Drum-beating of imagined dreams stupefies Orissa, as the Country has failed to punish Biju Patnaik for his treason during Chinese Aggression

Subhas Chandra Pattanayak

There is a Government in Orissa that is in power for twelve years as the people are stupefied under deafening drum-beating of imagined dreams of the incumbent Chief Minister’s father, late Biju Patnaik.

The opponents of the Chief Minister in the ruling party have formed a front of their own called Jan Morcha. And, this Morcha also beats the drum of dreams of Biju Patnaik!

If anything, this is an act of vested interest political acrobats to keep the people stupefied, so that vote catching can be easier for them.

I have tried to locate if Biju had really any dreams for the people of Orissa. I have found none. I have not found any dream that Biju Patnaik had for the people of Orissa. The man, who did not make his son learn even a single alphabet in Oriya language, cannot be taken as a man, who had dreams for Orissa. If he had any dream, that was only for occupying power to misuse power for his personal benefit. But yet, drum-beating of Biju dreams has been stupefying the political conscience in Orissa. Goebbels prevails when people are too gullible to go for the truth.

The truth is that Biju was a profit fetcher from politics. He had entered into politics to drag in funds and profits for his industries and eventually had left the industrial life as politics appeared to him to be the easiest way to fetch fabulous wealth without any botheration for cultivating and repaying loans, organizing markets and paying salaries.

So, politics for Biju was a profession for personal profit. And, in pursuit of profit, he was always trying to fetch and stay in power. His sycophants are trying to hide this reality under torrents of cooked up Biju dreams.

We have heard the deafening drumbeats of Biju dreams by both the quarreling fractions of the ruling party named after him on October 19, as the Chief Minister’s mega meeting at Berhampur militated against the dissidents’ press meet at Bhubaneswar on the same day. Therefore it would be proper to recall a particular episode of Biju’s life that had occurred 50 years ago when October 19 had metamorphosed into October 20, 1962, to get a glimpse of his dreams in pursuit of which he was using political power.

On that day, China had attacked India. And in that war, India had to suffer the most ignominious defeat after independence, because persons like Biju Patnaik had their dreams to fulfill.

Brig. John Delvi in his book ‘Himalayan Blunder’ has pointed out that India lost more than 11000 square kilometers of her land to China in the 1962 war because of lack of basic essentials like warm clothing, snow boots, and glasses.

Why the Indian Army had not got these essential supplies? This is because; Biju Patnaik had played the treachery.

He had fetched a contract to airdrop essential supplies to our soldiers in the NEFA front. But, instead of delivering the essentials to our soldiers, he had sold away the same in black-markets (Lok Sabha Debates (V) (1967) 7980-7990). Because of this treason, our soldiers had lost their stamina to fight and we were in the worst of debacles after our independence.

This particular debate was generated in the environment of availability of Lt. General B. M. Kaul’s accounts on our war debacle in his book ‘The Untold Story’, published on January 01, 1967.

In this book, he had attributed the defeat partly to inadequate supply of essential necessities too.

Biju Patnaik had obtained the contract for supply of essential necessities through his Kalinga Airways in the border to our forces engaged in defense of our land. But, instead of delivering the supply to the soldiers, he had sold them in the black-market at Calcutta, at Dibrugarh, at Jorhat and other places. In the Lok Sabha debate mentioned above, when Hem Barua had rued over this, S. M. Banerjee had pointed out that when in the snow-clad battlefield on the border our soldiers were in dire need of basic essentials like warm clothing, and some of the countries like West Germany had rushed profuse amount of top quality woolens like blankets, pullovers, shocks and snow-shoes etc for use of our fighting forces, that never reached them, as the rich people grabbed them for their own comfort through the black-market fed by Kalinga Airwayss of Biju Patnaik.

Despite having sold the essential defense supplies in the black-market, Biju Patnaik had bagged Rs. 1, 78, 33, 416.00 from the exchequer towards charges of their delivery in the border (Prime Minister Nehru’s reply to Surendranath Dwivedi in the Lok Sabha on 25 January 1963)

General Kaul had tried to hush up Biju’s offenses by attempts to divert public attention from Biju to Krishna Menon for India’s debacle. He has tried to convince us that Kalinga Airways could not carry out the supply, because Krishna Menon refused to grant Biju the necessary financial assistance for procuring more aircraft to use in transportation of essentials for the soldiers. He has written,

“Bijoo Patnaik, whom I had known for many years, and who had not yet become the Chief Minister, Orissa, came to see me in my office one day. …….. He told me, a fact which I knew, that owing to the limited resources of the Air Force, the External Affairs Ministry were maintaining the far-flung Assam Rifles military posts by air-drops in NEFA through the Kalinga Airways which was one of his concerns. Due to shortage of planes – which was, in turn, due to shortage of foreign exchange – the Kalinga Airways were unable to carry out this commitment fully. He, therefore, asked me if I could persuade my Defense Minister, Krishna Menon, to help in this matter by getting him the necessary foreign exchange for purchase of the additional aircraft. ………. I approached the Defense Minister ……… Krishna Menon told me that on no account was he prepared to help Kalinga Airways as it would indirectly mean that the Air Force, one of the Services under him, was incapable of carrying out this commitment. ……… No amount of argument on my part, however, was of any avail. The result was that the Assam Rifles posts remained inadequately supplied and in fact we were prevented at times from establishing more such posts, due to logistical reasons, which was operationally necessary”.

From Kaul’s accounts it is clear that the Assam Rifles military posts were being maintained by air-drops in NEFA through Biju Patnaik, much before China attacked us. And, more significantly, the Defense Minister, who was averse to his department’s contract with Biju Patnaik for the air-drops of essentials in the NEFA border, was not able to undo the contract. Obviously Biju’s patron was more powerful than the Defense Minister in deciding whether or not Biju was to continue with the contract. This most powerful man was Prime Minister Nehru. Because of Nehru, Krishna Menon was not able to discard Biju Patnaik.

Why did Menon reject Kaul’s pleadings for for Biju? It is because, he was aware of Biju’s profit motive and the illegalities Kalinga airways was involved with under his avarice. He was not willing to equip Biju with further opportunity to expand his business of treachery.

Biju had committed many offenses against the country even before the Chinese attack. One of these offenses was unauthorized use of an aircraft of his company- known to defense intelligence as a plane under contract with their department – on 26 October 1959 in secret service of a group of unidentified persons that had traveled to and fro between Calcutta and Bombay.

Questionable conduct of Biju’s airways, specifically as the defense of the country was involved, was inquired into through a committee headed by Katju. The findings of this Committee were devastating.

Had its report been placed before the Parliament in its entirety, Prime Minister Nehru’s short-sighted patronization to Biju and the felonies perpetrated through Kalinga Airways could have come to public knowledge. Therefore, Nehru’s government claimed privilege over the report and denied even the MPs to go through it, though on December 01, 1960, the Lok Sabha was fed with a vetted synopsis thereof after a lot of ruckus.

Biju was so much under the Prime Minister’s protection that the government had come out with a written statement that even though the Katju Committee had found massive irregularities committed by Kalinga airways, the government was not to terminate the contract with him.

However, the government would keep watchful eyes on Kalinga Airways so that no further irregularities it can commit, the minister had promised to the House.

But despite the promise given to the Parliament, the government failed to keep eyes on Biju, as a result of which, the defense supplies did not reach the soldiers in the battle field, but fetched profit for Biju from the black-market in places like Calcutta, Dibrugarh and Jorhat.

