Former Minister shows how corruption is rewarded in Judiciary

Subhas Chandra Pattanayak

Former Cabinet Minister of Orissa Sri Bhagavat Prasad Mohanty has published instances of how corruption is rewarded in Judiciary. It deserves serious attention, specifically as, Sri Mohanty is a freedom fighter and a renowned lawyer.

He has been contributing a biographical column captioned MO HAJILA DINARA KATHA to an Oriya daily titled Orissa Express. In its edition of October 25, he has given these accounts.

Without mentioning the name of a corrupt Judge, he has discussed a Judge whose upward journey to the position of the Chief Justice of Orissa High Court had begun from a lower class magistrate in Kendrapada, despite location of his corrupt practices. The man is so corrupt that even after retiring as Chief Justice of Orissa High Court, he had managed to grab the Judge-cum-Chairman post of the State Administrative Tribunal till finally fleeing away from the position due to lawyers’ strike.

Mohanty writes, he was shocked to see that his client – a notorious trader of illicit liquor, who would be punished despite his pleading, he was sure – got acquittal in all the seven irrefutable cases the State Excise Police had lodged against him. The Court was held by a Judicial Magistrate appointed for adjudication of narcotic cases in Kendrapada. Before agreeing to act his advocate, Mohanty had made it clear to the accused, that, the excise cases were so strong that, it was impossible to fetch for him any acquittal. He had responded with the words that he was interested only in being represented by a lawyer of repute. That’s all; because, then he shall not bother about the outcome.

And when the cases were answered with acquittal, it was Mohanty, despite being his lawyer, was really shocked. How could he managed to get acquitted, he asked the offender. “By bribing the Magistrate”, was the quick reply.

Mohanty got thrashed by his conscience. He grasped that, the acquittal was pre-decided. Lest the public suspect the Magistrate, a reputed lawyer was to be appointed by the offender.

Thus, at the call of his conscience, Mohanty preferred a confidential letter to the District Judge describing the case and its bribe-induced outcome in details. After 7 days of receiving this letter, the District Judge deputed the Additional District Judge to get first-hand details. Mohanty not only conformed his confidential communication, but also called the acquitted person, who clearly told of the bribe given to the Magistrate to purchase the judgment, even narrating how much money he had paid for which case. The Magistrate was transferred on report of the ADJ.

Mohanty has said that the same Magistrate was promoted to the post of District Judge and was eventually promoted to the bench of the High Court and retired as Chief Justice of Orissa.

Matter did not end there. After retirement from the Chief Justice post, the same person got reappointed as the Chairman of the State Administrative Tribunal, which is the same as the High Court for government servants.

According to Mohanty, in this position also he was selling verdicts against payola. He ultimately fled away from the Tribunal after members of the Bar raised a spectacular and aggressive strike against rampant corruption in SAT.

Non-Oriya Health Secretary Sabotages the Minister: CM Ought to Know, His Party is spreading AIDS

Subhas Chandra Pattanayak

When on July 7, in presence of Panchayati Raj and Law Minister Mr. Arun Kumar Sahoo and Food Supplies and Consumer Welfare, Employment, Technical Education and Training Minister Mr. Sanjay Kumar Das Burma, the Minister of Health and Family Welfare, Information and Public Relations Mr. Atanu Sabyasachi Nayak told me on his own accord, in his Secretariat chamber, that, the issue I had raised has been ordered to be implemented immediately, I was very happy and was sure, Orissa shall be saved from a great disaster.

But I had no idea that his Secretary – a non-Oriya IAS officer – would sabotage him and continue infecting people of Orissa with AIDS through unsafe blood supplied by Red Cross Blood Banks without proper screening.

I had stumbled upon a case of AIDS caused to a 3 year old boy in 2012.

He was a victim of blood transfusion on operation table.

The blood he was given was infected with HIV.

He was a native of a village of Baramba adjoining my birthplace Tigiria. His father had given me the details of how the misfortune engulfed him and had requested me to take such steps that no child should be such a victim of medial mismanagement. His sobs and tears are still alive in my heart.

I investigated into it and found that in 2011 the Orissa High Court, on awarding a cash punishment to the State to the tune of Rs.3 lakhs, had directed that the Orissa Government must immediately adopt NAT method of blood screening as the prevailing method of ELISA was not competent enough to detect HIV in its “window Period”. The Government was sleeping over it.

