MARCH 5 EXPOSES A PHENOMENON AND POSES A FEW QUESTIONS

Subhas Chandra Pattanayak

March 5 has again shown that Orissa Chief Minister Navin Patnaik may be strong in the Assembly, but politically he is quite weak.

A strong man is known by his own name; but Navin is known by his father’s name. It is curious that his colleagues and acolytes are identifying themselves not as followers of Navin, but as followers of Biju, his father. March 5 has made it clear.

Navin has become the CM not by virtue of any sacrifice he has made for Orissa, but by shrewd exploitation of posthumous pardon granted to his father by the people of Orissa.

As shown in these pages on basis of facts, Biju was a shrewd man who on grabbing power was drowning Orissa in corruption so deeply that people of the State were refusing him mandate for several subsequent terms. This is why he was forced to stay out of Orissa administration for long 27 years from October 1963 to March 1090 and after end of the 2nd term in March 1995, he was again refused mandate leading to his death sans power in 1997.

A pack of political black-sheep who were with Biju Patnaik, after his demise, as magnanimous people of Orissa granting him posthumous pardon a wave of sympathy for his bereaved family surged, contrived a new platform that they named after Biju and thus came Biju Janata Dal into existence, which eventually transformed the sympathy wave into ballots by using Navin as the mask and occupied power under the cover of coalition politics that discredited politicians of every hue had by then spread over India.

That the founders of BJD were practitioners of corruption is proved by the very fact that most of them have been simply dismissed from the party by Navin on charges of corruption. And such dismissal of colleagues was so abrupt and autocratic that the media has come to call him as the supremo of BJD.

But despite being the supremo of a party that has occupied Orissa and has the brutal strength in the stadium of number game in applied politics, he is politically weak. Otherwise, he should have by this time come out of the cocoon of his father’s name and shown that he has gained strength to stay in leadership on his own merit.

March 5 has shown that he has the feeling that if his father’s name is not spread it would be impossible for him to stay in power.

Ministers and MPs, MLAs and functionaries were to utter like pet parrots the set words that Biju’s dreams to come true needs Navin on the steering. Projects funded by state exchequer were named after Biju, by whose name BJD is in power. This was nothing but misuse of public funds for political gain of the ruling party. Official power was misused to commission Biju statue(s) in public places. The public places belonging also to people who opposed Biju when he was alive is nothing but mafianisation of administration. Offices were closed and officers were forced to organize marathons and official events in memory of Biju. Announcements were made to pump more funds from the public exchequer into projects named after Biju and administration was forced to whisk in Panchayat functionaries from all parts of Orissa irrespective of party affiliation in the name of Panchayatiraj day for their brainwashing to accept the idea that they are there because of Biju’s contribution to Panchayatiraj, even though in reality, when Biju was in first term of office, Panchayats were made so corrupt that the three-tire system born out of recommendations of Kairon Committee, in which Biju was an accidental member, had to be given a premature death and in the last term of his office, Panchayats were superseded with elections thereto postponed time and again.

How long this farce should continue? How long the imprudent act of naming and funding of official projects and functions in the name of Biju by the government run by his son heading a party run under his name is tolerated? How far misuse of the State Exchequer by a Chief Minister for his personal political gain should be allowed to stay beyond scrutiny? Should it not be proper for patriots to take stock of damage done by this to democracy?

WHY IS NAVIN PATNAIK SHYING AT CBI?


Subhas Chandra Pattanayak

Former secretary of National Union of Journalists, India, Sri Balbir Punj, who presently represents Orissa in the Rajyasabha, has demanded an inquiry by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) into the massive mining scam perpetrated and going on in Orissa under the reign of Navin Patnaik.

Punj, in his spot study of the scam in Keonjhar district, had led a team of BJP leaders that comprised also his colleague in Parliament, Sri Chandan Mitra, who like him is a Journalist turned politician with right wing attire.