Minister of State (Home)Vidya Charan Shukla, as he then was, had told Atal Behari Vajpayee in reply to his star question bearing No. 785 on 28 June 1962, that the Public Accounts Committee had found many specific illegalities and forgeries,which the Kalinga Airways of Biju Patnaik had committed. He had informed that on the basis of the report, a committee of inquiry had been appointed to go into the details of the offenses and to recommend specific action to be taken. But no action was taken against him.

When the war was going on, Kalinga Airways had at least 1600 unauthorized flights on the war front. This was a serious offense. The PAC had located this offense. Who had funded these 1600 unauthorized flights over the border where the war was going on, and in the most sensitive time, has not been determined. But, surprisingly, after conclusion of the PAC report, the number of the suspicious and unauthorized flights was tampered with and in place of 1600, the figure was projected as 200. As Mr. G. G. Swell queried on who tampered with the figure of the unauthorized flights, Minister Shukla had declared, that the committee investigating into the specific offenses of Kalinga Airways, would also look into this mischief.

But, Biju never got the punishment he deserved for these offenses and treachery against the country when India was engaged in the war. Evidently though we lost 12000 square kilometers in the war, as our soldiers did not get the life-saving essentials, as Biju’s airways fed the black-markets with the same instead of air-dropping them in our military posts, the country has not yet punished him for the treason he committed. He escaped, because any action against him could also have brought to limelight the wrongful patronization Nehru had given to Biju oblivious of harms that was causing to the country.

The whereabouts of Kalinga Airways was not kept track of. The loss the nation suffered was not determined. The pilots of the airways without whose collaboration Biju could not have committed the illegalities were never interrogated. But reports were in print media that some of the aircraft had faced accidents that extinguished also the pilots whom the nation should have once interrogated to know the truth.

The drum-beaters of Biju-dreams are befooling the people by taking advantage of the country’s failure to punish him for his treason during the Chinese aggression. The Opposition Congress is not in a position to expose Biju’s treacheries; because thereby the bungling that Nehru had made, would also be exposed.

In such circumstances, use your conscience.

BJD members should take the opportunity offered by Pyari

Subhas Chandra Pattanayak

People of Orissa are known for such disposition that it is impossible to imagine that the Congress party, the de facto owner of which is Sonia Gandhi, will get the mandate to rule, if Manmohan Singh should be continuing as Prime Minister till the election.

The people of Orissa, with their outlook inherently secular, will never vote the Communal BJP to power.

The Communists and progressive politicians are yet to unite to become fit for taking over the reign.

So, it is BJD which alone has the possibility of fetching a fresh mandate.

Yet, the mega meet it cooked at Berhampur on October 19 was to everybody’s knowledge a panic meet. Self-defense was sic passim in the speech of its ‘supremo’ Naveen Patnaik and the orations of all who spoke. The entire meet, from start to finish, was aimed at tackling the disillusionment now so discernible in the BJD rank and file. All out attempts were made to convince them that there is no threat to the party. But every worker and supporter of BJD who attended the meet was convinced that the party is in severe trouble. The reality is so very formidable that the preening prince of Bijudom, under whose autocratic control the party has drifted away from democratic norms, had to loudly hallucinate that he may or may not remain in power, but he shall have no reason to feel despaired. The sycophants of Naveen were such panic-struck that they forgot all political etiquettes and described their dissident colleagues as dogs that have betrayed the master!

All the BJD workers and supporters that had congregated there were not idiots. They understood that fear of fall has engulfed the BJD top brass.

So, BJD is in real trouble. If this condition continues, it would not be possible for BJD to bag a fresh mandate; though, till the Communists and progressive forces offer an alternative, this party is more desirable than the rest of the right-wingers.

BJD rank and file ought to understand the importance of the historical role they are to play to save Orissa from the American agents and the communalists. Therefore they ought to understand why Naveen is shuddering under fear of fall to the extent of hallucinating: “I may or may not stay in power………….”

Why should BJD get rid of Naveen

Naveen has ruined Orissa. Under his rule, the land-grabbers and mine-looters have used Orissa as their grazing ground. He has used his chief-ministerial prerogative to put the mines portfolio in the hands of first-time-ministers who, over-obliged to him by having a place in the cabinet, psychologically stay ready to carry out whatever instruction he should be giving in matters of mines allocation. Orissa has possibly suffered a loss of four lakh crores of rupees due to loot of mines; because of deliberate bestowment of the mines department to inexperienced first-timers in the cabinet (Odisha’s Proxy Mining Ministers: Sirish C.Mohanty, The Industry and Mines Observer, August 16-31, 2012, p.17). His government has collaborated with illegal mining to the drastic destruction of our eco-systems. Even the Similipal Biosphere Reserve has suffered horrific threat to its existence because of mining. He has given every reason to suspect that he has been acting a comprador, even as indigenous people are left in the lurch to perish, as Naveen has stood with the pernicious private industries. The entire State is drowned under corruption. People are distressed as disillusioned are the genuine workers of BJD.

This reality has given birth to Jan Morcha. It is remarkable that Pyari Mohan Mohapatra, the real architect of BJD victory in 2009 election, in founding this Morcha, has no ill motive against BJD. He and his intimate colleagues in the Morcha have made it clear in their Press Meet on October 19, that, they want internal democracy to return to the party and the party be made people-centric instead of being industry-centric. The Morcha is not to act against the BJD, but wants to cleanse the party of the black sheep and corrupt, commission agents and to extricate it from the autocratic clutches.

If this happens, the people will not reject the BJD.

Thus it can be said sans hesitation that Pyari and his team in Jana Morcha have offered the last opportunity to BJD members to save their party from being rejected by the people. The rank and file of BJD should avail this opportunity and educate each other in using collective wisdom to manage the party in a democratic way.

And, the party can be managed in a democratic way only when the members would get rid of the ugliest anathema to democracy that they call ‘the supremo’.

Origin and Development of Bhasmasura that Pyari Poses Shiv to Extirpate

Subhas Chandra Pattanayak

Orissa’s ruling party BJD is in total disarray with depiction of Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik as the Bhasmasura (the demon that tries to destroy the master by using the tricks learnt from him) by its super brain Pyarimohan Mohapatra, who is posing Shiv for his extirpation.

Power sans proven merit

Naveen is the first man to have occupied the Chief Minister’s chair in Orissa sans any proven merit and hence, the State is in deep despair during his regime.
His father Biju Patnaik, an astute political acrobat of his time with lots of sycophants – common to influential mafias everywhere – died in a condition of rejection by the people of Orissa who had thrown him into the political dustbin after suffering a menacing misrule. J. B. Patnaik, then the State’s CM, out of political courtesy, organized a tremendous obituary for him and the magnanimous people of the State forgave him for all the damages he had done to them. And, as the people of Orissa are very simple by nature, a surge of sympathy for his bereaved family was soon seen.

Peculiar nature of the people

Let us take a short break to see how uniquely simple are the people of Orissa. I will take you to my childhood days in my native place Tigiria. Throughout the year, my father was offering a Purana Patha (recitation of epics) on the outer Veranda of our house where people of my locality, after refreshment in the evening, were gathering to hear the epics that a hired Brahmin used to recite. Ramayana and Mahabharata in Oriya were the epics that were being recited in succession. There was no electricity. The oil lamp was the only medium of light. So, beyond where the Panda was reciting the epic, there was darkness in its soothing best that the people were enjoying at the end of the active day. In that darkness the characters of the epic were, as if, reaching the rapt listeners through the rhythms of recitation, as the Brahmin , whose proficiency in adding emotions to his voice was keeping the entire environment tuned to the topic. People were coming to cheers when a hero was trouncing a villain. But they were soon in tears when the family members of the villain were crying over his death. As for example, people were cheering when Rama was making mincemeat of Ravana; but the next moment, when Mandodari was crying over the death of her husband, the cries of the same people over the demise of Ravana was gushing out in sympathy for the bereaved Mandodari. So simple were our people in my childhood days. This nature has not yet disappered despite changes.