I exposed the malady repeatedly with updated input. It attracted attention of Sri Prasad Harichandan, then the Opposition Chief Whip, who moved an adjournment motion on the topic. On September 1, 2012, the then health Minister Dr. Damodar Raut answered the motion with an emphatic YES to the NAT method and announced to adopt the method in all Blood Banks “in phased manner”, which would start with four major Blood Banks serving the 3 Government Medical Colleges and the Capital Hospital.

He could not see his announcement implemented because the health secretary and a few mandarins were interested in continuance of the ELISA method.

I continued to expose the apathy of administration in this particular matter, as a big population of transfusion dependent patients were sure to be affected by the dreaded virus. Taking the cue, almost all newspapers of Orissa used their spaces time and again in this mission; but the mandarins did not buzz.

After election 2014, the portfolio of Health came to the hands of the young dynamic Minister Atanu Sabyasach Nayak.

I raised the issue before him, cries of the unfortunate man of Baramba still vibrating in my heart.

He took two days to study the matter and sent the following “Note” (No.23, Dt.19.9.2014) to the Secretary:

“This is regarding implementation of NAT screening method for blood in four centres catering to 6 major blood banks of the State.

The Hon’ble High Court in 2011 on one PIL case filed before it had passed an order for earliest implementation of NAT. The then Hon’ble Minister, Health and F.W., Odisha had assured on the floor of the House for implementation of NAT in phased manner while answering an adjournment motion in the subject on 01,09,2012. A Technical Committee constituted by the Government had visited two States i.e. Karnatak and Uttarpradesh and inspected various centres where NAT was implemented and had given their report.

I am told, the SBTC was directed to go ahead for implementation of the project. The major procedure involving Financial and Technical formalities are also over. The Technical Expert Committee has also given its views on the Request of Proposal received.

It is a matter of concern, why the important decision to implement the direction of Hon’ble High Court has not been operationalized till date.

A detail report in this regard is to be called for at the earliest. A meeting in this regard may also be convened at your level as early as possible to expedite the process.
Sd.
A.S.Nayak,16.9.14

One year has passed away since then. Implementation is hanging under many pretenses.

This is a classic instance of how incompetent or ill-motivated mandarins in the Secretariat have been playing tricks upon the political Government.

It is an instance of how a non-Oriya IAS officer has continuously kept the Minister in dark, while pushing at least two Oriyas into AIDS everyday by forcing unsafe blood upon them.

Yesterday, the Chief Minister addressed a workshop of his party in matter of Jivan Sindhu, a project of BJD to make the party appear concerned for the people. It transpired from his speech that since commencement of this project six months ago, its collection of blood has reached 37,232 units.

Medico-scientific surveys have established, and the High Level Technical Committee held under the chairmanship of the Health Secretary on 17.10.2014 had held that, “NAT yield (ELISA Negative & NAT positives) is around 500: 1” which means, NAT method detects one case in every 500 units as HIV positive and ELISA detects none.

All the blood units in Orissa are being screened in ELISA method. This prompts us to suspect that out of the 37,232 units of blood collected and supplied by BJD during this six months under the banner of Jivan Sindhu under guidance of the Chief Minister, AIDS causing viruses have been pumped into at least 76 unsuspecting patients.

This is a very serious situation.

Jivan Sindhu is a political program of the ruling party aimed at appearing pro-people as it is increasingly being viewed as a server of avaricious industries at the cost of indigenous population. The CM wants that, before the next election, its blood collection should exceed 5 lakh units.Vote bank politics can go to any extent.

If NAT is not immediately implemented, the said 5 lakh units would be forcing at least 1,000 Oriyas into AIDS by way of blood transfusion.

Health Minister Atanu babu should immediately wake up as the concerned Minister and foil the foul game of the non-Oriya IAS officer, who, as Commissioner-cum-Secretary has been presiding over the horrific delay in implementation of the already approved program, is playing; or if he is unable to administer his Secretary, the attention of this Chief Minister should immediately be drawn into this malicious conduct of the mandarins.

Human life is more precious than the lady IAS officer, whose negligence and incompetency is pushing unsuspecting Oriya patients into the pernicious grip of HIV.

Any further delay must not be allowed.

