May Day had the best of celebration in Bhubaneswar as an exploited employee of Orissa’s premier daily ‘The Samaja’ Sri Gagan Parida launched a milestone book on forgery, corruption and exploitation of workers in the major news daily, the founders of which were the most revered humanitarian leaders known as Panchasakha of Satyabadi, headed by Utkalmani Gopabandhu Das.

Book CoverThe book is ‘Samaja in Maze of Forgery’. It is a compilation of articles of Journalist Subhas Chandra Pattanayak published in President of Utkalmani Newspaper Employees Association (UNEA), journalist Deviprasanna Nayak has compiled it.

The book has exposed how two former ministers of the State, one of who was the paper’s longest time editor, and being so, had bagged India’s third highest civilian honor – Padma Bhusana, had forged the Will of Utkalmani Pt. Gopabandhu Das to grab the ‘Samaja’ under cover of the Servants of the People Society (SoPS) and how since then the illegal occupiers of the renowned paper have been exploiting the workforce in blatant violation of industrial/labor laws by way of corrupting the State Administration and misusing the process of Law.

Subhas Chandra PattanayakIn introducing the book, author Subhas Chandra Pattanayak alleged that two former education ministers – Lingaraj Mishra and Radhanath Rath – had forged the Will of Pandit Gopabandhu to grab the Samaja under cover of the SoPS and had pushed the pride of Orissa – The JATIYA BANA VIDYALAYA to starvation death.

The book further exposes, he said, how a later editor of Samaja, Ms. Manorama Mahapatra, daughter of Radhanath Rath, had also forged the signature of a sub-editor to deny him his legitimate rank and salaries.

The book exposes how huge amount of rupees are swindled from the revenue of the Samaja by the Servants of the People Society, by using a forged Will of Gopabandhu and how the Registrar of Newspapers for India is sleeping over the allegation of ‘Save the Samaja Forum’, and how the District Judge office at Cuttack was used as a ‘breeding bed of forgery’ by the illegal occupiers of the Samaja.

The book is full of documentary evidences of the serious crimes committed by Radhanath Rath who was editor of the Samaja till his death and other two editors and members of the Servants of the People Society.

The book mentions how the workers are perishing under unfair labor practices, without getting regularized even after serving the major daily newspaper for more than 30 years, he said.

gagan paridaOne such worker is Sri Gagan Parida. He has been pushed into instant termination of his thirty years long continuous service, the moment he urged upon the management to designate him as a regular employee so that he could draw the benefits available under the labor laws. Like him. About 20 persons who had been working everyday regularly for decades in hope of regularization of their services have been summarily dismissed as they wanted to be regularized.

Save the Samaja Forum (SSF) that has published the book preferred to launch the book in the hands of Parida as he is the man who has worked in the paper for the longest period without being regularized.

Release of the book

Held in Lohia Academy auditorium with joint convener of SSF, eminent journalist Prasanta Patnaik in the chair, the meeting was addressed by Subartta editor Pradyumna Satapathy, Samadrusti editor Sudhir Patnaik and eminent author and founder editor of Chithi, political scientist Prof. Biswaranjan.

Adhyapak BiswaranjanProf. Biswaranjan called upon the Government to initiate action against the SoPS and retrieve from it all the money it has taken from the Samaja revenue for revival of the Bana Vidyalaya, as suggested in the book, without any loss of time, as publication of the Will of Gopabandhu that the occupiers of the Samaja are using in all official forums along with the signed probated copy of the real Will, has established that the occupier of the Samaja have forged and have been using the forged Will of Gopabandhu.

Sudhir Patnaik


Sri Sudhir Patnaik expressed absolute solidarity with SSF and demanded that in view of the exposure, the State Government should take prompt action against the miscreants and stop the Samaja from being further looted by unauthorized people.

Pradyumna SatapathyA single moment should not be lost, roared Sri Pradyumna Satapathy, in punishing the fellows that have evidently forged the Will of Gopabandhu and have swindled till date the revenue of the paper, while keeping the employees intimidated under hire and fire policy. He expressed total solidarity with the SSF in the noble cause and warned the intellectuals of the state that future will not pardon if despite publication of the irrefutable evidences of forgery, they stay silent spectators. He called upon the State Government to wake up to the occasion and save the icon paper of the State, founded by the noblest of noble souls like Utkalmani Gopabandhu and is four friend collectively famous as the Panchasakhas of Satyabadi.

