JUDGES ARE NOT LORDS OVER THE REPUBLIC

Subhas Chandra Pattanayak

Every Indian is proud of the fact that he / she belongs to the Republic of India. But every patriotic Indian is embarrassed over the fact that this Republic stands synonymous with contradiction and corruption. This is because; post-independence India has failed to honor the wishes of its founding fathers.

The father of the nation, Mahatma Gandhi, had expressly wished that in free India, the Governments must keep in mind the poorest person while drafting the Plans for the country. His followers reduced his wishes to mere wishful thinking. When Congressmen are busy in competition to become factotums of Sonia Gandhi, why should we think that they could at any point of time have given importance to Mahatma Gandhi? History cannot but say that the Congress Government that stepped into power immediately after independence would be remembered for two things: one, for failure to save Gandhiji from the assassin and two, for declaring the Communist Party of India illegal so that in Constitution making, the propertied class should face no problem in safe guarding its own interest.

Giving vent to his deep dissatisfaction over failure to protect poor peoples’ interest in the Constitution, in his concluding address to the Constituent Assembly, Dr. B.R.Ambedkar had noted, “On 26th January 1950, we are going to enter into a life of contradiction. In politics we will have equality and in social and economic rights, we will have inequality. In politics we will be recognizing the principle of one man and one vote, one value. In our social and economic rights we shall by reason of our social and economic structure, continue to deny one man, one value.” (Constituent Assembly Debates, Vol.XI, p.979)

This inequality, as analyzed by Shibanikinkar Chaube in ‘Constituent Assembly of India’ (PPH, 1973), was caused by “the pressure of the propertied class”.

When President Rajendra Prasad was to admit that “the defects are inherent in the situation in the country”(Constituent Assembly Debates, Vol.XI, p.993), Dr. Ambedkar had expressed serious doubts over longevity of the Republic. “We must remove this contradiction at the earliest possible moment or else those who suffer from inequality will blow up the structure of political democracy which this Assembly has so laboriously built up”, he had warned.

But Governments of India have never heeded to his warning as a result of which India has already become two Indias.

Political equality has kept the geographical India in tact, but economic inequality has brought majority of Indians look at a handful of Indians as of a different India, best captioned in apolitical popular slogans like “Tere India mahan, mere Bharat pareshan”, which roughly means, your India may be great, but my Bharat is in turmoil.

We must try to stop this rising feeling of two Indias. We must cast off hypocrisy to admit that Ambedkar’s warning not heeded to, the victims of inequality have started to “blow up the structure of political democracy” that the founding fathers of Indian Republic had “so laboriously built up”. Terminating Naxals by military guns or using State terror to silent the oppressed poor will not close up the gap between these two Indias. Elimination of economic inequality will do.

But how has economic inequality become so massive? A man who was working for a paltry sum of Rs.300/- only per month three decades prior to his death died as the owner of around Rs.70,000 Crores and the luminaries of this country beginning from the Prime Minister to newspaper editors, instead of telling the nation as to where from and how he earned this massive money, cried over his death like widows cry over the pyres of their husbands!

This syndrome has encouraged the mafia. And, in our country, where Laws are so rampant, no mafia could have grown without backing of the Law Enforcement Authorities (LEA).

This gives us a sad feeling of black sheep presence in our LEAs that includes also the Judiciary.

It is not for nothing that a demand for disclosure of properties of Judges is so constant.

Many a judges even of higher judiciary have exhibited such conduct that not only the Chief Justice or Collegiums of Judges have felt the need for action against them, but also the general public has started looking at Judges askance. Peoples have started believing the Cinema depictions that behind every high profile mafia, there must be a Judge!

In such circumstances, it is better for the republic if property-list of every public functionary including the members of Judiciary, whosoever draws salary from taxpayer’s money is disclosed.

To avoid embarrassment over disclosure on demand, the property list of every public functionary should be authentically posted in the Internet in the portals of the institution he or she works with.

The Chief Justice of India Hon’ble Justice K G Balakrishnan in a recent response has disapproved the necessity of property disclosure in respect of senor Judges.