Post-independence politico-economic complications notwithstanding, our people are, by nature, magnanimous and simple. Therefore, when Biju Patnaik died, despite the truth that, in wrath against his corruption and misrule, they had rejected him in the elections, they pardoned his offenses and joined the state obituary offered to him.

Simplicity exploited

The shrewd members of the gang of his sycophants, none of who could ever have dared to dream of occupying power in Orissa on the basis of his own strength and merit, tried to transform this obituary into a sympathy wave for his bereaved family and picking up his son Naveen as the mask, they started a political party by Biju’s name that is known as BJD. And, in the election that followed, this sympathy wave metamorphosed into ballots for Biju’s son and sycophants, who now thrive on a deliberately coined concept of Biju legacy.

So, Naveen became CM neither because of any sacrifice he has for the state, nor because of any political merit he possesses; but because of being an object of mass sympathy after becoming Baapa Cheunda (a child bereft of father).

To his good fortune, a very shrewd and intelligent former bureaucrat Pyari Mohan Mohapatra (Pyari) was available to him to give him the guidance, which he could never have got from any of the sycophants of his father, none of them having any marked political prudence, but each of them being busy in exploiting the moment to his/her personal benefit. People of Orissa became victims of their own magnanimity and simplicity.

But soon it was clear that the preening prince of Bijudom was not able to give a good administration.

Re-emergence of JB

The Congress Party had realized the mistake it had committed by replacing J. B. Patnaik with Gamango just before the elections. It tried to amend its mistake by appointing JB as the PCC Chief.

And, Naveen was no match for JB.

The scenario changed and ministers started revolting against Naveen.

JB gave a call that Naveen should quit, as he was unable to give governance. The State plunged into a state of utter confusion.

JB, as known to Pyari

While serving under JB for so many years, Pyari, the former IAS officer, had deeply understood his then political master’s peculiarities. He had understood that, JB is a man who dislikes discarding even his detractors from his circle, if once he has granted them the boon of his umbrage. He honors his foes for the good qualities, if any, discernible in them and protects the persons, howsoever bad, once they take refuge in him.

This is why he had not taken any action against super offenders like Indrajit Ray. Even sharp saboteurs like Basant Biswal and Bhagavat Mohanty were not dismissed by him despite circumstantial evidences galore to convince that they had tremendous role in Ajana Mishra gang rape episode, masterminded to expedite his removal from office.

Pyari had understood this peculiarity of JB.

The panacea Pyari prescribed

When the astute JB was humiliating Naveen and BJD leaders were at a loss to understand how to make the government functional, Pyari came to his rescue. He gave him a panacea. He advised Naveen to do what JB had never done, so as to give the people a matrix for juxtaposition of the two Patnaiks, which he was sure, would be of utmost advantage for the former.

He advised Naveen to dismiss a pack of his ministers soiling them with innuendoes of corruption even though they were the founder members of his party.

This trick created an occasion of comparison between JB and Naveen in the public and gave an image to Naveen as a crusader against corruption as against JB’s cohabitation with corrupt fellows in his regime.

This was the key to his survival in CM post at that critical juncture. And, thus the former secretary to his father had emerged as ‘uncle’ to Naveen.

Since then Naveen has dismissed many ministers, as and when necessary, to save his own skin and knowing of his wont to dismiss any minister at any time, his cabinet colleagues have remained so docile that there is no real use of collective wisdom in managing the matters of the State. And, therefore, the POSCOs and the Vedantas and the Tatas and the Ravishankars and the likes have used the administration to transform Orissa to their grazing ground. People of Orissa have perished.

Abhorrence in the rise

Therefore, admiration for him is changing into abhorrence in the heart of his own followers in BJD. Biju sycophants are not leaving the party; but are opposing him in the party. This is so sharp that a person like Jagneswar Babu, regarded more as a gentlemen than a politician, has been suspended on disciplinary ground. In every district, BJD is distinctly divided into two fractions – pro-administration and pro-organization. In every nook and corner of Orissa, Congress is getting flow of support from disillusioned members of the BJD in its Parivartan Padayatra which the latter is trying to counter through Jana Sampark Yatra. The Jana Samparka Yatra itself is indicative of how abhorrence to Naveen is in the rise.

Ministers Morcha Vrs Jana Morcha

How far the Padayatra campaign of the Congress party can bring in Parivartan (the change in power) is, curiously, not the crux of public interest in Orissa. The anti-people policies shamelessly pursued by the Congress party and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh under American influence are being intently watched by the people and the Congress leadership knows that the people are waiting to give the American agents the lesion they deserve, when they are to give their verdict in elections. Individuals like Prasad Harichandan, marked for personal honesty, integrity and efficiency may win; but that won’t be a Congress win.

So, what forms the crux of public interest in Orissa is the internecine tussle that has engulfed BJD.

In every unit of BJD, members recruited by Pyari are active in organization and they are active also against their colleagues who rally round the ministers for personal benefits while neglecting the organization. The ministers boast of power and bask under self-glorification in the company of sycophants and habitual order-carriers of whosoever holds power. Genuine party workers with a bit of self-respect are blatantly ignored in every party unit. On the other hand, Pyari had inspired party workers with recognition of their political worth after deliberately extinguishing the BJD alliance with BJP by unilaterally declaring to set party candidates in every constituency. Had he not done that, Naveen would never have got MLAs to continue as CM for the third term. When innumerable people of Orissa are getting displaced because of Naveen’s nexus with the Tatas and the Ambanis and the POSCOs and the likes, when eco-systems are getting destroyed because of the same nexus, when development funds are getting looted, when welfare projects are getting derailed, when crop fields are inundated with toxic industrial ashes, when slow starvation continues, when distress sale of paddy, distress sale of body, distress sale of baby child are regular phenomena, when officers are ruling the roost, it was not unnatural for genuine BJD members to explore if Pyari could intervene and bring out a change in the stance of administration. But this has landed the party in such a jam that Pyari himself is suspended sans any scope for self-defense. Rightly for him, he has described Naveen as a Bhasmasura.

BJD is becoming murkier as the ministers and their yes-men (Ministers Morcha) want to nip in the bud the Orissa Jan Morcha that Pyari has given birth to.

The scenario may usher in an alternative

Orissa is discernibly disturbed. The scenario is shocking.

But it may usher in an alternative.

The Main Opposition – Congress – is trying to revive itself. But with compradors comprising its high command, patriotic people of Orissa will not vote for it.

Agrarians by birth, with social outlook refined by ideology of Jagannatha-Buddha, the Oriyas are a people who are proud of their ancient culture of universal brotherhood; and therefore, can never support aggressive communalism. Hence BJP has no chance of having the people’s mandate.

Left is the best alternative the people dream about. But, when CPM feels no qualms in publicly projecting Mulayam Singh Yadav as the communists’ prime-ministerial candidate, people are too shocked to rely upon them.

During the last two months, one has witnessed various think-tank-seminars in Orissa that search for possible alliance between genuine left and democratic progressive forces, so that a viable alternative could be placed before the voters. But political opportunism promoted by the plutocrats is so very rampant that such an alternative looks very remote.

With no other alternative readily available, Pyari’s Jan Morcha may fill up the vacuum.

Strategically they may use Biju’s name to withstand what the Ministers Morcha would be doing for Naveen.