The team made a spot estimation of loot of ores at Kashia, Chormaldar, Loidapada and Regudi where ESSEL, OMC and RBTL are nefariously involved and came out with facts too revealing to be refuted.

Not the Vigilance police that works under Navin Patnaik, but the CBI that runs not under Navin Patnaik should be asked to investigate so that the truth of loot may not be stopped from coming out, declared the BJP leaders.

But to Navin Patnaik, this is nothing but a political notoriety resorted to by BJP.

Punj and Mitra have gone to the spot and have made the allegation on the basis of what they have seen on the spot. Chief Minister Navin Patnaik has never visited the spot so far.

He obviously uses the State Vigilance in matter of the loot. The loot is so very discernible that the Vigilance Police is not able to say that there is no loot.

Now that admittedly there is loot, Navin should confess that in his regime the loot has occurred. But he has not done it so far.

As time passes, he looks murkier.

If he is to depend upon hearsay about the occurrence and / or non-occurrence of the loot, why should he not depend upon the CBI than the State Vigilance to know what really has happened?

The matter is so critical but delicate, even if the State Vigilance Police would act honestly and bring out details of the loot and the looters, people would sure look at that askance.

Therefore it is true that the Chief Minister by not accepting the demands for the inquiry by CBI, is dragging the State Vigilance to a state of forfeiture of its credibility.

Will the CM amend himself and entrust the investigation to CBI as demanded by Punj and Mitra?

PM MUST NOT ACT MMS; SO NAVIN MUST RESOLUTELY PROCEED

Subhas Chandra Pattanyak

The Prime Minister of India is not expected to act as Dr. Man Mohan Singh. But Dr. Man Mohan Singh is refusing to act as the Prime Minister. This is the severest danger that democracy of India has been subjected to in this regime.

It is true, Dr. Singh belongs to the Congress party and heads a Congress led Government. But he has not been able as yet to convince us that he adheres to the principle that a man after becoming the PM of a multi-party-democracy like India should never act as a leader only of his party, but should rise above party timidity and act as the leader of the country.

Orissa run by a non-Congress Government has the bitterest experience of his partiality.

The National Institute of Science, earmarked for establishment in Orissa as per UGC framework, was, through clumsy conspiracy cooked up by him, changed to IISER and shifted to Kolkatta to suite his allies in West Bengal during the phase of his dependence on the Communists for survival in power. Had the Oriya intellectuals not registered their protests against the foul play and had the Oriya netizens not refused to remain silent, as several reports in these pages would show, the National Institute of Science Education and Research (NISER) could never have come to Orissa.

We had exposed in these pages the political prejudices of Dr. Singh against Orissa when his Government had played the tricks in tackling the 2008 devastative deluge that had equally affected Orissa and Bihar. When Bihar, the province of the then Congress ally Lalu Prasad Jadav was immediately visited by Dr. Singh and supported with central aid amounting a thousand crores of Rupees, Orissa was ignored and only when criticism from the global community embarrassed his government, light feathers were asked to make a lackluster review of the flood of Orissa after the deluge was receded and a sum of only Rs. 98 crores was advanced as central assistance against an announced amount of Rs.500 crores. But, out of this 98 crores assistance, Singh’s government, after Orissa rejected the Congress in the general elections, insisted upon refund of 80 crores!

Commenting upon the scenario on July 12, 2009, we had mentioned,

“Orissa was discriminated against last year by Man Mohan Singh Government in the matter of central assistance to tackle the catastrophic damages wrecked by rivers in full spate. Even as Orissa damage was no less severe than that in Bihar, Prime Minister Man Mohan Singh and UPA Chief Sonia, then dependant on Lalu Pr. Jadav of Bihar for survival of their Government, rushed there and announced an instant assistance of Rs.1000 crores over and above the flood of funds Lalu was pumping from the Railways into that State as flood assistance. The Center deliberately delayed in having a survey of the spate in Orissa and when, much after the deluge had receded, the Union Home Minister made a reluctant visit to evade world criticism for negligence to Orissa on political grounds, he had announced central assistance worth only Rs. 500 crores in a face-saving attempt. But that the Union Minister’s announcement was a mere joke was unveiled as in reality the Union granted only Rs.98 crores.