It is really indecent to ask the Judges to disclose their properties list. It connotes to expressing no confidence on Judges. Ethically it is not proper.

Personally I may stand with the views of the CJI as to me, Judiciary being the last refuge of our peoples, Judges should never be subjected to peoples asking for their properties list.

But as India is crumbling into two Indias, as observed supra, it is imperative that to equip peoples for defeating plutocracy and for putting leash on corruption that has so far served plutocracy and savagely widened the gap between economically unequal peoples of the country and to save the motherland from the “contradiction” so correctly pointed out by Dr. Ambedkar, the Judges should post their properties list in the respective portals of the High Courts and the Supreme Court for anybody to see that without indulging in demands to know of their properties under the Right To Information Act.

It should be appropriate for the Judges to appreciate that notwithstanding all the respects, we the general public of India unambiguously pay them, they are not and cannot be the Lords over the Republic.

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THE CABINET MUST NOT MUSS UP ORISSA

Subhas Chandra Pattanayak
The following mail has been posted to Chief Minister Navin Patnaik and his cabinet colleagues :

It would be followed up.

CHIEF MINISTER MUST STOP THE DRAMA DIALOGUE AND ACT

Subhas Chandra Pattanayak

Law will take its own course – is a dialogue that always emits from the lips of Chief Minister Navin Patnaik whenever the drama of his administration unveils a new scene of felony against our people.

The people have enough tolerated this idiotic dialogue because of their magnanimity. But they won’t any more.

He had no political experience when he was posted as Chief Minister by Biju’s discredited barrel-bearers, who, sans a mask, had no chance of entering into the power corridor in post-Biju Orissa. Therefore the phrase “Law will take its own course” was taken as his ploy to escape immediate responsibility pending action. But with passage of time, it was clear that he had no inclination to take any appropriate action against any illegality and he had developed the habit of saying “law will take its own course’ as a trick to cover up all illegalities.

It is a shame that he is unable to understand what the law says. Umpteen times, in these pages, we have shown instances of his inability to understand the laws; Ardhendu Sarangi’s case being the latest.

In my last discussion in this matter, I have shown how Sarangi obstructed medico-legal steps of the on-duty doctors of capital hospital in order to suppress the criminal offense perpetrated in the privacy of his residence. From tampering with the cuprous delicti to concealing the crime commissioned, every punishable aspect of his criminal conduct has been exposed therein.

The apprehension expressed therein that cultivation of a surrogate offender in exchange of money for saving their skins by the Sarangis might not be ruled out has almost come true as the man, arrested by Police, has disclosed how he succumbed to allurement of job and cash offered by the Sarangis in claiming responsibility for the offense he never committed. A TV channel report having carried this disclosure, local newspapers have made headlines thereon and though 3 days have elapsed, neither Sarangis nor the police have dared to deny it.

So, the Sarangis, particularly Ardhendu is guilty of concealment of the crime committed by him or any or all of his family, individually or collectively, in the guarded privacy of his residence on May 21, 2008 against life of class IV employee Ramesh Sethi, who was illegally pressed on domestic works. He is guilty further of keeping the crime concealed by cowing down on-duty doctors of capital hospital and for having intervened in discharge of their medico-legal duties. If the disclosure hinted to above is not incorrect, Sarangi is guilty of cultivating a surrogate offender to conceal the crime and to derail the legal investigation.

Chief Minister Navin Patnaik can save his own skin if he peruses the legal position discussed in these pages in this specific matter and, being the Police minister himself, initiate action against the Police Officer who has deliberately sloughed over Section 39 of Cr.P.C. and relevant sections of IPC as yet and collaborated with Sarangi in projecting a surrogate offender in an attempt to protect the real offender in this case.

During last eight years in power he has not been able to learn Oriya even when non-Oriya officers posted to Orissa are finding it easy to learn this beautiful language within two to three months of their posting. Therefore I have my doubts on his ability to learn. Whether or not he is able to learn the law in this case is a matter for him to prove for which it would be desirable on his part to discard the “law will take its own course” dialogue and act.