But, the genuine left and democratic, progressive forces may find in it a ready ally to save the State from anarchy.

Thus, come, October 28, with Orissa Jan Morcha defining its real shape, an alternative may emerge if the genuine left finds in it a progressive ally.


Subhas Chandra Pattanayak
(Pictorial input from Atulya Mohanty through Prasanta Patnaik)

ORISSA MATTERS strongly condemns the brutal attack on media magnet Soumya Ranjan Patnaik by the Orissa Police that hounded him into the residence of Rabinarayan Pani, a ruling party MLA, before inflicting on him injuries, simply because he belongs also to the Congress party, that had a tremendous congregation before the Assembly on September 6 in protest against continuous misrule by the BJD.

For a corrupt and anti-people Government, the last hope for survival lies in terrorizing its opponents. The bloody attack on the Congress congregation by use of the Police, therefore, is not surprising.

Having usurped power under circumstances not yet clearly comprehended by many, but clearly when minemongers even of foreign countries were zeroing on Orissa, the nature’s monumental depository of mineral wealth, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik has given a government that has earned a non-dismissible disrepute as a government more eager to oblige mines-eyeing industries than the land-loosing indigenous people.

The administration’s dubious conduct in squandering away mines apart, people have reasons to be aggrieved in every sphere, as corruption has become so all-pervasive that shrewd fellows in the lowest rank in government offices like night-watchmen and peons have become multimillionaires. How much the top functionaries have benefited is not easy to fathom out. In the language of the Opposition, it is a loot raj.

Against this loot of the State, the Congress party had given a call for protest in front of the Assembly. More than a lakh of people congregated in the earmarked area on the Mahatma Gandhi road on September 6. Government did not tolerate.

The pictures would present what happened.

Blood oozes out as corrupt administration promulgates brutality.

They had no qualms in attacking the rally participants before TV cameras.

Brutality knew no limits. So many police personnel pried upon a single person.

The rightful congregation of Congress party was held with permission from the appropriate authority.

Yet the police terrorized the participants to flee.

The attackers.

State terror knows no barrier.

Office of the Opposition vandalized.

Another blood-drenched victim of the suckers of the State.

Tolerance reached the last limit.

The people retort.

Wrath knows no fear.

When the people retorted, a good many number of police personnel suffered injuries.

The congregation was politically surcharged, yet peaceful. Had the police not been rash and rather could have been vigilant enough to control the agent provocateurs, the road named after Mahatma Gandhi would not have witnessed the avoidable violence.

Tempest in the Land of Scams: Ruling Party in Peril; No Alternative Visible

Subhas Chandra Pattanayak

There is a tempest in the Scamsterdom.

Orissa, the land of peace-loving people, turned into a land of scams by the compradors in power, is seeing its ruling party rushing into peril. Yet there is no political alternative visible.

The BJD is breaking.

Its president Naveen Patnaik, has suspended Pyari  Mohan Mohapatra, the real architect of the party’s 2009 electoral victory, due to jitteriness over news that he was trying to snatch away from him his twelve years old position as head of the State’s political government. The action is authored to dismiss him.

A year ago, on 23 May 2011, I had foreseen this. My caption was, “If Pyari Mohapatra is not dismissed, he will replace Naveen Patnaik as CM“. My analysis has come out correct. What I had expected to happen, has happened.

To stay safe in power, Naveen has played such stunts many times earlier. Whenever he has apprehended threat to his position from any member of the party, he has dismissed him/her from the cabinet or party post, even from the party, hurling unestablished charges and on flimsy grounds. To save his own skin, when a scam is exposed, he has also found scapegoats in any of his colleagues.

This time, along with Mohapatra, he  has suspended two MLAs and dismissed three ministers from his cabinet because of suspicion that they were one with Pyari in the internecine rebellion.

But like the ministers or members dropped from the cabinet and/or dismissed from the party on earlier occasions, these persons are not the victims of Supremo-syndrome. These are the people, who, in the pack of sycophants constituting BJD, are of leadership quality reflected in their wisdom to  revolt against the scams that have ruined Orissa.

Along with time, the rebels in BJD are bound to rise in numbers. Orissa is devastated by so many scams in the regime of Naveen Patnaik, that, people are looking at everybody known as his loyal colleagues with suspicion as a possible  scamster for which,  many in BJD, who are not involved in the scams, are feeling very awkward, embarrassed and  suffocated.

They are in BJD, simply because there is no alternative available to them.

But they also know that the BJD brand will not help them in the next election.

Therefore they will try to explore if any alternative to Naveen could be discovered or built up.

Pyari Mohapatra has taken the first welcome step in this regard.

Many of BJD members will join him in course of time as people will wake up to save their State, which is bound to happen, and it would be increasingly clear that siding with scamsters will lead to their rejection in election.

By demanding CBI investigation into mining scams, Mohapatra has made it clear that saving Orissa from the scamsters will be his principal approach to election.

Mohapatra’s distinction

In fact, Mohapatra was the brain behind electoral victory of BJD in the last election. He shattered Naveen’s two-term old coalition with BJP by choosing its strongman K..V.Singhdeo’s political nerve centre Bolangir as the launching pad of his unilateral battle against BJP. He surprised everybody including his party by pronouncing his declaration to plant BJD candidates in all the constituencies in Orissa. Heavyweights in BJD, such as Dr. Damodar Raut did not hesitate to criticize Mohapatra’s assertion; but there was none to stop his steps.

Mahapatra’s steps not only broke the coalition with the rightist BJP, but also paved the way for electoral understanding with the left, thereby giving the party of compradors a cover of progressive color, which helped it face the electorate in a renewed spirit. Had it not happened, Dr. Raut who is leading the present attack on Pyari, might himself not have returned to the Assembly, the left being of immense influence in his area.

Mohapatra’s declaration that, in all the constituencies under occupation of BJP, there shall be his party candidates, also instantly ignited hope and aspiration in  the low lying constituency level leaders of BJD for berths in the legislature, resultantly waking them up to ensure victory for the party, while leaving the unprepared former ally entirely perplexed.

This is why BJD had won.

BJD had won not because of popularity of Naveen, but because of assertive acumen of Pyari, which augmented the feeling of freedom to contest that the BJD workers in BJP constituencies were not having till then, because of the coalition.

Had Mohapatra not done this with determination and in time, the results of the election would have been different and Naveen could not have become the Chief Minister again.

The position was such, that,  had he wanted, after the election, except at best a dozen of coastal area MLAs and a single MLA from Ganjam, all other MLAs of BJD could have stood behind him and instead of Naveen, he could have become the CM.

Yet, like Chanakya (Pyari was being aptly called Chanakya of BJD so far) he preferred to remain a king maker and therefore, it became possible for Naveen to become the CM , for the first time, on the strength of a single party, not of a coalition.

Naveen’s Predicament

But, curiously,  when in the preceding two terms of heading a coalition with BJP, he had not faced any rebellion, either in the segment of allies or in his own party, Naveen is facing it now while heading his own party government and  to such of his wit’s end, that he is not able to distinguish between personal loyalty and political prudence.

The situation shall not improve for him. He is in such a situation that he cannot escape the land-grabbers. He cannot extricate himself from the traps of POSCO, Vedant, Tata and the likes. None of these industries have come to Orissa on invitation of its government to execute projects planned and required by the State. They were in search of lands and mines; and have stumbled upon Orissa, where, to their advantage, compradors are in power. They have gained over the compradors in such manners that the State is waging wars on its own people at their behest. They are in a position to blackmail Naveen if at any point of time within his incumbency he dares to stop serving their interest. Thus it is not possible for Naveen to refuse to dance to the tune of the corporates.

