Abduction of MLA Jhina Hikaka: Whither are We?

Subhas Chandra Pattanayak

“The general public of Koraput District are facing numerous socio-economic hardships due to liquor trade and also dying premature due to consumotion of liquor. So there should be total prohibition in this scheduled District for the improvement and all round development of the masses as well as locality”.

Thus had written Jhina Hikaka, MLE from Laxmipur to Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik in a letter he had coauthored with other elected representatives of Koraput District and were he to attend the Assembly, he was to stress on this in his debate. This was not acceptable to his party, the ruling party.

In this letter, he had also stressed on preservation of the eco-system of the hill ranges of Mali and Deomali. When this was also not palatable to the ruling party, his participation in the Assembly might possibly have embarassed the government were he to make a mention of this matter.

The letter had also stressed on stoppage of state terror perpitrated on innocent people in the guise of hounding left ultras just to subject the people to waves of intimidation so that they remain too panicked to open their mouths against illadministration. Had he participated in Assembly proceedings, there was possibility of this matter gushing out into debates. That could have embarassed the government.

“We further request you to undertake steps to curtail PC (percentage) to government officials in contract works”, the letter underlined. This is how the letter not only stressed on end of a wrong practice, but also exposed how development projects are being looted by contractors in nexus with authorites as work orders are being placed with the contractors by officials pocketing portions of their profit by means of percentage. This matter could have embarassed the government had Hikaka been present in the Assembly to participate in debates.

Another point stressed in the letter is anathema to Naveen Patnaik’s administration as it prods the Chief Miniter into action for release of the members of Chasi Mulia Sangh, imlicated in false cases by the police and wrongfully kept in jails even after competent courts have acquitted them. Had Hekaka got the opportunity, he could have raised this point to the embarrassment of the CM in real sense.

Is it, hence, possible that his alleged abduction is engineered by the ruling party to prempt any debate on these points in the ongoing session?

Question may arise as to why he alone has been picked up – if at all the ruling party has engineered it – when two other MLAs, Rabi Narayan Nanda of Joypore and Raghuram Podal of Koraput, who are also competent to raise the issue in the Assembly, had also subscribed the letter?

The possible answer lies in the distingishability of Hikaka from others of BJD, as it is he, who alone is close to Chasi Mulia Sangh to the extent of being the factor of BJD’s alliance with it in the Panchayat polls that has, on the basis of this alliance only, given the ruling party the Chair of the Koraput Zilla Parisad.

Whither really are we?

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Assembly Should Refrain From Paying Obituary Respects To Uniformed Personnel

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Let the patriots brood over this matter.