Sankaracharya had no Business in Snana Yatra

Subhas Chandra Pattanayak

With the help of caste-supremacists in administration, Sankaracharya and his troop stepped on the bath podium of SriJagannatha on Snana Yatra. But except posing for the TV cameras, he had no business to perform in the podium.

When the State is run by a chief minister who does not know the history of her social evolution and of how and why Buddha became Jagannatha, administration is bound to bow down to religious chauvinism; and that happened.
Adi Sankara had established Gobardhana Matha with the sole villainous purpose to train the Brahmins how to vitiate the Bouddha-Vajrayanic worship of Jagannatha with Brahminic worship system. For this, the Brahmins were being trained in the Gobarddhana Matha by Sankaracharya.

Through impudence the Brahmins were trying to impose the Vedic system of worship in Sri Jagannatha temple. To confuse the people scriptures were created to say that SriJagannatha’s worship should be performed not only in the method of Bouddha Tantra, but also by using Vedic Mantras. Verses, such as “Amnayagamavedaya Shuddha Buddhaye Te Namah” were used to justify transgression of Vedic system into the Buddhist system of Jagannatha.

As Adi Sankara was stressing upon Govinda, with the help of the patron kings of Brhminism like Purusottama Dev, attempts were made to transform Jagannatha to Gopal Krushna and, to people of Orissa to whom Jagannatha was Kali (Nilardrou SriJagannatha Sakshat Dekshina Kalika), Sanskrit verses were created to convince the people that Dakshina Kalika is non but Krushna; such as Kalou Kali Kalou Krushna Kalou Gopala Kalika (In Kaliyuga, the redeemer is Kali who is also Krushna and Gopal who is Krushna is none but Kali) and against such shrewdly created confusion, VijaMantra (preamble of worship) with which Jagannatha was to be invoked was made pregnant with Brahminic mischief such as “Om Gopijana Ballavaya Namah” and when people sternly protested, it was amended to “Om Klim Krushnaya Govindaya Gopijana Ballavaya Namah” thereby showing the people that “Klim” representing Kali is also Krushna, Govinda, Gopijana ballava” whom worship was being offered.

Such acts of impudence and tricks were being taught to the Brahmins in the Gobarddhana Matha of Sankaracharya.

People had revolted against this and partially succeeded as a result of which the Sankaracharya’s role as trainer of the Brahmins had been done away with.

Under consistent protest of the people of Orissa, Sankaracharya had been divested of whatever role he was having in worship of Jagannatha.

We gather it Prof. K. C. Mishra, who in his famous book Cult Of Jagannatha has noted,

“The priests of Jaganntha temple learn the art of ritualistic worship from this Matha (Sankaracharya Matha). That is, this Matha is responsible for the education and training of the priests in respect of worship to the deities. After obtaining sufficient training at this Matha certificates are issued to the priests. They are then, by an order of the king, entitled to enter into the priesthood. The system is no longer in vogue in the temple” (Cult of Jagannatha, Firma: K. L. Mukhopadhyay, Calcutta, 1971, p. 125)

Thus, Sankaracharya has no role in Jagannatha temple. Nowhere in the Satwalipi (The Deed of Right), has he been allotted with any service in the Jagannatha temple. The High Court verdict he has been citing to transgress into Jagannatha system has no relevance to his self-proclaimed authority on Jagannatha.

The judgment has not gone into social history of Orissa that has brilliantly recorded the deracination of the statues of Adi Sankara and his first chela Sankara from the Ratnasinghasana of Jagannatha by the people of Orissa in the regime of Divya Singha Dev in late 1700s. The judges have not reflected in their verdict any view on whether or not SriJagannatha is Buddha and whether or not Buddhism and Hinduism are different. The said Judgement is an instance of non-application of mind to the real issue of whether or not Sankaracharya has a specific role in affairs of Jagannatha that would entitle him to the privilege he has been claiming. The said Judgment is a judicial intervention in religious matters that supported Vedic religion oblivious of how would it affect the Bouddha Tantric / Savara Tantric heritage of Jagannatha.

However, it is seen by all, that, despite invitation generated by the caste supremacists, the Jagannatha system has not allowed Sankaracharya to perform any service on the Snana Mandap yesterday except he and his troop posing for the TV cameras to show how impudence become a religious achievement by the standard of Sankaracharya.