In such a situation,  whosoever in BJD is not involved with the scams and has respect for prudence in public life and loyalty for the motherland, will rise in revolt against him and join Pyari.

Plenty of sycophants
sans leadership quality

In the last more than a decade, precisely since BJD was formed, none but Pyari has proved to be a person of leadership quality. In the party of sycophants, he alone was the man from whom, the people know, the Chief Minister was taking instructions.

Now as he has been jettisoned, Patnaik will stay surrounded by the sycophants and, by the vested interests. Plenty of sycophants sans political acumen would be of no use to Naveen. This will further push Orissa into labyrinths of scams that people would  no more tolerate. BJD ‘s peril will further deepen and deepen beyond management.

Orissa in turmoil

But it shall not end Orissa’s turmoil.

A political alternative to Naveen would be needed to save her from the scamsters, from the compradors.

Pyari, in the present environment, cannot give that alternative.

Because, being the de facto Chief Minister all these years, he cannot convince the people that he was not a party to the crimes committed by the de jure CM against the people.

To be able to offer the alternative, he is to come out with details against Naveen, because he knows where, when and how the CM has played his part in the scams.

He has started demanding for a CBI investigation into mining scam. Mining is not the only scam that has hit Orissa. The State is scam-stroke. And, Pyari knows it.

So, if he is sincere to the new role he aspires to play, he must reveal all that he knows of all the scams and all the details of Naveen’ collaboration therewith.

Instead of stressing on CBI inquiry, he should divulge details to the general public and thereby help the general public treat the traitors with appropriate action.

Biju experience

Let us not forget that Biju Patnaik, father of Naveen, on capturing the Chief Minister post for the first time, by prevailing upon Jawaharlal Nehru to quash Harekrushna  Mahtab’s coalition with Bolangir’s former king R.N.Singhdeo, had generated so many scams that there was a mass uprising against him led by the students and youth of Orissa, consequent upon which he was forced out of office, though the Congress leadership in the center had given his dismissal a veil styled Kamraj Plan.

The Central Government had tried to hoodwink the people with a Cabinet Sub-Committee investigation, which, in fact, was a covering up exercise to help the bigwig of their party; but because of unrelenting protests against such protection to Biju, it had been forced to institute a probe by the CBI into allegations of scams against him.

The CBI tried its best to protect him also; but could not entirely ignore the massiveness of the scams he had masterminded and executed. It recommended for further investigation by a more powerful body alleging that the Orissa government (run by the party of Biju) did not properly cooperate with the sleuths conducting the probe.

The central government, instead of acting against Biju, slept over the CBI report.

What happened?

People punished Biju in the following general election, by bringing in the revived combine of Mahtab and Singhdeo (the coalition of Swatantra party and Jan Congress).

Biju tried to to return to power by forming a new regional party. But the people refused him mandate in the next election too.  

So, instead of demanding a CBI inquiry, Mohapatra, if he is sincere in what he says, should place details of Naveen’s role in the mining and all other scams before the general public, so that the people can take their own decision.

Unless he does it, he cannot be the expected alternative, though, because of him, the ruling party of Orissa is certainly in peril.

Congress cannot be the alternative

India of the majority Indians is perishing because of the Congress; because of Manmohan Singh’s pernicious economic policies.

The cause of India is sabotaged to provide a bonanza to nuclear traders of USA. Fraud has been played upon Indian Constitution to serve the interests of avaricious industries and corporates.

The crimes that the Congress has committed against the country ever since Manmohans and Miukherjees and Montakes and Sonia’s and sycophants have emerged as planners and leaders are so monstrous that it would be a folly to accept the Congress as the alternative to Naveen in Orissa.

This is such a party that its central leadership has helped Naveen to defeat Congress in Orissa and to continue in power. To retrieve our democracy from the grip of plutocracy that its leadership has shaped, it should be the country’s top priority to get rid of the Congress and hence it would be wrong for Orissa to accept the Congress as an alternative to the BJD.

Despite cleaner members, BJP is neither

On the other hand,  when in power, BJP was a party having a national president in a man like Banguru Laxman, now convicted with four years of rigorous imprisonment for having received money to facilitate a deal though thereby the country’s defense was to have been endangered.

Its government was a government also of George Fernandiz whose official residence was being used as a bribe hub in defense deals.

No government till then had a disinvestment ministry addressed to divest India of her industrial assets at the behest of private operators.

For the first time in India, a new pattern of culture was created and created by the BJP led government. It was the culture of corruption.

Atal Bihari Vajpayee’s blue eyed boy Pramod Mahajan, son of a low grade low-paid school teacher, had been able to amass an unestablished assets worth Rs.2000 Crores within a short span of time in the BJP regime.

This culture was so much in practice by BJP bigwigs that eight of its MPs were caught taking money for  putting questions in Parliament, from from fellows who had ulterior interests in those questions. The Parliament had to dismiss them from membership to save its own dignity.  

This party is also a party of real life compromise with the Congress. It had never condemned Jaswant Sinha for the farce he made of the Parliament in matter of BCCI, the bank of terror funding. There are many such instances where BJP’s expertise in sabotaging the cause of Indian democracy is so huge that depiction thereof is beyond the power of words.

For Orissa, therefore, this party may not emerge as the alternative, even though it is true that there are many in it, whom people of the State know as less corrupt and more competent than others.

Remote possibility

In the circumstances, an united left is the only credible alternative which can be made available to Orissa, if both the Communist Parties – the CPI and CPI(M) – can convince the people that they are repentant for their hobnobbing with the right viruses in the past in thirst for power and honor the revolutionaries whom the compradors are condemning and their collaborators in administration are torturing.  

Such a left combine can constitute a progressive front with Pyari babu and his team of the BJD rebels; and, if this could be possible, it may also be possible for the less corrupt elements of BJP to join hands with this front.

There are many in civil society that are opposed to Naveen Patnaik  in the cause of eco-systems, in the cause of environment, in the cause of human rights, jin the cause of right to employment, right to education, right to good health, and right to fair living et cetera.

The united left front, if it could be possible as contemplated above, can attract their active or moral support.Thus, an alternative may emerge.

But as on now it is not visible.

Nalini Mohanty No More; Orissa Bereft of a Popular Politician

A fighter against many odds from the young days, Nalini Mohanty gave a fight against death till breathing his last in the afternoon of Friday. Orissa lost a popular politician.

He was a smiling face in Orissa Assembly whose wits were matched with preparedness to participate in its proceedings. Minister many a times, he was seldom in controversy, but always in excellent control over his portfolios.

Majority of his career spent in anti-Congress camp, he had succumbed to ‘supremo-syndrome’ in BJD and joined the Congress, where he had soon been recognized as an asset.

While in Opposition, his attacks on the treasury benches were razor-sharp, yet his target was never personally wounded. As a minister he was seldom stonewalled; but whenever he was being horned in, the fellows in the officers gallery were sure that he was not letting them down.

In his demise, we have a feeling of loss too. Leaders across political parties, watchdogs irrespective of allegiance, general public of and outside his constituency have paid him obituary tributes. We add ours to them.

To People of Athgarh, Ranendra Pratap Swain Should be the Choice

Subhas Chandra Pattanayak

Athgarh being my home area, where there are people who genuinely love me and often seek my advice even in their personal/family matters, I wonder, what should my people do in the re-election from Athgarh constituency to Orissa Legislative Assembly?

Had I not been on a foreign tour, I would have campaigned for Ranendra Pratap Swain, because, I feel he should be the choice.

His only drawback is that he is a BJD candidate. Again, it is his plus point.

Let me elaborate.