WHY MURLI DEORA WAS HAPPILY LAUGHING WHILE HIKING PETROL PRICE?

Subhas Chandra Pattanayak

Most of Indians are crying sans any escape because of the unprecedented hike in oil price. Lest this helplessness transforms into wrath in the ballot boxes in the coming elections, the speaking mask of Congress hypocrisy, Sonia Gandhi, has asked the State Governments run by her Subedars to lessen the burden of the hike on the peoples of their respective States by reducing provincial sales tax on oil under their jurisdictions.

We have marked Man Mohan Singh’s meretricious tears when he was trying to be stoical while saying the nation that though he knew that the hike would certainly badly affect the people, he had no other way to mitigate the losses oil companies in India were facing in view of price rise in international arena.

But why Murli Deora, Indian Minister of Petroleum, was so effusively laughing while going to tell the Press of the hike? Was he laughing at the misfortune of the people of India? Or was he inadvertently reflecting the laughs elsewhere efflorescing? Should the real reasons of his laugh be known, the real reasons of hike in gasoline price could also be known.

But India is a country where the peoples do not know where the shoe pinches.

The peoples could not know why Sonia Gandhi, the most material witness to Indira Gandhi’s last breath was not interrogated in the matter of what had she seen in Indira’s murder.

They could not know why Rajiv Gandhi rewarded R.K.Dhawan by appointing him to the most powerful position in his regime, instead of punishing him after the Judicial Commission enquiring into the Indira’s assassination had unambiguously observed that the needle of suspicion was strongly pointing at him only.

They could not know why Man Mohan Singh in his earlier avatar of RBI Chief had allowed BCCI to open a branch at Mumbai in spite of strong objections from India’s external intelligence agency RAW on the ground of its suspected role as a conduit of ISI, CIA in nefarious deals like drug money laundering and terrorist funding etc.

They could not know why Vajpayee disregarded all democratic norms to retain George Fernandez as Defense Minister after reinstating him in the same position that he had relinquished on threadbare exposure of dubious defense deals.

They could not know wherefrom Vajpayee’s blue-eyed boy Pramod Mahajan, a whole time saffron worker with scant source of income, had amassed more than two thousand crores of Rupees by the time a family internecine attempt to grab portions of that illicit money extinguished his life in his brother’s barrel.

They could not know why Man Mohan Singh government ordered public prosecutor Lilian Delgado, India’s lawyer in the case seeking extradition of Ottavio Quattrocchi, to withdraw the appeal it had preferred in the Supreme Court of Argentina against the lower court order and thereby set him free.

They could not know why the CBI kept mum when Sten Lindstrom, chief Swedish investigator in the Bofors case revealed that it had met him “for just 20 minutes in 20 years” while summing up his impression in words like, “the CBI was just fooling the Indian people all this while”.

They could not know why the government kept mum when explaining as to why the CBI is unable to catch Quattrocchi, former CBI Joint Director BR Lal said, “the government is who controls the CBI. Now a servant can’t go against the master.”

Lal’s statement being a stark indicator to involvement of Prime Ministers from V.P.Singh to A.B.Vajpayee to Man Mohan Singh in covering up the offence against India by the so-called Gandhi Parivar and Quattrocchi, the peoples of this country could not as yet know as to why these Prime Ministers from V.P.Singh to Man Mohan Singh have tried to cover up the offence.

In such a country where traitors get all protection, who can know and how, why Murli Deora was in effusive laughs when he was going to announce the worst ever hike in petrol price?

A report in the global edition of New York Times, International Herald Tribune, says, citing to “the most recent figures from the U.S. Department of Energy” that Gasoline prices varying across India, consumers will pay about 50 rupees a liter or about $4.45 a gallon – well above the average $3.79 a gallon average that U.S. drivers are paying. So, people in poorer India are to pay more to the profit coffers of petrol companies than what the consumers in the rich country USA are paying!

When people in USA think that price of oil hike is due to war, PM Singh wants Indians to believe that the hike is because of “global” hike in price!