Felicitations were offered to two great fighters from amongst the workers of the Samaja. They are Sahid Ramesh Chandra Patnaik and Sangrami Pitambar Mishra.

L.Senapari for Ramesh Patnaik

Sahid Ramesh Chandra Patnaik was summarily dismissed after putting up two decades long service without any allegation or charges. The labor officer had recommended his case for adjudication in the Industrial Tribunal. But, misusing media power, the government was dissuaded to refer his case to the tribunal. Industrial Disputes Act stipulates that no labor court of Industrial Tribunal can take cognizance of an Industrial Dispute unless referred to by the Government. Thus disadvantaged, Patnaik had gone to civil court that found the action of the management illegal. But instead of acting an ideal employer, the management knocked down the case in the Orissa High Court and forced the poor worker to seek justice, if he could, in the Supreme Court. The Supreme Court struck down the High Court order and awarded a sum of Rs.2,000,00/- to be paid by the management within two months. But by then, Patnaik had passed away under slow starvation. To his co-workers, he became a martyr in the long battle for justice. So, on the occasion, he was felicitated posthumously. On his behalf, President of Cuttack District Journalists Association, Lalatendu Senapati received the felicitation.

felicitation_Pitambar Mishra

The second worker to be felicitated was Journalist Pitambar Mishra. He was a sub-editor whom without issuing any appointment letter, the management was using in reporting the evening and night city of Cuttack, over and above his desk job in daytime. After putting up eleven years of service, when he prayed to be regularized as a sub-editor in which rank he was originally engaged, he was summarily dismissed. His case, however, was referred to the Labor Court, Bhubaneswar. But, the management challenged the maintainability of the case under the plea that he was not an employee of the Samaja. The management, to the horror of Mishra, produced an agreement in a stamp paper where Mishra’s relation with Samaja was “principal to principal”, not employee to employer. Ms. Manorama Mohapatra had signed the agreement on first part and Mishra was shown to have signed it as the second part. Mishra challenged it as a forged agreement produced by the management to deny him his dues. His disputed signature was sent by the Court to the State Handwriting Expert and Forensic investigation established that Mishra’s signature was forged. With such clear evidence of forgery committed by the management, the reference went in favor of Mishra and because by then he had exceeded the superannuation age. Instead of ordering for his reinstatement, the Court commuted his legitimate dues and asked the management to pay the same immediately. But, the habitually litigant management has challenged the Labor Court award in the High Court, forcing Mishra to suffer starvation. The SSF, therefore, decided to felicitate Mishra for the fighting spirit he has displayed against exploitation by the powerful media house.

From the audience, strong supports were expressed with Tusarkant, a known conscience-keeper who shares his original thinking with the society writing prolifically in the media, stressing upon speedy but planned action against the wrongdoers.

Devi Prasanna NayakPresident of Utkalmani Newspaper Employees Association, well-known desk-journalist Devi Prasanna Nayak detailed how internecine rivalry amongst the members of SoPS, which has evidently kept the Samaja under unauthorized occupation, has demoralized the workers and how the dedicated employees of the Samaja have been subjected to concocted cases and stage-managed enquiries and illegal dismissals.

Prasanta PatnaikPresident Sri Prasanta Patnaik announced that the SSF shall stand with the employees of the Samaja in their battle against exploitation and called upon the Government to initiate penal action against members of SoPS who are yet using the forged Will of Gopabandhu for their personal and collective benefit. The SSF campaign shall continue till SoPS is ousted from ownership of Samaja and the paper of the people is retrived from illegal ownership. He thanks the employees of the Samaja for their principled fight and called upon all labor unions to stand with the employees of the Samaja in their days of stark disadvantage. He called upon the RNI to peruse the exposure of forgery made in the released book of Subhas Pattanayak and deregister immediately the SoPS as owner of the Samaja.



Coordinator of SSF Pabitra Mohan Maharatha coordinated the event.

Prasant Patnaik’s book on contemporary politics and society unveiled

release of mo drustireA compilation of columns contributed to Suryaprava by eminent journalist Prasanta Patnaik was released by B.K.Publications Pvt Ltd at Bhubaneswar Sunday evening.

We are reproducing here the report published in

It was intensely a personal journey where larger picture of society automatically becomes a part of my existence, said Prasanta patnaik, veteran columnist, story teller and political commentator. Talking to a select group of writers, journalists, social workers and sensible readers Sri Patnaik spoke strait from his heart on what, how and why he writes.