In allowing him to step on to the Snana Mandap with religious egoistic fanfare, the temple administration has cooperated with his impudence, to the detriment of the uniqueness of Buddha, the son of the soil of Orissa, being worshiped as Jagannatha.

Ramesh Pattnaik: Martyr in the battle against exploitation in Samaja

Subhas Chandra Pattanayak

As has already been shown, the history of Samaja under Servants of the People Society (SoPS) is a history of treachery, forgery and scourgery.

This write-up will narrate how a low paid employee of Samaja namely Ramesh Chandra Pattnaik breathed his last in a long fight for justice on the battle field of Law that spanned from a labor office at Cuttack to the Supreme Court at New Delhi, as his mighty employer, after having illegally dismissed him, had misused media power to obstruct adjudication of his dispute under the Industrial Disputes Act and yet again had foiled the relief granted to him by the lowest Civil Court, Cuttack by using the forum of the High Court of Orissa.

If anything, he is a martyr amongst the workers in the battle for justice in the ramparts of Law.

Anti-worker I.D.Act

bijubabu watchig scpTwo and half decades ago, I had set fire to Industrial Disputes Act in front of the Orissa Legislative Assembly when it was in session, to shock-awake the State Government to the need of reference of a case of dismissal of a Journalist (Vevekanand Dash) to the Industrial Tribunal. His powerful employer being the son-in-law of the Chief Minister of that time, the Minister of Labor had blocked the reference taking advantage of a provision in this Act that no industrial dispute raised by a worker can be taken into cognizance by a labor Court or Industrial Tribunal, despite Conciliation Officer’s recommendation, unless the State Government refers the dispute for adjudication. The then Leader of Opposition Biju Patnaik had witnessed my action, but as he also belonged to the class of exploiters, kept mum in the Assembly over the anti-worker provision in the I.D.Act.

Ramesh Pattnaik was the first victim of this provision in Orissa.

Rath and the rule of terror

Radhanath Rath, whom an anti-people Government had decorated with Padma Bhusan, was running a rule of terror in the Samaja organization. He was a ruthless oppressor and to him, the Samaja employees were just like subjects in a fiefdom. He was hiring and firing them as he liked. He was deriving a sadistic pleasure by keeping the employees intimidated. He had promulgated a standing order not by signing the same with the employees, but with an outsider behind back of the employees. He had ruined the employees’ collective morale to such extent that their trade union was accepting his hegemony in its affairs without any objection. We see trade union activism has grown amongst employees of Samaja only after demise of Rath. This speaks volumes of how Rath had kept the employees intimidated constantly.

And to keep the employee constantly intimidated, he was subjecting them to unfair labor practices as he liked. An example of his whimsical action was Ramesh Chandra Pattnaik.

He was, all on a sudden, given the shock of suspension on 9 April 1969. Rath was expecting that he would go and fall at his feet praying for withdrawal of the suspension order. He could have derived a sadistic pleasure from that. But, instead of falling at his feet, Ramesh preferred a complaint before the Labor officer. He was dismissed from service on 4 July 1969 under prevention of a domestic enquiry having found him guilty of charges framed against him.

Denial of reference under I.D.Act

Pattnaik challenged the illegal order of dismissal before the Labor Officer. Due to non-cooperation of management the conciliation failed.The Conciliation officer sent the failure report to the higher authorities with his recommendation for adjudication. But Rath used his tremendous media power to get the recommendation of the labor law implementation authorities rejected on 5 March 1070.

Browbeating the Civil Court

Ramesh knew of the design and understood that unless the government refers his dispute for adjudication, the Labor Court/Tribunal shall take no cognizance of his case. Therefore he had, without any prejudice to his industrial dispute, invoked the Civil Court jurisdictions on 14 Nov 1969 for declaration that the termination of his service was null and void and that he continued to be in service despite the order of dismissal and was entitled to the emoluments for the period subsequent to the date of dismissal.

In order to browbeat the Civil Court, heavyweight advocates were engaged to oppose the civil case under the plea that Pattnaik being an industrial worker, the Civil Court had no jurisdiction to entertain his case. The Munsif (Presiding Officer of the lowest Civil Court) in his order dated 12 Dec 1974 rejected the management plea and ordered that the suit was maintainable in his Court. He further declared that natural justice was denied to Pattnaik before dismissing him. But, surprisingly he refused to give him the relief sought for, interpreting employment of Pattnaik in Samaja as a contract of personal service.