It is shocking and surprising that out of this amount, the Union Government now wants refund of Rs.80 crores when on records in the Loksabha it has stated not to withdraw any fund from Bihar.

Orissa is undoubtedly discriminated against in absence of a legal guideline.”

It is a shame for our democracy that Dr. Singh’s Government has not yet released the promised amount of Rs.500 crores even as it has still been demanding refund of Rs.80 crores from the meager amount of Rs.98 crores remitted by NCCF. On the other hand, responding to recent flood in Andhra Pradesh and Karnatak, Singh has granted Rs.1000 crores each to these two States.

We do never want to say that these two States do not deserve more than what the central government has granted. But we certainly want to say, that Orissa should be treated with equal devotion.

Chief minister Navin Patnaik in his latest memorandum to Government of India has demanded that Rs 2687 crores be immediately sanctioned for resurrection of the State devastated by flood, one after one, since 2006.

This is a justified demand.

Orissa’s suffering is gradually increasing because of her inability to perfectly repair the damaged embankments and infrastructures due to rabid non-cooperation of the Central government. Had the announced assistance been released in reality, the State might have made solid reconstructions at specific points, which, in a way, might have stymied further decays. But by mischievously withholding the assured assistance, Singh’s government has played havoc with Orissa.

People of Orissa have refused to be hoodwinked by the agents of the American nuclear business and so, they have rejected the candidates of Singh’s party and the Congress has conceded defeat in Orissa.

With manipulators of EVMs available both to Navin and Singh, BJD victory over Congress is sure proof of people’s rejection to Congress.

This is democracy.

Instead of appreciating democracy, Singh has been playing the nasty game of discrimination against Orissa.

This nasty game shall have to be stopped. Dr. Man Mohan Singh must be made to know that he has the legitimacy to act as the Prime Minister. But the Prime Minister must be made to know that in a democracy like ours, he has no legitimacy to act as Dr. Man Mohan Singh.

On this premise, we the people of Orissa wholeheartedly appreciate Navin Patnaik’s role as our Chief Minister in protesting against discrimination and in pressing for flood related assistance that is Orissa’s due with retrospective effect as an equal partner in Indian Union.

We call upon Navin to resolutely proceed for complete stoppage of discrimination of one State against another by the political animals in power at the center.

In our comment cited supra we have stressed upon the need of formulation of a national guideline to regulate central assistance in case of natural calamities. We reiterate that this is the only way to stop the foul play. Hence, Navin should proceed for formulation of such a guideline in order to obliterate every possible scope of discrimination in future too.

If he feels, let him call for a mass movement against the Central discrimination and we are sure, in greater interest of Indian democracy, people of Orissa, except the shameless slaves of Sonia Gandhi, will gladly join the movement.

If he fails to develop such a just movement, it will be because of his lack of sincerity, not because of reluctance of the general public.

So, instead of stopping at the posting of his memorandum, he should, on principle, resolutely proceed to force Dr. Singh’s Government to stop discriminating against Orissa.

HIS WRIT DOES NOT RUN IN THE STATE, SAYS THE PRESS TO CHIEF MINISTER NAVIN PATNAIK

Subhas Chandra Pattanayak

Who runs the State? You, the Chief Minister? Or the bureaucrats or the police or mafias? This was the question today from the Press to Navin Patnaik, in a protest congregation before the Raj Bhawan.

The Chief Minister had promised a media delegation that had met with him on September 22 that an RDC-level probe will be ordered into arrest of Journalist Laxman Choudhury, which seemingly was an act of vengeance on the part of corrupt police officials posted in Gajapati district who, when their link with Ganja underworld and human trafficking hub was unearthed, tried to terrorize him into silence.