It cannot be ruled out that a few oil monopolists in Saudi and their business partners in USA are eyeing for even more profits. They just do it gradually as governments like that in India are not reluctant to financially cripple their own countrymen in order to pave ways for companies to fetch more profit as per their own designs.

But the real truth can come out if petroleum minister Murli Deora tells us honestly as to why he was so effusively laughing when his announcement of oil price hike was sure to push every honest Indian into financial perils; if, of course he was not laughing at India’s commons.

ORISSA WRITERS’ RAUCOUS VOICE RATTLES THE CAPITAL: IS IT POLITICAL?

Subhas Chandra Pattanayak

A distinguished section of Orissa’s men of letters has raised acrimonious objection to appointment of Husain Ravi Gandhi as President of Orissa Sahitya Akademi. He is a politician, now in Navin Patnaik’s camp and by appointing him as the President, the State Government has politically polluted the Akademi, they allege.

A look into the list of last Presidents of the Akademi reveals that many politicians who had no contribution to Oriya literature had occupied this Chair. Orissa’s writers who are now very vociferous against Husain’s appointment had kept their mouth shut at that time.

Not only they had kept their mouth shut, but also they had and even now they have kept themselves engaged in competing with each other to raise unbound slogans of praise in favor of the man who first set the precedence of appointing a personal political factotum sans any literatural merit as President of Orissa Sahitya Akademi. That man was Biju Patnaik.

Biju Patnaik, whose only marked disdain, when in power, was for probity, was the first Chief Minister under whose rule political pollution of the Sahitya Akademi had begun. He had appointed his political factotum Santos Sahoo as President of the Akademi on 23 September1963 and Sahoo had continued as such till 2 September1966.

The writers who are now raising voice against Husain’s appointment should explain as to why had they remained silent over Sahoo’s appointment.

In a signed article in Sambad, Prof. Nityananda Satapathy has today alleged that Husain is less than a third grade writer.

Who is he to give gradation to a writer and where from he got this carte blanche is not known to any. But it is known to everybody that Sahoo was not a writer and Satapathy had never objected to his placement as President of the Akademi.

All the writers beginning from veterans to the sophomores who have threatened to come down to streets in protest against Husain’s appointment have contributed to this climate of sycophancy by siding with Biju Patnaik through out.

What Biju had done by appointing his political factotum Sahoo as President of the Sahitya Akademi in 1963, his son Navin has done the same thing by appointing Husain in same post in 2008.

If the Oriya writers have never condemned Biju within these forty-five years for the wrong precedence he created in1963 in appointment of Akademi President, a precedence that has been followed many a times such as Sadashiv Tripathy (Chief Minister) self appointing himself as President of Sahitya Akademi on 3 September 1966, Nandini Satapathy appointing Gangadhar Mohapatra on 20 October 1975, Biju again through Nilamoni Rautray appointing Biswabhusan Harichandan on 26 June1977 etc and etc, why should they now condemn Navin for following his father’s footprint?

These fellows who have no qualms in grabbing whatever opportunity the Akademi throws to their advantage have never wanted or worked for the correct writing even of the history of the Akademi.

Except official projection that the Akademi was established in 1957, nothing is made available to the public about how and by whom with what aims and objects it was started.

People of Orissa do not know when it had died and who had caused that death. People do not know, what happened to its original purpose, to its original Constitution.

All that is available shows that on obliteration of the original Sahitya Akademi, a stick of tricks to beat down Orissa’s authors to acquiesce into official authority was conceived and created by Harekrushna Mahtab and his cronies in 1970 and the original Sahitya Akademi was misappropriated by them and was registered as a society under the Registration of Societies Act, 1860 on 25 July1970.

I deliberately stress on misappropriation of the Akademi by Mahtab and his cronies in view of the preamble of the Constitution on which the Akademi now stands.

It says, “Whereas it is considered expedient to establish a State Organisation to work actively for the development of Oriya literature and to set high literary standards to foster and co-ordinate literary activities and to promote through them all, the cultural unity of the State, we the following persons, hereby resolve to establish and operate the “Orissa Sahitya Akademi”.

