape of ‘Stamps’. No affixation of Stamp is discernible on the body of the typed copy submitted before the Cuttack ADM. Moreover, on the body of this typed copy of the WILL, below the text, Gopabandhu has been shown to have signed on 17.6.28. Then, after writing the words – “written by me to his dictation”, Lingaraj Mishra is shown to have signed on 17.6.28 and then it is written, “Sd. Rama chandra Raut, President, Satyabadi U.Board, 17.6.28, Sd. Basudev Mohapatra, Sriramchandrapur, 17.6.28” and below that, “I testify that the contents of this will were dictated by Pandit Gopabandhu Das, while in his full senses, nd was read over to him and he signed in our presence and we signed in his presence 5 P.M. Sd. D.V.R.Patnaik, L.M.P. 17.6.1928 attending Doctor”.

Hence, it is clear that the “true copy” of the WILL submitted by the agent of the Samaja/SoPS before the Cuttack ADM is different from the “exact photocopy” of the handwritten WILL published by the Samaja on 7.7.1986.

In the “exact photocopy” there is no mention of the WILL read over to Gopabandhu and of his signing the WILL in presence of the witnesses and the witnesses signing in his presence and of the averments of Lingaraj Mishra, “Written by me to his dictation” as well as of the dated signatures of the witnesses in the order that the handwritten WILL carries. So, certainly the typed copy produced as the “certified” true copy of the WILL of Gopabandhu is not the copy of the original WILL.

Dubious role of Radhanath Rath

What was the necessity of publication of the “exact photocopy” of the so-called WILL of Gopabandhu in the Samaja of 7.7.1986 by Radhanath Rath? We shall soon bring its answer to light. But for the present, we can say, it was Radhanath Rath who had obstructed a noted research scholar from bringing out the correct position of the WILL of Gopabandhu. Dr. Nityananda Satpathy, had tried his best to persuade Rath to allow him to go through the original documents and speeches of Gopabandhu for his research on him. Rath rejected all his requests. He has noted in his work on Gopabandhu titled “He Sathi ! He Sarathi !” that disappointed, he had attracted the attention of Gopabandhu’s another closest comrade Acharya Harihar Das to such shocking conduct of Rath. Acharya was very sorry on knowing of this, but seemed helpless. In the circumstances, Satpathi had to rely upon whatever Dr. Sreeram Das had written on Gopabandhu. But, noteworthy is the fact that when Gopabandhu’s so-called WILL has been placed in the book written by Dr. Das on which Dr. Satpathy has relied upon, it has not been kept in the book of Dr. Satpathy. He has kept the page blank instead. I had asked Dr. Satpathy in his residence while obtaining from him a copy of the out of print book as to why has he not placed the text of the WILL. “Having failed to go through the original as Rath did not allow me access to Gopabandhu’s records, I did not deem it prudent to feed my readers with the copy in circulation”, he said.

Though not a part in circulation of the alleged WILL, Dr. Satpathy has also said that Nilakantha had taken down the dictation. This he has said, because his work was admittedly influenced by materials collected from Dr. Das’s work on Gopabandhu. However, this book of Dr. Das published by Gopabandhu Sahitya Mandira, with the help of Radhanath Rath, while including the WILL of Gopabandhu as supplied to him by Radhanath, gives us the accounts of Gopabandhu’s life after giving the dictation of the WILL. It says, “After dictating his WILL, he said, “You must all be careful. My time has come. Let me go”. He directed his friends and colleagues to sit around him and say prayers. Every one started praying and Gopabandhu also joined them. In course of the prayer Gopabandhu said, “Why is my breath moving upwards? I am feeling waist pain because of this”. Acharya Harihar Das began massaging him. The pulse-beat had already stopped and repeated injections did not produce any effect. He had full consciousness and with his hand on his chest he said, “I wish this upward movement of the breath had stopped”. It was stopped after two minutes. Gopabandhu passed away at 7.25 p.m. on the 17th June, 1928”. From this detail description of what happened to Gopabandhu after he dictated his WILL, nowhere it transpires that the WILL as noted down was read over to him and he signed in presence of the witnesses and the witnesses signed in his presence. So, the depiction on the body of the typed copy of the WILL of D.V.R.Patnaik’s averment that “the contents of this WILL were dictated by Pandit Gopabandhu Das, while in his full senses, and was read over to him and he signed in our presence and we signed in his presence” is not correct. Had this “signing” episode occurred, Dr. Dash could have given its narration too. I am afraid, this was added by Dr.Rao Patnaik to give the will the necessary lega; strength.

Our analysis leads us to be convinced that neither the “exact photocopy” of the handwritten WILL published in the Samaja on 7.7.1986 nor the typed copy submitted before the Cuttack ADM by the agent of the Samaja/SoPS on 2.7.13 in course of investigation into ownership of the Samaja is the genuine WILL of Gopabandhu.

We have reason to apprehend that the WILL dictated by Gopabandhu to Radhanath Ratha, as eye-witnessed accounts of Pandit Nilakantha is no more in existence. Both Radhanath and Lingaraj have done away with the same in order to annex the Samaja to SoPS so that both of them – Lingaraj being the lone life member from Orissa after demise of Gopabandhu, and Rath, his associate, could be the beneficiaries of the tremendously popular paper in their political and economic pursuit.

This is a serious offense, well planned and neatly executed by Lingaraj Mishra and Radhanath Rath to grab the Samaja under a guise. Both of them them used the Samaja to their own benefit till their death and SoPS continues to loot it by using the forged WILL.