Law is a conundrum and judges are not punished for wrong interpretations of law.

Appeal and after

Severely disadvantaged by the Munsif’s order that dismissed his suit despite finding how natural justice was denied to the him, Pattnaik approached the First Appellate Court who by its order on 17 Oct 1974 remanded the case to the Munsif with instructions to record findings on the additional issues to be framed consequent upon the amendment of plaint.

Hearing the case afresh, the Munsif said that Pattnaik was entitled to a decree of Rs.852.70 as compensation for “wrongful dismissal” and he was also entitled to pendent lite and future compensation at the rate of Rs.165 per month until he attends the age of 60 years or until his death whichever is earlier. But shockingly. the said Munisif rejected Patnaik’s claim for incremental pay, gratuity and bonus.

Pattnaik moved the Appellate Court again against this later part of the Munsif’s order whereas the management filed cross objections to the Munsif’s finding that the dismissal was “wrongful”.

The First Appellate Court dismissed the management’s cross objections and confirmed that Pattnaik’s dismissal was wrongful.

Rejecting the Munsif’s earlier observation that Pattnaik’s employment in Samaja was a matter of a contract of personal service, the First Appellate Court held that, his service had already acquired “a statutory status” by virtue of his conditions of service being governed by the Standing Orders. The AC therefore ruled that the dismissal of Pattnaik was contrary to law and he was entitled to the emoluments of the service since his dismissal till reinstatement, as his service shall not be treated as broken.

Samaja dragged the matter to High Court

An ideal employer should have seen his own fault in the mirror of the concurrent findings of both the courts that Pattnaik’s dismissal was wrongful and could have amended its wrong steps. But Rath was too anti-worker to honor the judicial wisdom that went in favor of the workman. He took the case to the High Court of Orissa, by using the SoPS. Biswanth Das and Others Vs Ramesh Chandra Patnaik and Another commenced.

The illegal occupiers of Samaja did not challenge the concurrent finding of both the Civil Courts that the order of dismissal of Pattnaik was wrongful inasmuch as it was made in violation of the principles of natural justice as well as the standing orders; but they challenged the Appellate Court’s orders that Pattnaik be treated as in continuous service with emoluments from the date of dismissal.

While thus admitting that their action against Pattnaik was “wrongful”, the wrong-doers told the High Court that once having invoked the conciliation power of the labor officer, the wrongly dismissed workman had no right to move the Civil Court. A single judge bench of the High Court relied upon another single judge verdict to say that, the wrongfully dismissed workman had no right to move the Civil Court, even though the State Government had blocked his right to be heard in the Industrial Tribunal. This judgment was delivered on August 9, 1978.

Ah! August 9 !

Ah! August 9, the day the poor exploited population of India had added their strength to Gandhi’s voice to give the ‘Quit India’ call to the British! What irony! A poor worker’s case was rejected by the State Government to be referred to the Industrial Tribunal for adjudication and the High Court nullified the relief given to him in the Civil Court by saying that the industrial adjudication was the only avenue available to him for redress of the wrong done to him, in the circumstance of the case, even though the I.D.Act says, no Labor Court or Industrial Tribunal can take cognizance of any industrial dispute unless referred to by the Government. What irony! What a great irony on the day of an anniversary of ‘quit India movement’ that the working class had made a success!

Law is a conundrum

Law is a conundrum and judges are free to interpret the laws and deliver their verdicts as their wisdom dictates, even if that denied justice to the wronged worker.

Heroic death of a Martyr

But the wronged poor man was having an exemplary workman spirit too real to acquiesce into accepting the single judge of the High Court as the last word in Law. He went in appeal to the Supreme Court.

He was physically and financially ruined. He had disposed of ancestral landed properties to sustain his family of six members including two sons and two daughters – all school going – and to meet the litigation cost.

Enforced idleness had already put him in slow starvation. Before he got justice in the Supreme Court, he breathed his last.

The great fighter carrying in his body the sufferings and determinations of the working class to overcome the sufferings, and epitomizing the spirit of the working class to fight against exploitation, died a heroic death.