The viewers of orissamatters.com know that I have shown in earlier discussions how BJD had conspired to keep Swain out of the Assembly, as it is he, who, despite being in the treasury benches, was the voice of conscience against whatever wrong the government was carrying out. Under pressure from above, the Athgarh Returning Officer had replaced his original party ticket lying in his safe custody with a xerox copy and rejected his nomination on the ground of non-submission of the original and inked document. I could have taken it that, keeping the issuance of the party ticket pending till the last moment, the BJD office had issued only the xeroxed copy of the ticket with the party stamp to Swain with the hope that with no time left to submit the papers, he would rush to the RO office and submit the same sans verification at his end. Swain being the sitting MLA had no reason to disbelieve the ticket so received from the party. The issuer of the ticket must have calculated this in advance; as otherwise, a pageboy of Swain’s local office at Athgarh could not have been ready with his papers before Swain and submitted the same and ultimately emerged as the party supported independent candidate dazzling the voters with active campaign conducted in his support by the BJD supremo-cum-Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik. But the way, the same pageboy fought the election case up to the Supreme Court engaging costliest lawyers of the country, with the party keeping mum over the entire period, made me convinced that BJD had deliberately played the trick. To represent such a party is not a compelling cause for choice.

But, yet, this is Swain’s plus point.

That, the same BJD has made him its candidate is a victory for Swain. He has made his party understand that its steps were wrong. Despite the discernible subterfuge, Swain has never gone against BJD and its President. This is the greatest proof of his adherence to discipline and principle, which has become very rare in politics.

This is why I feel Swain should be the choice of my people at Athgarh.

It would be not out of place to mention of how forty poor persons have died most pathetically last month in areas not quite distant from Athgarh by consuming liquor, allegedly spurious, leading to resignation of A.U.Singhdeo, the Excise Minister of the relevant day.

This reminds me of Kalandi Behera, the then Excise Minister, who had to resign on 25 April, 2006 after liquor, allegedly spurious, had taken toll of 39 lives in Ganjam, the district of the Chief Minister. Behera had planned to open liquor shops in every nook and corner of Orissa including school areas. And, to fulfill his purpose, an excise policy was created under Notification No.520/2004/1410/Ex dated 28.2.2005. I was the first and the only one to have attacked this evil design in these pages on August 28,2005 under the caption “Orissa is in the worst phase of her life”. Naveen Patnaik’s government wanted to legalize Behera’s design by giving it the shape of a Law. Orissa Excise Bill 2005 was accordingly produced. Before the Bill was adopted, Behera had to go as people of Ganjam started abusing the Chief Minister openly alleging that he was patronizing the hooch mafia as no action was taken against the culprits even after repeated death due to spurious liquor.

After Behera resigned, Debi Prasad Mishra, who represents Baramba constituency from my Sub-Division, succeeded him and the Bill was revived.

Famous Gandhian Smt. Sarala Devi campaigned against the Bill. No political heavyweight was seen supporting Sarala Devi. None from BJD, particularly. As she did not get any active political support from even the Opposition (the Congress party) (and the BJP-now in Opposition- was then in Naveen’s coalition government ), she tried to make a written appeal to members of the Assembly wishing their conscience to wake up to reject the Bill. But she was not permitted to enter into the Assembly premises to do that.

It is Ranendra Pratap Swain alone who stood with Sarala Devi without any care for official position of the Bill. He circulated Sarala Devi’s emotionally charged letter amongst all the members of the House inside the Hall and succeeded in stopping the instant passage of the Bill. It was then sent to a select committee formed with Swain as a member.

It was everybody’s impressions that the government was determined to get the Bill get the select committee approval. But Swain, despite being a ruling party frontbencher, stoutly opposed the intent of the Bill and the select committee had to pass it with single note of descent that Swain had expressed.

This is why I feel Swain should be the choice of my people at Athgarh.

It is Swain again who to the chagrin of the CM had supported the protest of Sambalpur region farmers and general public against allocation of water from Hirakud reservoir to big industries.
It is he, and only he amongst BJD MLAs, who had vehemently opposed the official proposal to give Anil Agrawal 10,000 Acres of land for Vedant University at Puri.

He was the man who had on records supported the Niyamagiri campaign and demanded that the mines monger be not allowed to tamper with living environment and natural faith epitome of the tribes.

In the Assembly, every now and then, Swain was seen as the pro-people voice against administration as and when executive steps seemed anti-people.

This is why I feel Swain should be the choice of my people at Athgarh.

In Athgarh, Swain is being challenged mainly by the Congress and the BJP. When the Congress under prime-ministership of Dr. Manmohan Singh has been working as an agent organization of American interest and has been actively pursuing a nuclear deal that Singh has signed with USA on dotted lines, which, in reality is coined to provide a “bonanza for US firms” (Reuters, August 25, 2007) and “is so clearly in the interest of the United States” (Reuters, August 14, 2007), the BJP reminds us how, when in power, it had drowned the country so much in corruption and destruction of India’s public sector while coloring its misrule as Bharata Udaya that the Election Commission had to use force to put under cover its hoardings, built up all over India by misusing national exchequer. Notwithstanding who are the candidates of these two parties, it would be contributing to nullification of awareness against corruption and misrule if any of them get electoral support.

On the other hand, despite all its failing and anti-people activities, BJD stands on the ground of allegiance to Orissa as the State’s only regional party. Orissa needs a strong political party of her own for safeguarding the interests of the State. In these pages, I have severely criticized Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik for his failings and for misrule. Yet, to me, BJD is better than the Congress and the BJP in in absence of a strong communist alternative. It is Orissa’s own party and should be considered a permanent feature as leaders are always temporary. It should not be allowed to be defeated by either the Congress or the BJP, for misguided faults of its leader.

In a political party where its leader is known by the epithet ‘supremo’, sycophants are the greater dangers than the so-called supremo himself. From the few instances I have mentioned above, it is clear that Swain is not a sycophant.

This is why I feel Swain should be the choice of my people at Athgarh.

Hindol Tangle: Will the Truth Really Prevail?

Subhas Chandra Pattanayak

Nabaghan’s alleged letter to Police Superintendent (SP) of Dhenkanal district, according to news, is carrying his signature as evaluated by the State Forensic Laboratory. In this letter, he is alleged to have alleged that there was threat to his life from his area MLA Ms. Anjali Behera, rewarded by Chief Minister with elevation to the cabinet rank from Minister of State.

This evaluation of the Forensic Lab has ignited a new demand for immediate dismissal of Ms. Behera from the Council of Ministers and her arrest and prosecution for extermination of Nabaghan, her alleged political rival and detractor in the constituency.

Even, in a panel discussion in Kamyab TV last evening, Sri Narendra Swain, a Secretary of BJD, the party of Anjali to which Nabaghan also belonged, has asserted that action would certainly be taken against the district SP as his inaction on Nabaghan’s letter culminated in his killing. Had the SP diligently acted, Nabaghan might have been saved, he has said. There is no dearth of political sophomores in BJD to vomit nonsense in public forums and therefore I am not inclined to put any premium on what the BJD secretary has unauthorizedly said in the Kamyab TV panel.

When the matter is sub judice, the BJD secretary’s assertion is absolutely irresponsible; because, it is to be determined whether or not the letter in question has any real relevance to Nabaghan’s death.

But commonsense suggests, if the rivalry between the two top BJD leaders of Hindol – Nabaghan in the chair of the Chairman of the Panchayat Samiti as against Anjali’s position as MLA – had gone into the extent of threat to life, the ruling party must have noticed the acrimony.