He had assured that the journalist would be relieved from being harassed under mindless police action. But nothing tangible has taken shape as yet.

The scribes at Bhubaneswar feel that the Gajapati police are desperate to save their skin. They have been caught red-handed while playing foul. They have no evidence against Choudhury except a packet of leaflets allegedly sent to him by the Maoists.

On Friday, 9th of October 2009, a delegation of working journalists had shown the CM a similar packet addressed to a Bhubaneswar-based journalist that contained Maoist leaflets. It was the postal department, which delivered the packet! When in Choudhury’s case, the poor bus conductor who acted as the ‘courier’ has been arrested and is in jail, no action has been initiated against the city-based journalist or the courier, the postal department of the Govt of India !!!

It is not impossible that the packet was planted to implicate Choudhury in criminal cases under severe charges like sedition.

Laxman Choudhury had invited trouble for himself. He had the courage to inform the SP and the Collector of the district about the ganja mafia, which enjoyed a free run in Gajapati by bribing the police. He also wrote about the complicity of the local police in cases of trafficking in women.

That is why he incurred the wrath of the police, apprehends senior journalist Sampad Mohapatra.

To the scribes, the chief minister’s writ does not run in the state. The police officers have openly defied his instructions to drop the ‘ridiculous’ charges against Choudhury and that they manage to do without any sense of fear.

Who are the people resisting the CM’s decision to drop the atrocious charges against the journalist, especially when the police have clearly failed to stitch together any credible evidence of his so-called Maoist links?

IS IT NOT PROPER FOR THE SUPREME COURT TO EXTEND U.P. ORDERS TO ORISSA?

Subhas Chandra Pattanayak

Taking the cue from the Supreme Court of India stance against statue setting spree of UP Chief Minister Mayavati, the High Court of Orissa or the SC itself should take steps to dismantle deification of Biju Patnaik that his son Navin, being in advantage as the State CM, has been relentlessly doing at the cost of the State Exchequer.

In the Apex Court yardstick applied in Mayavati’s case, commissioning of Biju’s statues in public places and naming of official institutes and projects in Biju’s name cannot be anything but Navin’s self and family glorification willfully crafted for political gain.

It is better for the Apex Court to appreciate that Navin Patnaik is heading a government run by a regional political party called Biju Janata Dal and therefore naming of official institutes and welfare projects after him like the Biju Patnaik University of Technology or Biju KBK Yojana, Biju Kandhamal Yojana, Biju Gajapati Yojana, Biju Gram Jyoti Yojana etc by forcing the State exchequer to cough up funds for the same cannot but be political misuse of the taxpayers’ money.

The Supreme Court verdicts / directives are accepted as laws enforceable everywhere in India. So the SC directives issued in Mayavati context are also enforceable in Orissa.

Is it not proper for the Supreme Court to stop derailment of democracy in Orissa that the incumbent CM has been doing by forcing the State Exchequer to bear the cost of glorification of his father after death though, in fact, when alive, he was refused by the majority of Orissa a fresh mandate?

Is it not proper for the Supreme Court to see that no official institution and / or project funded by the State Exchequer should be named after a man in whose name a ruling syndicate has formed a political party as thereby the beneficiaries of the government program may be misled by the nomencletural mischief into electoral traps laid by the said ruling syndicate in its own nefarious interest?

Is it not proper for the Supreme Court to appreciate that christening official institutes and programs in Orissa by the name of Biju by his son Navin is more dangerous to democracy than setting up of statues of Kansiram or herself by Mayavati in UP; because, in Orissa, the ruling party is named after Biju and hence naming of welfare projects after him would sure lead the gullible public to mistake them as contributions of the ruling party or more specifically of Biju’s son?