Baton of fight carried by the wife

After his death, his wife Smt. Prasannaa Pattnaik took up the baton of fight from her husband’s funeral pyre and made herself and her children the substitutes for the Appellant in the case before the Supreme Court of India.

The Supreme Court disapproved the judgement of the single judge of the Orissa High Court and passed an order on allowing the appeal of Ramesh Chandra Pattnaik.

This order is very significant. I quote the relevant portion of the judgement below:

“We have heard learned counsels for the parties. During the pendency of this appeal, the workman died. His widow and four children have been brought on record as legal heirs. We are prima facie of the view that the High Court fell into error in reversing the judgment of the first appellate court. It is, however, not necessary for us to go into the merits of the controversy. Keeping in view the facts and circumstances of this case, specifically that the first appellate court granted relief to the workman as back as march 1976, we direct the respondent-management to pay a sum of Rs. two lacs as compensation to the widow of the workman within two months from today”.

It was a moral victory for Ramesh Chandra Pattnaik and his family. It had come to them on 23 January 1996.

January 23 revered in Orissa in matter of her two great sons – Veer Surendra Sai and Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose, became a day of posthumous victory of the Martyr amongst her working children, Ramesh Chandra Pattnaik.

Fight not over

But the fight against the oppressive management of Samaja is not yet over. Devi Prasanna Nayak, Subash Chandra Singh and others have been fighting for justice to the exploited employees of this this paper even today, and the State Government is continuing to ignore the unfair labor practices and exploitation resorted to by the illegal occupiers of the paper.

Hansada hoodwinked the High Court, embarrassed Orissa by attending Lok Sabha as an accused in custody

Subhas Chandra Pattanayak

Should the High Court allow itself to be hoodwinked by an under-trial prisoner, who is a ruling party member of the Lok Sabha? This question needs cogitation, because judiciary is the last hope for the people when compradors and criminals rule the roost in politics and, hence, must not be the lost hope.

Orissa’s Ruling party has many such members, who, if cases were not limping in courts, would have been branded as criminals.

Ramchandra Hansada, ruling party member of Lok Sabha from Mayurbhanj Constituency is in Jail as an under-trial-prisoner in a case of chit fund scam. He was arrested on 04 November 2014 and the Central Bureau of Investigations (CBI) is prosecuting him in connection with R.C.No.50/S/2014-SCB/KOL.

In jail custody, he has failed to attend the sessions of the Lok Sabha. He has not taken permission of the Lok Sabha to remain absent. So his absence is unauthorized and voluminous enough to threaten him with disqualification under Article 101 (4) of the Constitution of India.

Article 101 (4)

The Article stipulates, “If for a period of sixty days a member of either House of Parliament is without permission of the House absent from all meetings thereof, the House may declare his seat vacant:
Provided that in computing the said period of sixty days no account shall be taken of any period during which the House is prorogued or is adjourned for more than four consecutive days”.

Using this Article as a ploy, he tried to hoodwink the Judiciary for bail, but failed.

Orders of the lower Courts

On 12.February 2-15, the Special CJM, CBI rejected his petition dated 6 February 2015 on the ground that, Article 101 (4) of the Constitution “shall not come to his rescue”, as “his detention in the judicial custody under criminal charges is lawful” when the offenses allegedly committed by him “are not within the due discharge of his lawful function as a sitting member of Parliament”.

The Sessions Judge, Khurda at Bhubaneswar also refused his petition for bail – B.A.No.183 of 2015 – on 21 Februaary 2015, relying upon a ruling of the Apex Court reported in 1966 SCR (2) 406 that rights of a member of Parliament to attend the session of Parliament to participate in the debate “are not constitutional rights in the strict sense of the term and quite clearly, they are not fundamental rights at all”. Refusing to be misled to accept a general Notice of Secretary-General of Parliament to a member for attending the Parliament session as a Summon from the President which Hansada was insisting to be, the Sessions Judge refused him bail, as to him, “nature of the offenses committed, particularly seriousness of economic offense” are too severe for enlarging him on bail; and when “further investigation is in progress” it would not be in consonance with “the larger interest of society and state”.