Nowhere it is indicated that the Orissa Sahitya Akademi, established in 1957 was getting registered as a Society by the new office-bearers comprising Mahtab etc; but the preamble noted above has clearly declared that Mahtab and his companions took steps for “establishment” of the Akademi in 1970.

Therefore I stress that the original Orissa Sahitya Akademi was misappropriated by Mahtab and his group in 1970.

This group had formulated and registered the Constitution of the present Akademi that stipulates under Article 3 that there shall be only four Officers of the Akademi and they shall be the President. The Vice-President, the Treasurer and the Secretary. Artcles 4 to 7 of this Constitution stipulate that the State Government shall appoint all these four Officers. But nowhere there is any mention of any necessity of any of the officers being men or women of letters. So the State Government can appoint any idiot to any of the four offices of the Akademi if it so likes.

So, the question now is: who are the writers of Orissa to object to appointment of anybody to any post of the Akademi – President, Vice-President, Treasurer and Secretary – if they have no objection to the above provisions?

I have mentioned above how Biju had appointed his political factotum Santos Sahoo as President of Orissa Sahitya Akademi in 1963 and how Sadashiv Tripathy being the Chief Minister had self-appointed himself as its President in 1966.

If therefore, after R.N.Singhdeo headed a coalition government with Mahtab’s Jana Congress, it was thought prudent to kill that politically polluted Akademi and to give birth to a totally new Akademi with a new Constitution and to register the same under the Registration of Societies Act in order to add legality to the set-up as well as to the said Constitution, it should have developed as a democratic body of writers with elimination of every scope of any of its positions going to politicians or non-writers in future.

But that never happened.

Mahtab and his cronies willfully killed the purpose behind reincarnation of the Sahitya Akademi.

Ramakanta Rath was then the Secretary of Education & Cultural Affairs Department under Government of Orissa. He along with Sri B.C. Nayak constituted the Governing Body under presidentship of Mahtab. The other members, who constituted the General Body, were H.N.Das Mahapatra, the then Director of Cultural Affairs, Dr. S.C.Dash, the then Head of Department of Political science of Utkal University, Prof. G.B.Dhal, the then HoD of Oriya in Ravenshaw College and Sri B.N.Kar, the then Editor of Matrubhumi.

None of these fellows was elected by writers of Orissa to form the General Body of the new incarnation of Orissa Sahitya Akademi. This body was clamped on the peoples of Orissa. All of them were handpicked by Mahtab who was considered the Super Chief Minister of Orissa as R.N. Singhdeo was dependant on him for survival in Chief Minister’s chair. He picked up his cronies and formed the General Body and framed the Constitution and made it registered.

He was naturally shown as the President of the Akademi.

But how was he shown?

Not as a writer or organizer of literary events. He was shown as a “Political and Social Worker” by occupation.

So the new incarnation of the Akademi commenced its activities with a President who was so appointed not as a writer or man of letters, but as a “Political and Social Worker”.

Did the writers of Orissa object to that at that time? No.

Why didn’t they object to appointment of a man as President of the Sahitya Akademi in the capacity of a “Political and Social Worker” instead of as a Writer or a man of Letters?

It was simply because the writers were eager to please Mahtab with an eye on Bishuva Award that his Prajatantra Prachar Samity was granting. They were also eager to please Mahtab in order to earn favored treatment to their respective writings in Jhankar, the literary journal Mahtab was publishing.

What moral or legal rights then these writers have to object to Husain’s appointment?

It is worth mention that since the day the present Orissa Sahitya Akademi came into existence, instead of acting as conscience keepers of the state, most of Orissa’s writers have preferred to act like sycophants of persons in office. That is helping them in obtaining awards and in clearing obstacles from the path of their works entering into the arena of Book business named after Raja Ram Mohan Roy.

Due to this spiritual deterioration of Orissa authors, they have tolerated consecration of Giridhari Gamang, Hemananda Biswal and Navin Ptanaik in the President chair of Orissa Sahitya Akademi.