Is it therefore not proper for the Supreme Court to extend its UP order / directives to whole of India and specifically to Orissa and to dismantle deification of Biju Patnaik by his vested interest son Navin, which he has been doing all these days by misuse of the State Exchequer?

In various cases like the ‘unauthorized occupation of government quarters in different provinces’, the Supreme Court has extended its orders, pronounced in individual state matters, to whole of India, keeping in mind the necessity of administrative fairplay and discipline. So, it would be proper for the Supreme Court to extend its UP order to Orissa on the grounds noted supra.

ORISSA IN SEVERE PREDICAMENT: ARCELOR MITTAL BLACKMAILS HER CM TO RENDER THE FARMERS INSTANTLY LANDLESS

Subhas Chandra Pattanayak

Orissa is a land of farmers. Proud farmers that are self-employed communities of autonomous social forces for whom, in Ashoka’s confession in the 2nd Kalinga Rock Edict, Orissa had remained “Abijita” (Unbeatable) and as observed by the area Magistrate of the British regime, in the matter of India’s first war of independence called the Paik Vidroh of Orissa, she and her people were such that they were beyond being subdued either by the British Military or by the Police. (Magistrate W.Forrester, Khurda to Commissioner Robert Ker, at Para 18 of his Report Dated 9.9.1818).

All the fellows considered Orissa’s top level bureaucrats or technocrats, professionals or politicians, residential or non-residential, who assert or are viewed as Oriya elites, come either from the community of farmers or from the strata that have prospered by cheating the farmers in the name of religion or under the cover of trade in crops or crop connected commodities or crop loan. Hence whosoever has ascended to upper echelons in Orissa, owes his or her elite status only to the farmers of Orissa.

Chief Minister Navin Patnaik has been injuring these proud farmers by forcing them to part with their soil so that industrialists would rule the roost.

Farmers of Orissa are self-employed. They supplement each other in clusters of self-employed autonomous social forces. Navin’s POSCO love threatens them with displacement and consequential destruction of their self–dependence that eventually would force them to live as servants for survival in an environment where labour department is so pro-management that availability of service with fair pay is impossible.

When the farmers of Orissa are reluctant to part with their lands, POSCO, hand-in-glove with the miscreants in power, has cultivated dogs in the kennels of the elite that are not only barking at those farmers but also have started pouncing upon their leaders.

This is the scenario everywhere in Orissa.

When dogs of the industries fail to frighten the farmers, two specific strategies are adopted.

The Government arbitrarily allots thousands of Acres of land reserved by the ancestors for use of future generations of the Oriyas to industries basically belonging to non-Oriyas, thereby bestowing upon them the unholy rights they need to operate from the soil of Orissa against the people of Orissa. Like scheming prostitutes side with shrewd pimps, media bigwigs stand with the ad-givers and pleasure-providers and use their misguiding might to highlight how land allocation to these industries would usher in the bright future for people of Orissa when its farmers know that their future would be doomed forever under shifting of administrative priority from agriculture to industry.

When grabbing of the land belonging to future generation of Oriyas fails to fully satisfy their avarice, they use the second strategy.

They start blackmailing Navin Patnaik, whose spree of signing of MOUs has, they know, kept his sail afloat in Orissa’s turbulent political seas. They start threatening to nullify the MOUs and to roll back their proposed ventures if the several thousand of Acres of consolidated land they want is not readily handed over to them. POSCO had played the tricks a few weeks ago and now has Arcelor Mittal.

Arcelor Mittal’s unilateral declaration to roll back his proposed steel industry from Orissa if obstacles to land acquisition in its favour are not stilled by Navin Government is being read as blackmail used by Mittal against Navin to force him to immediately render Orissa farmers landless by force.

Mittal has not gained over Orissa government to go away the way he asserts. It is not for serving the people of Orissa but for exploiting them for his own profit, Mittal has been trying to grab land in Orissa.