Writ Petition in the High Court

The High Court of Orissa was moved thereafter in W.P. ( C ) No. 3715 of 2015 seeking “release” of Hansada from jail to enable him to attend the Parliament, as otherwise his membership would collapse under Article 101 (4) of the Constitution necessitating a fresh election in his constituency of Mayurbhanj which would denude the exchequer of huge money. The High Court, in a ruling on Misc. Case No. 3722 of 2015 arising out of the Writ case, has rendered Article 101 (4) of the Constitution inconsequential in his case and helped him retain his membership by releasing him from the jail to attend the ensuing session of the Lok Sabha for a day on 20 March 2015.

Orissa in embarrassment

In this ruling, the CBI is directed to receive him from the jail as an accused under custody and hand him over to the Security officer of the Parliament who in turn shall return him to CBI after he joins the Lok Sabha session for a day. March 23 has been stipulated as the day of his reproduction before the CBI Court at Bhubaneswar to be remanded to the jail again. We consider such presentation of the MP to the Lok Sabha very embarrassing to Orissa.

Was this order necessary? Had Hansada not been judicially helped to overcome the mischief of Article 101 (4), was he sure to forfeit his membership? We would like to seek the answer.

Peculiarity of Article 101 (4)

The peculiarity of this article is that it has an inbuilt remedial provision that a member may resort to in order to avoid disqualification due to absence for a period of sixty days or more. He/she has to seek permission to stay absent for a long period under unavoidable circumstances. Hansada was never debarred from applying for permission. He has told the High Court that he has applied for leave of absence, which has not been denied. This means, mischief of Article 101 (4) was not to hit him with termination of his membership. The very thinking of termination of his membership while his application for leave of absence is pending in the Parliament is itself an affront to dignity of Parliament, being suggestive of possible contravention of the law of natural justice in the highest law making House of India.

Remedial Provisions

Lest the law of natural justice gets contravened in matter of Article 101(4), provisions are made for notice to the member found absent for 40 days, so that the member shall apply for leave of absence before the Article gets activated against him or her. This is as per recommendation of the Committee on Absence of Members on 13 March 1956, when founding fathers of our Constitution were members of this Committee. On 24 March 1975, 11 April 1975 and 25 July 1975, CAM further prescribed that reminder would be sent to a member when his/her continuous absence amounts to fifty days. Hansada has not revealed whether or not he was reminded by the Lok Sabha Secretariat of his absence. If he was not reminded of his absence in time, the Lok Sabha was in such fault that termination of his membership on absence of sixty days (in fact 55 days by the day the High Court issued the order in question) would have been impossible, because, all the members in the current CAM are supposed to have expertise in handling leave of absence of members.

Moreover, there are provisions in practice for condonation of absence without permission, even when the period exceeds sixty days. Condonation of absence of B. Shiva Rao without permission for 68 days [3R (CAM-1 LS)] is one of many instances.

The House Committee

The Lok Sabha has a Committee to deal with absence of Members from the sittings of the House, created under Rule 325.

This Committee, under Rule 326 (1) (i) and (ii) is empowered to consider all applications from members for leave of absence from the sittings of the House and to examine and report every case where a member has been absent for a period of 60 days or more, without permission, from the sittings of the House.

Practice and Procedure

So, even if Hansda was to be hit with Article 101 (4) by not joining the sessions of the Lok Sabha for more than 60 days his membership was not to be terminated on ground of absence. The Court has recorded that the CBI has already informed the Speaker about the arrest of Hansada and his detention jn jail as an under-trial prisoner. So the Parliament is aware of his absence due to detention in jail. Detention in Jail is a recognized ground for condonation of absence beyond sixty days. (Leave of Absence of Members; Practice and Procedure of Parliament, p.409).

Without travesty of repetition, it can, therefore, be said that even if he would have stayed away from the sittings for more than 60 days, it should have been wrong to assume that by such absence he was to forfeit his membership. The Committee on absence of members might have recommended in his favor as “detention in jail” could never have been considered as willful absence. Might be, the Committee could have recommended for “condonation” of his absences on the ground of “detention in jail” in view of precedences created by the CAM, one of which is cited supra.

Direction should have been different

Orissa High Court should have taken this constitutional provision, invigorated with Rules and Procedures of the Parliament into consideration and should have directed Hansda to avail the constitutional facility prescribed for members of Parliament who remain absent around or beyond the permissible period of 60 days, instead of allowing him to attend the Lok Sabha session for a day under judicial custody.