His sixth book “Mo Drustire” has been unveiled and dedicated to the readers in a ceremony at Pantha Niwas, Bhubaneswar on 19th of October. Former judge of Odisha High court justice A.S.Naidu released the book as chief guest. While speaking on the ceremony justice Naidu outlined few vital points of Sri patnaik’s writing and it’s relevance to our time and society.elaborately speaking on the current state of politics and governance justice Naidu emphasized that a writer must play his role as a social participant and protester of evils.

Famous poet and former vice chancellor of Ravenshaw University Devdas Chhotray spoke about the unseen creative sparks of the book hidden in between the lines.Sri Chhotray said that literature and politics go hand in hand as blood brothers. There is a creative side of every journalist which can at times sparks marvelous literary potential. Critic and historian Professor Pritish Acharya reviewed the book and presented an objective analysis of the book. He pointed out that every political writer must look in to the global context of the local politics. Poet and critic Kedar Mishra coordinated and introduced the book, author and the guests to the audience. Publisher and owner of BK publication Bijaya Kumar Mohapatra proposed official vote of thanks.

The chief guest felicitated cover Designer Sudhir Lenka, renowned cartoonist Kamalakanta Rath, young photographer Ayush patnaik, writer’s assistants Subhasree and Sagarika for their contribution to bring out the book.

Newspaper is not a private matter

Subhas Chandra Pattanayak

Eminent journalist Prasanta Patnaik, whose column ‘Trutiya Nayana’ had given tremendous credibility and readership to the Oriya daily ‘Pragativadi’, was embarrassed by the owner/operator of the paper to such extent that he has declared not to contribute his column any more to that media organization.

“My column will not appear any more in Pragativadi”, he has notified through social media Facebook.

Pragativadi had begun with begged for financial support from the public. I was the first man to have donated Rs.15/- to the fund for its publication, when its founder Pradyumna Bal had not even been able to print a receipt book for the donations/advance subscription. But his zeal was remarkable, as he was in forefront of agitation against Mrs. Indira Gandhi’s misrule.

That I was the first man to have donated to its funds was witnessed by late revolutionary Manmohan Mishra and my elder brotherly Journalist Ramahari Mishra.

Let me elaborate.

I got a post card from Pradyuman Bal inviting me to a meeting of like-minded friends to be held at Jhanjirimangala in Cuttack to discuss how to develop a media weapon to fight Mrs Gandhi’s misrule. I reached his place at 5 PM on the appointed day. Rabi Das, who, later had become editor of Pragativadi, had escorted me to the inner courtyard of the house, where Manmohan babu was sitting on a cotton ‘Dari (a sort of very coarse carpet) with Pradyumna Bal. After about 15 minutes the 2nd man to attend the meeting – journalist Ramahari Mishra, then with Amrit Bazar Patrika at Cuttack – appeared. Manmohan babu kept us engaged by narrating his experience in jail, from where he had come on parole and with details of how Bhagavat Behera’s wife had sent personal letters to jailers to know of whereabouts of her husband and about his health. No third man had arrived till 7 PM. I had other works to attend. As Pradyumna babu had, in the meantime, told of his intention to bring out Pragativadi as a fortnightly, I had asked him about how much amount of money he proposes for annual subscription and how many people he had invited to the meeting, to which he had replied that he had posted a thousand post cards, and, if 1000 annual subscribers could be enlisted against Rs. 15/- each, publication of the fortnightly would have no constraints. I gave him that amount and begged leave, as we assumed that fear for police might have stymied the invitees, who, on personal contact, may have no hesitation to pay their subscription in advance, the amount being so very small. Then Ramahari babu also gave the amount and came out with me, as staying for more time there could have posed difficulties in getting a rickshaw for Tulasipur, where he was staying.

When Pragativadi was published, Pradyumna babu had never sent me a copy. Aware of the character of politicians in general, I didn’t mind. He, however, remained a friend till his last days.

This unmemorable experience is recalled just to say that, the paper ‘Pragativadi’ owes its origin to donations of unacknowledged paltry sums of money by the public of Orissa.

By embarrassing Prasanta Patnaik as aforesaid, the present owner of the paper has behaved as if the paper was created out of his family’s private property.