If Nabaghan could write this alleged letter to the SP, he must have written to his party and the party supremo several times before writing this alleged letter about the threat to his life from the party MLA-cum-Minister.

Why BJD and its supremo-cum-Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik did not take any step to solve the tangle?

Why Narendra did not utter a single word about it if such a life threatening tangle was really there?

Why the police is not exploring this angle?

Whether or not Nabaghan was murdered, as is being alleged, is a matter to be determined by the Court.

But what about talks in the grapevine that Nabaghan’s loss of life was not caused by Anjali but by an accidental hit on the zigzag hilly village road against a vehicle?

In Nabaghan’s case, if his letter to the SP seeking protection from Anjali is genuine, the BJD and its supremo Naveen Patnaik must first be held responsible for the loss of life, for having failed to solve the tangle in their own organizational platform. On the other hand, one would read from the letter that there was acute acrimony between Nabaghan and Anjali, which the local BJD workers deny.

The so-called letter of Nabaghan to the SP carries his alleged signature only, not his handwriting.

If he would sure have written this letter, it could entirely have been written by Nabaghan in his own hand.

He had neither any computer to type the alleged letter in his residence nor had he known typing in a computer.

He had not gone out of his village to type it elsewhere during the relevant time. No evidence to that effect is available.

Besides, Nabaghan had not gone to Dhenkanal to meet the SP on the alleged date.

Had he really prepared the letter elsewhere and signed the alleged letter and delivered the same to the SP, it could certainly have been in the records of the SP office. It is not on records there.

No figment of imagination can even accept that a SP refuses to receive such a letter from a Panchayat Samiti Chairman. It simply is not possible.

Everybody who knows how administration runs, knows it.

There may not be any action on any letter from a people’s representative, but a SP refusing to receive a letter from a Panchayat Samiti Chairman in person, when the same was to indicate a threat to his life, is impossible.

It is being touted that the SP was influenced by Anjali, the Minister, as a result of which he did not accept Nabaghan’s letter. If the SP had good relationship with Anjali, he had no bad relationship with Nabaghan.

On the other hand, if instead of relying on his party supremo – the Chief Minister – Nabaghan had preferred to rely upon the SP, then it is indicative of the reality that Nabaghan had reliable relationship and rapport with the SP and hence, it cannot be accepted that the SP had refused to receive the letter he had written him.

Had the SP, despite good relationship with Nabaghan, refused to accept the letter, he being a political bigwig of Hindol – holding the highest post in the Panchayat Samiti as its Chairman – was certainly equipped with the acumen to send the same to the SP by registered post with copies thereof communicated to the Director General of Police and the Home Secretary as well as the Chief Minister mentioning therein that he had to prefer the registered post as the SP refused to accept it.

Nabaghan had never done this.

So, it is clear that he had never written this letter to the SP of Dhenkanal.

On the other hand, it seems, the so-called letter to the SP has been typed on a sheet of paper where Nabaghan had put his signature earlier. This is certain, because the typing has been made to accommodate the signature.

Hence, despite Nabaghan’s signature, the alleged letter to the SP is a forged letter, no doubt.

If the SP had not received the alleged letter and the DGP or the Home Secretary or the Chief Minister was not served with a copy thereof, where from it emerged?

As it transpires, one Nabakishore Sahu – a Dhenkanal based lawyer – has supplied the alleged letter to Crime Branch after more than a week of Nabaghan’s death. Why he did it and how?

Let the CB investigate and find out the answers to these questions and let the Court do justice by searching for the answers.

Role of Nabakishore Sahu, lawyer needs be probed into

This much is relevant to recall at this stage, that, for more than a year before his death, Nabaghan was not holding any meeting of the Panchayat Samiti for which there was stalemate in implementation of various development programs. It had led the District Collector to convey a meeting of the Panchayat Samiti in his chamber at Dhenkanal. There was apprehensions that the Samiti may be superseded and therefore, Nabaghan was to seek judicial protection against possible supersession by invoking writ jurisdiction of the High Court. Nabakishore Sahu, the Dhenkanal based lawyer, who has given the alleged letter to CB, was his counsel. Therefore, it may be suspected that Nabaghan’s signature in plain paper was collected for judicial use by this lawyer, who has given the signed-on-typed-sheet alleged letter purported to be of Nabaghan to the CB, wherein the alleged threat to his life from Anjali forms the crux.

Was this lawyer having any grudge against Anjali? Perhaps yes. A close confident of Anjali for around a decade, he was eager to be reappointed as a Public Prosecutor and had pinned his hope on her. But he did not get the reappointment. He had reason to suspect that Anjali was responsible for denial of the APP post to him. It may be, he was determined to settle the score. And, perhaps, therefore, he used the signed plain paper to drag in Anjali to the murder angle by typing the so-called letter on it.

If CB investigation does not unsettle this suspicion, it would not be improper to assume that after transforming the accidental death of Nabaghan into an alleged murder, the son of Bijay Raut has been wrongfully arrested by shrewd exploitation of circumstances and confusion in the police to generate credibility for the cooked up allegation on the premises of Bijay’s good relationship with Anjali.

In this nasty game that the vested interest fellows play, if an innocent young man gets punished, it would be a sad blot on society.

Hence, these angles need urgent cogitation and exhaustive investigation and the media need be self-disciplined and far from being rash. Otherwise, the truth may not really prevail.

Daspalla Acts Advance Crematory For BJD

Subhas Chandra Pattanayak

Even as internecine strife has started shaking the Biju Janata Dal (BJD) that rules over Orissa, Daspalla – an Assembly constituency – has, on May 24, acted its crematory in advance, with its rank and file burning down its flag in a fierce free-for-all amongst themselves and its MLA Kashinath Mallik lodging criminal complaints against party parliamentarian Rudramadhab Roy in the Police.

Details of how the BJD members of the two conflicting camps jeered and hackled each other do not deserve mention. Significant is the fact that in the bitter wrangle, workers of the party burnt down party flags and tore off Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik’s photo spangled vests that their rival camp colleagues had worn.

Many Faces of Conflict

BJD MLA Bijay Singh Bariha has, last week, pointed his finger directly at Naveen by alleging that he was asked to resign from the cabinet because of his opposition to allocation of revered hills and soils – the tribals’ living environment – to multinational corporations.

On the other hand, two of the expelled ministers – Dr. Damodar Raut and Debasis Nayak – have castigated the Chief Minister as a fantoccini puppet dancing as exactly the strings are being pulled by Rajyasabha Member Pyari Mohan Mohapatra.

A few days ago, Chairman of Hindol Panchayat Samiti belonging to BJD, whose acrimony with party MLA-cum-Minister Ms. Anjali Behera was discernibly sharp and acute, was killed by a hit-and-run vehicle. When the Police admits that the real culprit is absconding, it has drafted into trial the son of a Sarpanch, who is known as a supporter of the Minister.

From dependable persons of the locality it transpires that the boy apprehended by the Police is a physically fragile boy of impaired faculty who for a serious disease is under treatment of a Mumbai based hospital and is too inane to overcome Police promptings even though that goes against him.

Scapegoats are not unreal in prosecution in such cases. But that, the son of a known supporter of the BJD MLA-cum-Minister is taken into custody in the matter of murder of the Panchayat Samiti Chairman, who belonged also to BJD, speaks volumes of how the ruling party in Orissa is busy in mutually destructive strifes.

In the organizational level, the party is posing to be one and united; but in reality, a cold war between Naveen and Pyari has started brewing.

Confused stalwarts are trying to project the scenario of two of their senior colleagues – Raut and Nayak – pointing accusing fingers at Pyari babu as incidents of personality clash. But, them coming out one after another with the same pattern of statements is suggestive of a deep-rooted crisis that has already spread into its deeper layers.