Either fear for persons in power or greed for awards has made contemporary writers of Orissa so spineless that they are not daring to call a spade a spade and taking advantage of this, agents of caste apartheid in Orissa are misusing official machineries to keep the historical poet Jaya Dev buried under legends so that his socio-political creed sic passim in his famous female centric love songs that had led Orissa to cast aside caste-culture and strengthen Buddhist tenets in the citadel of Sri Jagannatha remain obstructed forever from the present generation. Writers have a right to bring the right thing to public knowledge. But Orissa’s writers have remained too docile to go against persons who never want the peoples to know the right thing.

When this has been the trend so far, why all on a sudden they have raised a raucous voice against appointment of Husain as President of the Akademi? Particularly when this year is the last year of Navin Patnaik in power this leg?

I smell politics.

Navin’s misrule has so brutally dragged down Orissa to despondency that authors being sensitive people are no more able to tolerate. Their subconscious wrath was in search for a point of ventilation that the Akademi appointments have provided. Now one may look at it as a development that portends end of Navin misrule.

Politics has also its poisonous fang concealed under the writers’ emerging stir in Orissa. Prof. Satapathy, in the article hinted to above, has sharpened his attack on the ground that appointment of Husain is an act of appeasement to minority community. It is a shame that an author and a former Professor is looking into the matter in a communal color.

So, are the anti-Muslim communalists eager to take advantage of the disadvantage caused to Orissa Sahitya Akademi by its total bureaucratization?

In the circumstances, this is not surprising.

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POLICE PROSECUTES PRADIP; BUT PROTECTS IAS OFFICER SARANGI

Subhas Chandra Pattanayak

Police has started prosecution against Pradip, who alleged attempted to murder Class IV employee Ramesh Sethi in the residence of IAS officers Ardhendu and Madhur Sarangi on May 21. He has been remanded to judicial custody, as Police did not prefer any further investigation.

After committing the crime, Pradip had allegedly gone underground. Police obtained information on his whereabouts from his family and arrested him from Chennai where he was staying with one of his friends. He did not try to escape and readily came with Bhubaneswar Police and divulged why and how he assaulted Sethi.

Though the episode looks like a stage-managed drama, the Police have the liberty to close the chapter in respect to him because Pradip having declared to have perpetrated the crime, the Police, given its wont, cannot be expected to stretch the issue any further.

To keep the society safe from scoundrels, the Police in this case should do better by trying to find out if Pradip is acting or not as a cover. And, to assure us that he is not acting as a cover, Police should place before the public the details of his disposition and behavioral antecedents including instances, if any, of his brutality flared up in so sudden fury as we are being made to see in this instant case.

When for money, man is parting with his ancestral land; when for money, mother is parting with her beloved baby; when for money, a Prime Minister parts with probity; when for money, an IAS officer acts as a loyal dog of private industry, an IPS officer acts as a criminals’ conduit, a Commander carries out espionage for the enemy; when for money, a husband betrays his wife, a woman takes extra-conjugal sperm to become a surrogate mother, nobody can say for sure that Pradip is not parting with his innocence to become a cover.

To eliminate any such possible emergence of doubt the Police should come out with the details of criminal antecedents or blind-in-rage activities of Pradip. Whether or not they think it prudent would be known later.

But what the Police must immediately do is to honor the spirit of Section 39 of the Code of Criminal Procedure as discussed in these pages earlier and act against the IAS officer who has, sans any justifiable personal excuse, not informed the nearest Magistrate or the Police Officer of the commission of crime against life of Sethi in the privacy of his residence but on the other hand, has tampered with the cuprous delicti by removing the victim from the spot of crime.