The Orissa Secretary in the Department of Mines had in October 2007 informed the Central Government that Arcelor Mittal “have made a formal application for allocation of land in Keonjhar district and the State Government is looking into the matter”. But three months prior to that, in July 2007, the Company’s Chairman L.N.Mittal, had declared at New Delhi that they “have already placed an order of $50 million to purchase equipment for the two steel units (one each in Orissa and Jharkhand of 12 MT capacity)”. This makes it clear that even before initiation of steps for acquisition of lands, Mittal was so very sure of getting ownership thereof that he had invested so massive money “to purchase equipments”. In other words, Mittal had decided to grab the Orissa land and had made Navin Patnaik support his design. This is a nefarious mischief in play against the people of Orissa.

The proud farmers of Orissa, by obstructing transfer of their beloved land to Mittal, have frustrated the evil design so far. Hence Mittal’s new drama of declaring a roll back can be termed as deliberate design to provide Navin with new arsenals to proceed swiftly against farmers that are opposing to be rendered landless.

When the State Government is not for the people of the State but for the land grabbers from outside the State, the contradiction seems too sharp for the people to tolerate.

Orissa is really in a severe predicament.

SEX RACKET HUB USES BIJU PATNAIK AS ITS BRAND NAME

Subhas Chandra Pattanayak

An organization in non-Government sector, styled as Basanti Trust with its headquarters under Chandrasekharpur P.S. of Bhubaneswar, has attracted public wrath as, after rescue of 24 young girls by the Police from its premises,the locals came to know that the girls were allegedly stationed there for sex exploitation. It eventually transpired that the Trust’s sex racket hub has been using the name of Biju Patnaik as its brand name.

Biju Patnaik in his lifetime was known for many facets including such ugly ones that the peoples of Orissa were getting provoked to oust him from power time and again, the last instance being, when he died, he was not in power as voters had refused to give him a fresh mandate. In his long but checkered career in politics he had been able to occupy the Chief Minister post only twice and was conspicuous in Orissa politics by being rejected at least for two consecutive terms after being placed in power for one term. Even when in power, he was facing public wrath for his rampant misrule, which is evidenced from the fact that he had to resign in the middle of his first term as CM at the summit of a massive and acrimonious strike by the students and the youth against his naked practice of corruption and in his second term, which was his last term as CM, his misrule was so unbearable that his own staff in the secretariat had manhandled him. There is elaborate and exclusive exposure of this facet in these pages and in saubhasya.com for perusal of those who cannot reach my book Simhavalokanare Biju Patnaik, published by Bharata Bharati, Cuttack and the e-book of the same title being marketed by the news syndicate.

But I must say, use of his name as brand name of a suspected sex racket hub is something that had not happened so far. To me, it is an obnoxious misuse of the name of a man to whom there are a lot of peoples in Orissa who pay posthumous respect.

Every human being has his dark side and Biju babu was a human being. So he had a dark side too. But in his bright side, he was seen as a brave and magnanimous man. For this bright side, which was unique, even the people that were opposing him politically, never hesitate to remember Biju Patnaik with love.

It is therefore unthinkable that a man, suspected to have been operating a sex racket, had been enjoying official patronage in Navin Patnaik’s regime, so far, in running the hub named as “Biju Patnaik Destitute Home”.

But for this posthumous misuse of his name, I will hold his son Navin Patnaik squarely responsible. The junior Patnaik knows that he captured power in Orissa by posthumous use of Biju as his political launching pad and, despite the misrule he has given, he has been able to hoodwink the peoples of Orissa till date only by posthumous political use of his father’s name. So, in order to stay in power he has tried to add arbitrarily Biju’s name to almost all the ventures that under his Chief Ministership the State Exchequer is forced to fund.

This has become such a mania that every dishonest person, who tries to get government grants in any form, is, as a stratagem, using Biju’s name as his / her concern’s brand name.

No wonder, a reported sex racketeer has named his hub after him.