Daspalla, in this context, is of interesting significance. The tussle there did not stop at clash between two personalities: the MLA and the MP. It involved the rank and file of BJD.


Let us see.

The BJD Scenario

This Party has a President who has not been changed since its inception and the same President is also the Chief Minister ever since the party has grabbed power in Orissa. Hence the government it runs is not answerable to the Party.

With both the top posts in his hand, Naveen acts as an autocrat and members of the party practice sycophancy to keep him pleased so that they can continue deriving benefits as members of the ruling party.

Whosoever fails to keep him pleased gets ousted from his post and even from the primary membership of the party. Ouster of founding members who did not resort to sycophancy is a standing cause that prods all its members, specifically the leaders in lower ladders, to try to surpass each other in showing loyalty to the party autocrat.

Conversely, they also engage themselves in sabotaging loyalty shows of rivals in the party.

This happened in Daspalla.

But this is not the whole truth. The party being one, its rank and file could not have attacked each other to the effect of ruining the party’s official program – Yuva Sankalpa Yatra – even though that was being carried out by Mallik, the MLA, allegedly the local rival of Roy, the MP.

So what was the reason of such hostility?

As per vox populi, the hostility came from sharp pangs of jealousy over sharing the haul out of the welfare funds.

Orissa is marked for corruption and misappropriation of maximum portion of welfare funds by the politicians-in-power in nexus with the bureaucracy. And, the constituency has witnessed how both the leaders have tried to have their respective preferred persons in various official positions in Daspalla. This they have done in order to help their respective followers rule over the welfare funds with the cooperation of their preferred officers.

Thus is Daspalla

Daspalla was Roy’s original political base. As it changed into a reserved category constituency, BJD offered him the nearest Parliamentary constituency of Kandhamal, while planting Mallik in this constituency for the Assembly.

When Roy was the sole leader in Daspalla constituency, the entire lot of officials were cooperating with his supporters. But Mallik’s emergence as the most material leader in the constituency divided the scope. This had, in onlookers’ opinion, given birth to conflicts between the supporters of both of them. Hence, it is feared that the tussle in Daspalla was driven not alone by the two leaders’ respective anxiety over ingratiation with the party supremo, but also by avarice for lucre in BJD’s grassroots.

This is a serious syndrome that shows to what low the State has been dragged down by the BJD government. However, Daspalla has also enkindled a hope that the dinosaurs shall soon eat up each other and vanish.

When the State awaits to know: who really killed the Panchayat Samiti Chairman of Hindol and why; whether or not Bariha’s ouster as minister was factored by his opposition to transfer of tribals’ living environment to industries and how far Raut and Nayak are right in blaming Pyari Mohapatra for remote-controlling the CM-cum-supremo of the party for wrong purposes, the severe strife amongst its rank and file at Daspalla apparently ignited by avarice for lucre has made it clear that the doomsday for BJD is not very far away.

Thus Daspalla appears as crematory in advance for BJD.

If Pyari Mohapatra Is Not Dismissed, He Will Replace Naveen Patnaik as CM

Subhas Chandra Pattanayak

The ruling BJD in Orissa is taking a bizarre turn. If its supremo Naveen Patnaik does not dismiss Pyari Mohan Mohapatra from the party, then there is every possibility of the latter replacing him as the CM.

Members of BJD are deeply disillusioned with Sri Patnaik.

In his first two terms, they were not very vociferous about his maladministration, because he was heading a coalition with BJP. But, during the last two years of his third term, more and more members of its legislative wing have stripped his government layer by layer in the legislative Assembly. The recent cabinet reshuffle is being seen as a step taken in nervous reaction to this disillusionment.

In the past, Patnaik had used the tactics of toleration if that was helpful in retention of his position. Samir De was an instance. It seems, he has been using the same tactics as regards Pyari babu.

He has, to save his own skin, used many times the tactics of jettison from his cabinet as and when headlines have focused on felonies carried out in his rule. Kalandi Behera and Pramila Mallik are instances.

He is also known for using the tactics of termination from party to preempt any threat to his leadership. Bijay Mohapatra is an instance.

He is now using tactics of induction to tame the loudmouths. Induction of Pradip Maharathy to the cabinet in recent reshuffle is an instance.

But despite all these tactics, threat to his position has not subsided.

As more and more instances of corruption come to light by way of media expositions, audit objections and judicial determinations, his credibility is plunging down sans any chance of revival and majority of the members of his party is getting discernibly disillusioned.

In such a situation Naveen has only one option.

As most of the people in Orissa believe that Naveen’s administration runs according to instructions of the de facto CM Pyari Mohan Mohapatra, he can openly admit his failure, attribute the failure to his innocence and belief in the ‘Uncle’, as Pyari babu is generally known in his context.

Instead of tactics of toleration, he can use tactics of termination and oust Pyari babu from BJD, holding him responsible for the entire gamut of maladministration. In that case, he can regain his lost credibility by hoodwinking the people and further consolidate his position by instituting a commission of inquiry against him to determine how far has he corrupted administration by misuse of his position.

He knows, fellows belonging to the category of Dr. Damodar Raut, whom Pyari babu is a fifth columnist, will forget their insult and rush back to rally behind him to ensure that he does not face any debacle.

He had used tactics of termination from the party against its founding leader Bijaya Mohapatra and can use the same tactics against Pyari babu, as without such a shock effect, ways for restoration of his credibility will not open in emerging situations. As is his wont, this is not impossible. And, perhaps this is the only option available to him.

But, if he fails to do so, what will happen?

BJD cannot bag a fresh mandate.

Therefore, it would be imperative for the majority in BJD to revolt against Naveen and to replace him with Pyari babu.

In fact, if BJD is to continue in power, it can be possible only through such a step.

Had Pyari babu not engineered the collapse of its coalition with BJP and rejuvenated it by enkindling hope in BJD aspirants that were being left out under compulsion of coalition, the party, already tainted by then on many counts, could not even have faced the public in the 2009 hustings.

It is Pyari babu, who alone instigated the BJD to cut off the alliance with BJP and to put up candidates in all the constituencies that were left in the BJP fold and it is he who most aggressively had conducted its campaign both against the BJP and the Congress.

When the suddenly deserted BJP was at its wits’ end, the next major political party – the Indian National Congress, with a new President hailing from a tyrant family that during kingship had tortured its subjects beyond comparison in the history of inhumanity, was not in a position to challenge.

Astute Pyari had studied the situation and had audaciously drawn up his strategy and carried his party to the monumental success that he alone had visualized.

If he has really stymied POSCO by secretly siding with the Communists, as alleged by Dr, Damodar Raut after his ouster as a minister, then it can be said without any travesty of truth, that for the BJD in its present condition, he is the only available panacea. This party is not based on any political economy. Its only base was regionalism, which Naveen has ruined by putting indigenous people in mare’s nest in his act of serving the interest of the agents, proponents and practitioners of imperialism. So, there is no reason for the people to support this government again.

Only a change in leadership can save the ship of BJD from sinking.

If members of BJD are in a political party, they are there because of their ambitions for power and avarice for lucre.

That matters, not Naveen.

Hence, if, taking advantage of his present position, Naveen does not dismiss Pyari babu on grounds he himself can contrive or on the ground of allegation of stymieing POSCO as raised by Dr.Raut, then the BJD members, who, to feel safe to play the game of aggrandizement, need a covering canopy over their head, will replace him with Pyari babu.

If this does not happen, next election may bring in worse fellows to power in Orissa, but not the BJD.