Action against Ardhendu is a necessity on the further ground that as an IAS officer he cowed down the on-duty Medical Officers of the casualty wing of the Capital Hospital not to inform the Police of anything about Sethi. The casualty M.O. had admitted Sethi to medical care by registering him for treatment vide Outdoor Registration No. 9715 dated 21 May 2008. The Casualty Outdoor Register shows that Sethi was brought to the Hospital by Ardhendu Sarangi, IAS at 9.08 A.M. Sethi was drenched in blood, with grievous injury in the scalp and was profusely vomiting. It was urgent for admission in the indoor and simultaneously it was urgent to inform the Police. The Police has its outpost in the Capital Hospital adjoining the casualty outdoor. As the on-duty Doctor was making a requisition for the Police, Sarangi intervened and insisted that the Doctor should desist from calling the Police. He then asked the on-duty Doctors to desist from admitting Sethi for the indoor and further compelled them to desist from showing the seriousness of the injury on records. Accordingly, on the outdoor register a simple scalp injury was mentioned. Then before any chance transmission to the Police outpost takes place, he whisked out Sethi from the observation table and sped away with the man who was in coma condition. As records reveal, Sethi was admitted in the SCB medical College in a coma condition caused by severe head injury.

The Doctors on duty at the Casualty outdoor of the Capital Hospital who were cowed down and restrained by Ardhendu from discharging their legitimate duty to the severely injured Sethi at the relevant time were Dr. Snehalata Nath, Dr. Bhavani Shankar Bal and Dr. Saraswati Das.

How does the Police react to this?

And, how does the Chief Minister Navin Patnaik, who always says that law will take its own course, react to this evident reluctance of the Police to activate Laws against this heinous offense against administration of Law?

IF IAS OFFICER ARDHENDU SARANGI IS NOT THE ASSAULTER, PROSECUTE HIM IN THE SPIRIT OF SEC 39 OF THE CODE OF CRIMINAL PROCEDURE

Subhas Chandra Pattanayak

The Code of Criminal Procedure is the one instrument that the Law enforcement authorities cannot discard or disobey. It gives the authority required by the authorities to act against criminals.

At Section 39 (1), it makes mandatory for every citizen to inform the “nearest Magistrate or Police Officer” of occurrence of certain offenses. Let us see what it says.

It says, “Every person, aware of the commission of, or of the intention of any other person to commit, any offence punishable under any of the following sections of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) (as categorized under Clauses from i to xii) shall, in the absence of any personal excuse, the burden of proving which excuse shall lie upon the person so aware, forthwith give information to the nearest Magistrate or Police Officer of such commission or intention”.

Before going to the relevant Clause, it would be better to appreciate the emphasis given on this section. The word shall here is absolutely mandatory. It makes it compulsory for every individual to forthwith give information to the nearest Magistrate or Police Officer the moment he or she is aware of commission of a crime or any other person’s intention to commit a crime.

The crime comprising the mischief of this section is of various types indicated in the clauses from i to xii like offenses against the State coming under Clause (i); offenses against public tranquility as shown under Clause (ii) etc. The offenses affecting life are covered under Clause (v).

An offense affecting the life of Class IV public servant Ramesh Sethi has been committed under the residential privacy of IAS Officer Ardhendu Sarangi. Either Ardhendu himself or any of his family members who share residential privacy with him has committed the crime. This is so suspected, because he has not informed the authorities of any other person even though the crime is committed within the secured privacy of his residence.

It is he who took Sethi under coma from his residence to the Capital Hospital, Bhubaneswar and from there to the S.C.B. Medical College Hospital, Cuttack.

Had he no ulterior motive, he should have kept the records straight and facilitated operation of criminal justice system by informing forthwith the nearest Magistrate or the nearest Police Officer.

There is no Magistrate so far on records to have pressed the police to action in this case on Sarangi’s information. This means, Sarangi, though aware of the crime commissioned, has not forthwith informed the nearest Magistrate. On the other hand, the nearest police officer i.e. officer-in-charge of Capital Police Station is on records to have said that the only information received by police in the matter is from a man who does not reside in the residence of Sarangis.

Now when Police knows that Ardhendu was aware of the commission of the crime from the moment it occurred, specifically as it was he who took the victim in coma condition to the Hospital(s), why have they not initiated penal actions against him for having willfully concealed the fact from the lawful authorities?

Taking plea of personal excuse is also not permissible to Ardhendu.