The income of a newspaper is the byproduct of contributions of the journalists, because the paper is basically a journalistic venture. It earns subscriptions, because journalists put the information that people want. It earns from advertisements, because the works of the journalists gives it a readership that the advirtisers want to reach. Pragativadi is no exception.

And, if Pragativadi got a readership, Prasanta Patnaik’s contributions thereto is simply unfathomable.

Its acceptability to public was for the first time discernible when its pages had in-depth reports on the plights of rural reporter Naba Kishore Mohapatra on whom the rising mafia had taken revenge for their exposure by perpetrating gang-rape till death on his wife Chhabirani in the days of J. B. Patnaik’s first phase of Chief-Ministership. Prasanta Patnaik had contributed those reports with necessary pictorial in-put.

And, for having, thereby, enhanced the credibility of Pragativadi while exposing JB’s misrule that extinguished Chhabirani, Orissa had witnessed, how eventually Prasanta Patnaik was thrown out of his official residence.

The same newspaper, in hands of the heirs of Pradyumna Bal has misbehaved with the same Prasanta Patnaik, after being established as a major paper with his help, is something, which no nastiness can ever surpass.

What is Prasanta Patnaik?

He is a very simple-natured, uncomplicated, class conscious media person who loves his friends and serves his profession, with tireless readiness to act a sentinel of the people with utmost honesty and magnanimity that he commands. He is an Ajatashatru having no ill-feeling for anybody; yet he is a doyen amongst the scribes of Orissa with uncompromising stance on ethicality of the profession.

He is so pure in mind and heart that he has deemed it his duty to inform his readers that his column shall no more be available in Pragativadi. He has not raised the issue of remunerative compensation, which Pragativadi is legally liable to pay him. He is too magnanimous to raise this issue when the son of his friend holds the reign of the paper. He has decided to stop syndicating to this paper only on the ground of self-respect. In reacting to this, eminent poet and intellectual, Devdas Chhotray has rightly said in Facebook, “Pradyumna Bala must be turning in his grave!”

Dear Samahit Bal, the paper’s editor, I have tried to contact you on this issue; but perhaps time plays the tricks. However, please note, newspaper may be a private property, but not at all a private matter. Therefore, we condemn the way Prasanta babu is embarrassed, and as a friend of your late lamented father, expect that you shall amend yourself.

Is there any justice for the murdered journalist? Orissa should be ashamed of its pusillanimity

Subhas Chandra Pattanayak

A month has elapsed. As ORISSA MATTERS had put it, the killers had found the Police Station area in Khalikote in the home district of the Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik quite a safe place to commit the crime. Journalist Tarun Acharya was killed coldblooded by the terminators of human rights in the evening of May 27. But, Police that was sleeping then, is in slumber as yet.

It was a brutal assault on Press. Neither the Chief Minister in whose district this crime was perpetrated, nor the Opposition in the Assembly whom every moment to find fault with administration is a golden opportunity, have woke up to the occasion to shade even their meretricious tears on the loss of the precious life. Neither any politician worth his salt has condemned the murder nor has the Eastern Media Limited that was using his input to gain more audience stood even posthumously with the man, lest thereby his employment with the flagships of the organization may raise complicated labor issues.

In such a circumstances, eminent journalist and leader of Media Unity for Freedom of Press, Prasanta Patnaik has issued a statement appealing the conscience of everybody who loves democracy to react to this dastardly attack on the fourth pillar of democracy. We quote below his statement –

A month has passed since the brutal murder of our journalist friend TARUN ACHARYA of Khallikote in Ganjam district. Despite the demands of media persons through various journalist bodies and MEDIA UNIT FOR FREEDOM OF PRESS (MUFP) for arrest of all involved in this crime and to take exemplary steps by trying all the accused persons in the First Track Courts and giving adequate compensation to the next of kin of Tarun, s far the State Government has not taken any action.

Very strangely our popular Chief Minister Mr Naveen Patnaik and none from the Government have condemned the brutal murder nor have expressed sympathy to the bereaved family including his young widow, old parents and other family members.

It is a clear attack on the freedom of press in Orissa none of our political leaders including the leader of opposition have so far raised voice in the Assembly which is presently on session. None of the Civil Society bodies, intellectuals, women and youth organizations has also raised voice against such heinous attack on the Fourth Pillar of Democracy.

While only two persons allegedly involved in the crime have been arrested others have not been arrested and the police have not been able to reach at the root of the conspiracy and find out the persons really responsible for the crime.