But the role of the CAM, and the remedies available to him under the scheme of CAM and Parliamentary precedences were not placed before the High Court by Hansada. Obviously the High Court was hoodwinked.

Why Bail? Are not bails lingering litigations? Supreme Court should issue a Whitepaper

Subhas Chandra Pattanayak
Orissa High Court has enlarged suspended BJD legislator Pravat Kumar Tripathy on bail. He has been released from the jail to extravaganza of a reception by his sycophants, posing as if the appropriate Court was wrong in remanding him to jail. Tripathy was arrested by the CBI on 31 October 2014 on charges of involvement with chit fund Artha Tattva. His bail application was opposed by the CBI on the ground that, once enlarged on bail, he being a political heavyweight, the witnesses may be influenced and evidences may be tampered. But, bail was granted by the Orissa High Court. It has given birth to speculations that the bail granted to him may open up the gates to freedom of other politicians presently in the jail under chit fund related charges.

Every offense in India is bailable. The word “non-bailable” does not extinguish the provision of bail. It means, if the offense is non-bailable only higher echelon of judiciary can grant the bail. So, there is no wrong in granting the bail to Tripathy by the High Court.

But, can the High Court obstruct any cleaver and clandestine attempts to tackle the witnesses or evidences? Has anywhere at any time the judiciary has acted a secret police to catch and thwart any act in action to tamper with the evidences by the accused released on bail?

On the other hand, bails are helping the culprits linger the litigations everywhere. And, in many cases, it is seen that the under trial offenders on bail are getting acquittals ultimately. Whether or not the freedom given to them through bails foils the prosecution is never studied.

It is time, the Supreme Court of India should publish a Whitepaper on bails so that the people can know how bails affect the litigation time and can study the final verdicts in matters of culprits enlarged on bail.
Judicial discretion in matter of bail should not be factors to foil prosecution.

High Court in Apparent Error in Pratyusha Case, as Naveen Patnaik is not Asked to Explain Why He Found Her the Most Suitable

Subhas Chandra Pattanayak

The ruling BJD is de facto owned by Naveen Patnaik, whom all the members thereof know as their supreme master (‘the supremo’) and obey, exactly as my German Shepherd Dog knows me as its master and obeys my orders.

Patnaik decides who should contest from which constituency, provides funds for electioneering, projecting them as party candidates under the pretense of democratic practice.

He appoints his sycophants in any post available in Government, Public Sector and his party and even uses his personal factotum to take action against any of them as and when he wants.

He treats Orissa as his fee simple and squanders away Orissa’s natural resources like his father’s property in interest of any private – even foreign – industry and education mafia as he likes.

All his offenses are supported by his stooges, as they know, thereby is generated the election funds. Their participation in elections begin with nomination of candidates by him.

He or his authorized agent issues party tickets and inform the Returning Officer of this, basing on which, his party symbol is allotted to his candidates.

So, Naveen Patnaik is basically and entirely responsible for the nomination papers, which the BJD candidates file before the ROs.

The RO is guided by Naveen Patnaik as the issuer of party tickets pursuant to which election symbol of BJD gets allotted.

Laws prohibit a non-Indian to contest election.

So, the party boss that issues party tickets to a non-Indian is responsible for acceptance of a non-Indian by the RO/Election Commission as a legitimate candidate.

Kandhamal MP Ms. Pratyusha Rajeswari is alleged to be not of Indian nationality. She is alleged to be a lady of Nepal, staying in India as a widow of an Indian.

On this allegation, the High Court of Orissa has asked Pratyusha to explain as to why her election to Lok Sabha should not be nullified on nationality ground and has issued notices to the RO and the EC to explain their positions.

But Naveen Patnaik, the so-called supremo of BJD, being basically responsible for misguiding the RO/EC into accepting Pratyusha as a legitimate candidate to the extent of throwing the entire electoral process in to the feared fiasco, has not been asked by the HC to say as to why he set as his/his party’s candidate a non-Indian.

I think, this is an error that needs to be removed and Naveen Patnaik needs to be be asked by the High Court to explain as to why he shall not be responsible for crime against the country if his Kandhamal MP for whom he had actively campaigned along with his ministerial colleagues, is not of Indian Nationality.

If the allegation is found correct, Naveen is bound to be punished. But for this, it is essential that he be called for to explain as to why he had found Pratyusha the most suitable to be set up as his party candidate.