The law is very clear and specific. It has stipulated that “the burden of proving” the justification of the “excuse” that prevented from forthwith informing the nearest Magistrate or the nearest Police Officer, “shall lie upon the person so aware”. When the word “shall” is mandatory, unavoidability of the “excuse” must have to be “proved” by the person concerned to escape punishment for having not informed the nearest Magistrate / Police officer “forthwith”.

And, where the justification of the “excuse” may be “proved”? Only in a court of Law competent under the Evidence Act.

So until the justification of an “excuse” is “proved” in a competent Court of Law, Police must continue to prosecute the person who despite being aware of commission of a crime has not informed the nearest Magistrate / Police officer.

In view of this legal stipulation, the Police is duty bound to prosecute Ardhendu Sarangi and all the members of his family individually and collectively for having stayed away from informing the nearest Magistrate or the nearest Police Officer of commissioning of the crime, in due deference to the spirit of Section 39 of the Cr.P.C.

On the other hand, the so called FIR from a persona nongrata that the Police has haphazardly entertained in this case, informs that he saw a man known as Pradip Nayak who works also in Ardhendu’s residence along with Sethi, was walking away from Ardhendu’s compound after assaulting the victim with a spade.

Now, if an iota to credence could be given to this information, Ardhendu would attract prosecution under section 201 of IPC as his action, in such circumstances would tantamount to “causing disappearance of evidence of offense” specifically as the body of class IV employees has stoutly denied working of any such man of their rank in Sarangi residence and further as that man has disappeared.

On another thread of Law, if Pradip was really a man, legally or extra-legally pressed on domestic duty by the Sarangis in their official residence, and he has perpetrated the murderous assault on Sethi, then giving credence to the aforesaid informant, Sarangi and his family individually and collectively attract prosecution under section 119 and section 120 of IPC.

Nobody commits a crime thus grave without any criminal intent.

If Pradip has committed the crime, according to the so-called eyewitness informant, he did it without exchanging any word with the victim and walked away from the compound without any obstruction. That means he had a concealed design to murder Sethi. By not informing the nearest Magistrate or the nearest Police Officer of commencement of the crime, Ardhendu has concealed the culprit, which by extension means, he has facilitated execution of concealed design of Pradip to murder Sethi. Therefore he is prosecutable under section 120 of IPC that says if the offense is committed, the facilitator “shall be punished with imprisonment of the description provided for the offense and with such fine as is provided for”.

The IPC under section 119 has provided specific punishment for “whosoever being a public servant intending to facilitate knowing it to be likely that he will thereby facilitate the commission of an offense which it is his duty bas such public servant to prevent, voluntarily conceals by any act or illegal omission, the existence of a design to commit such offense ………..shall, if the offense be committed, be punished with imprisonment of any description provided for the offense for a term which may extend to one-half of the longest term of such imprisonment, or with such fine as is provided for that offense, or with both”.

Instead of playing hoodwinking tricks, Chief Minister Navin Patnaik should ask the Police to Act according to Acts in force, a few threads of which are discussed above.

And, instead of showing us stars on the day sky, Police should assure us that it understands the spirit of the Code of Criminal Procedure and has the aptitude to act according to the Code even if thereby it is to act against powerful IAS officers.

Hoodlumism of IAS officers has shown its ugly face many a times in Orissa even to the extent of posing open affront to authority of the Assembly. This time the aggrieved persons are neither the MLAs nor self-centric persons who benefit by hobnobbing with those people in power. This time it is a very poor man who having served the State as an employee in the lowest cadre for more than 15 years has not been regularized in service but on the other hand, pressed to do duties in the residence of couple in IAS has been used in menial works and lastly been brutally assaulted to the extent of hospitalization under coma that necessitated a brain-repair through neurosurgery without his knowledge and without knowing what dreaded damage that would throw him into. In a remarkable solidarity show, the Class IV employees of the State at Bhubaneswar have warned the Chief Minister that they will not tolerate any attempt to hush up the offense.

Therefore it is better for the Chief Minister to ensure that the Police under his control acts according to the Code of Criminal Procedure and refrain from killing the spirit of Section 39 thereof by prosecuting Sarangi under the sections discussed supra if not under 307 of IPC.