Tarun, though was working for the SAMBAD and KANAK TV and his reports on the cashew mafia in these media is said to be the real cause behind his murder so far the management of this media house have not come forward to claim that Tarun was their reporter nor have taken any step strikingly condemning the brutal killing of a brave Journalist like Tarun Acharya.

I therefore appeal to all the media persons irrespective organizations they are working for and professional organizations to which they belong to join their hands and strongly fight against such threat to media persons in Orissa.

I also appeal to all professional bodies and MEDIA UNIT FOR FREEDOM OF PRESS (MUFP), all the editors, management of Media Houses to express their solidarity for this great cause of Orissa media and press their legitimate demands.

Friends who agree with my views may kindly send their suggestions at the earliest so that we can organize a meeting of all media friends working in print, electronic, web and visual media etc. to finalize our future course of action.

Sad News to share: Harabala Patnaik no more

final MEETHarabala Patanik, wife of eminent freedom fighter and one of the founders of C.P.I. in Odisha Late Raghunath Patnaik of Olasingh village in Khurda district passed away at 5.45 a.m. on Friday ( 6th December ) at Bhubaneswar. She was 92 and has left behind her 3 sons and 8 daughters, a large number of grand and great grand children.

Daughter of a respectable Sarbarakar of erstwhile raja of Nayagarh late Banchhanidhi Patnaik , Harabala, though had no formal education, became very much active socially and politically after her marriage with Raghunath , who had left his education while a student of Ravenshaw College , Cuttack to join the freedom struggle. Subsequently when her husband joined the Communist Party of India under leadership of Bhagabati Charan Panigrahi as one of the founder members, she boldly faced harassment of the police.

The comrades while in underground use to come in deep nights through a secret door while her husband was away in party mission and she had to cook for them without hesitation. According to many veteran leftist leaders, she was not only feeding them with good food at the odd hours of night, she was also packing enough dry foods and rice etc, for them to sustain for weeks while underground.

She had entertained with tasty food to leaders like Naba Krushna Chaudhury, Dr Hare Krushna Mahtab, Manmohan Mishra, Godavarish Mohapatra, Godavarish Mishra, Banamali Patnaik , Prananath Patnaik and many others.
Besides taking care of all her nine children she also took care of seven children of her sister-in-law Bindodini who died at a young age.

She was a mother figure for all the local people and was loved and respected by one and all. Harabala’s eldest son Prasanta is a media person of repute while her second son Pravat is an entrepreneur in Andhra Pradesh. Her third son Dr Pragati who was serving the deprived people of Nagaland had fell victim to the bullets of separatists and fourth son is engaged in business. Her eldest daughter Prativa who was married to freedom fighter and ideal teacher Kanhu Charan Patnaik expired two years ago. Rest of her children are well established in their own fields.

When her body was taken for cremation a large of people from Olasingh and adjacent villages joined to pay their last respect to the departed soul.

SSF alerts Orissa Chief Minister to the impropriety he would commit by entertaining illegal occupiers of the Samaja

The gang of hooligans who have occupied the Samaja on the basis of a forged will of Pt. Gopabandhu Das have been trying to ingratiate themselves with Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik in order to earn official support to continue their illicit control over the State’s premier newspaper.

They have demolished Gopabandhu’s statue in Gopabandhu Bhawan to make space for the CM to inaugurate a new one in its place in order to project themselves as genuine owners of the Samaja.

Save the Samaja Forum has alerted the CM to the impropriety he would be committing by entertaining the illegal occupiers of the Samaja. The CM’s Secretary Mr. Pandian has received the Notice from SSF. Here is the text of the Notice, submitted digitally as well as in writing.

The Hon’ble Chief Minister, Odisha

Sub- A request generated under Article-54 of the Constitution of India.

