Last Hope or Lost Hope

Subhas Chandra Pattanayak

In a legislative house monstrous majority of the ruling party generates an environment where compradors use power to build up their empires at the cost of democracy.

With 117 out of 147 seats in Orissa Assembly, the ruling BJD will pursue its agenda of serving the foreign and Indian private sector like the POSCO and Vedanta more vigorously and the poor peasants and proletariat of Orissa, who are so much devoid of purchasing power that rice at Re.1 per kg is provided to them for saving their life from starvation deaths, would suffer imperilment exactly as the fishes that rush into the fisherman’s net perish.

State terror would more menacingly be unleashed to suppress the voices of protest against displacement and oppression. Mother Orissa would more aggressively be denuded of whatever mineral wealth she has yet preserved and of waters her rivers yet save the people with.

Dark days would soon overwhelm Orissa, as ruling politicians having earned the expertise in fetching votes despite having put the people in debacles, will not bother about how the common man would perish under industrialization.

The Executive that has produced even multimillionaire peons in government offices in the BJD regime would be more ruthlessly accommodative to loot of the exchequer, as the massive majority the government in the Assembly would create for the regime’s corrupt collaborators the safest haven.

At such a critical juncture, the last hope or lost hope is Opposition, howsoever small be its size. Members of only three parties – Congress, BJP, and Samatakranti – may constitute the Opposition. Two independents could be known by their actions in future.

So, regardless of who rules the State, the most precious for the people of Orissa shall be Narasingh Mishra, Chiranjibi Biswal, Jogesh Singh, Prafulla Majhi, Tara Prasad Bahinipati, Bhujubal Majhi, Krushna Sagadia, Nabakishore Das, Surya Rao , Amshuman Mohanty, Subala Sahu , Jacob Pradhan, Chandra Sekhar Majhi, Prakash Behera, and Kailash Kulsika of the Congress Party and Dillip Ray, Nitish Gangadev, Basanta Panda, Radharani Panda, Duryodhan Majhi Rabi Nayak, Bibhuti Harichandan, Govind Das and Pradip Purohit of BJP as well as George Tirkey of Samata Kranti and the lone Communist Lakhmana Munda from Bonai.

Let them – specifically the members of Congress and BJP – stay away from mindless loyalty to their central bosses and act in honor of the faith the people of Orissa have put on them in their respective constituencies. Let them not forget that the election was nothing but a veiled contest between American imperialism sponsored by Sonia and Manmohan Singh and Indian capitalism epitomized by Narendra Modi. Orissa has rejected both those parties quite clearly. Hence let them appreciate that they are elected on the basis of their personal acceptability to the people of Orissa belonging to their respective constituencies.

They will make a mistake by taking that in electing them the people have elected their parties.

Hence, let them act as individual and collective sentinels of interest of the people of Orissa as otherwise the State cannot be saved from the clutches of the compradors representing the interests of POSCO and Vedanta and the likes.

Let them remember that they are the last hope or the lost hope for Orissa in the present phase.

No miracle was necessary; Congress helped Naveen win the mandate

Subhas Chandra Pattanayak

Anti-incumbency-undercurrent was so strong that many observers were thinking, only a miracle may help BJD continue in power. But, no miracle was needed. Mr. Naveen Patnaik has got the fresh mandate to rule Orissa in absence of Opposition, though people’s support to him seems very positive. He has shown a perfect sample of how serious should politicians be in electioneering, even as under the secret agenda of the Congress high command he was to win.

Orissa, the birthplace of Jagannatha Buddha, and hence of universal brotherhood, is by orientation a secular land in the true sense of secularism and it has proved this uniqueness by ignoring the media generated Modi wave that has overwhelmed whole of India.

The State, where, despite the highest Hindu density, Jagannatha Cult guides the masses, was not supposed to be and has not become a den of BJP.

In view of this, and in absence of the Left, the Congress party should have given the real challenge to Naveen; but Congress versus Congress in Orissa has ensured his victory.

As a result, the State is the loser. To cite just an example, the new House will miss Prasad Harichandan whose researched inputs and legislative acumen had made tremendous contributions to the outgoing Assembly.

Tricks of administration trying to legitimatize the wrongs against the people may find no notable obstacle in an environment of totalitarianism that mandate 2014 has created in absence of a challenging Opposition.

Though people of Balangir deserve unreserved praise for having elected Sri Narasingh Mishra, who would probably lead the CLP in the benches of Opposition, one wishes if Prasad Harichandan of Congress, Bijay Mohapatra of BJP, and Soumya Ranjan Patnaik of Ama Odisha could have come to the House, perhaps the rampart of democracy in Orissa could have been better guided not to take any decision per incuriam which compradors in power generally do when their party enjoys massive majority in the House.

Such a situation would never have emerged had the high-command of Congress not sabotaged the Orissa unit by replacing Niranjan Patnaik with Jayadev Jena when Patnaik had almost revived the dilapidated party in the State and the approaching steps of election were already audible.