Hon’ble Sir,
It is being circulated in Cuttack that you have given your kind consent to unveil a statue of Utkalmani Gopabandhu Das in Gopabandhu Bhawan (The Samaja) premises on July 08, 2013.
Being dutiful citizens, we deem it proper to tell you that your participation in the said function would contribute to the credibility of an illegal body which is organizing the function.
To elaborate, the Samaja founded by Utkalmani Pandit Gopabandhu Das has been grabbed by Servants of the People Society through a forged WILL of Gopabandhu Das. The evidence of forgery having come to public attention, a combine of journalists namely “Save the Samaja Forum” has attracted attention of the apex authority on publication of newspapers in India, i.e. the Registrar of Newspapers for India and the RNI in its turn has asked the ADM of Cuttack to enquire into the matter.
The Servants of the People Society is yet to prove that Gopabandhu’s WILL by virtue of which they have occupied Samaja is not a forged WILL.
When the very locus standai of the Servants of the People Society as owner of the Samaja is so severely challenged it would be absolutely wrong on part of the Chief Minister to join the same fraudulent group in inauguration of a statue of Utkalmani which itself is an affront to sacred memories of Utkalmani.
You shall be shocked to know, Sir, that the illegal occupiers of Samaja have demolished a heritage statue of Utkalmani Pandit Gopabandhu as the same was inaugurated by Dr. Radhanath Rath and the chief of the gang that has illegally occupied Samaja namely Manubhai Patel wants every mark of Dr. Rath wiped out as Dr. Rath had exposed his moral turpitude and act of misappropriation of Samaja Fund. Therefore, Patel wants a new statue of Utkalmani to replace the old statue carrying Rath’s name on the plate comprising the base of the said statue.
By inaugurating this statue you shall be contributing to the heinous mischief of Manubhai Patel and his gang which would be a shame to the people of Odisha.
On the other hand an inquiry committee headed by Justice Arijit Pasayat has in its report given enough instances of embezzlement of hundreds of crores of rupees from the Samaja Fund by members of the same gang that has invited you to inaugurate the statue. The gang comprises Manubhai Patel, Bheem sen Yadav, Deepak Malviya, Niranjan Rath etc.
In Delhi as well as Cuttack police has registered FIRs from the Sr. Life Member of SoPS Sri K.C. Tripathi who had filed the same in his capacity as Officiating President of SoPS. To escape prosecution Patel and his gang have captured the SoPS and the Samaja through mischief of a fake election which is challenged in the Civil Court.
The District Judge, Cuttack in F.A.O. No. 113/2012 has restrained Patel and his gang to take any policy decision and banned from making any expenditure other than the amount necessary for day to day running of the Samaja including employees’ salary. The Hon’ble High Court of Orissa hearing the challenge petition of the Patel gang in W.P.(C). No. 7650/2013 has also confirmed the order of the learned District Judge, Cuttack.
Replacement of the old statue which was in perfect condition and was a heritage statue of Utkalmani by a new statue as well as the expenditure incurred in such replacement is blatantly illegal and contemptuous to the order of the District Judge, Cuttack.
Your participation in this mischief would be viewed as a very serious breach of law as well as orders of the competent court. It would be very embarrassing to the people of Odisha.
We therefore thought it prudent to place the above facts before you for your kind decision.
Even as we accept that participating in a function is your prerogative as the Chief Minister it was to our conscience that we should say that participation of the Chief Minister in an act of public mischief is neither desirable nor proper.

Kind Regards,
Prasanta Patnaik,
Subhash Chandra Pattanayak,
(Joint conveners of Save the Samaja Forum)

Scribes stress on action against rowdy medicos and IIC of Mangalabag P.S.

Cuttack based scribes belonging to both the print and electronic media, in a signed memorandum to Orissa’s Director General of Police today stressed on action against medicos who kidnapped two reporters of Naxatra News from the medicine indoor of SCB Medical College on June 15 and tortured them in wrongful confinement for more than two hours. They also demanded stern action against the inspector-in-charge of Police of Mangalabag PS for discernible siding with the rowdy medicos.


Members of the presidium of Media Unity for Freedom of Press (MUFP) Prasanta Patnaik and Subhas Chandra Pattanayak and coordinator of Save the Samaja Forum Pabitra Maharatha accompanied the aggrieved scribes in a major rally to Police headquarters. In absence of the DGP, the memorandum was received by Additional DGP Mr. Sanjib Marik.

tortured journalist briefs the ADGP

The tortured scribes, Chittaranjan Samantray and Debasis Mohanty gave a detail description of how they were shanghaied into wrongful confinement in a hostel of the medical college by a gang of around a hundred medical students and interns and physically tortured. They were forced to kneel down for hours and then forced to proceed to the same medicine indoor for begging apology before the indoor patients before whom on June 14 they had raised objections to what the house surgeons had said about the father of Samantray.

Samantray’s father was admitted into the medicine ward for treatment. The house surgeons pronounced that the senior Samantray had developed damage in both his kidneys and insisted that he should be shifted to a private hospital. Samantray was shocked, because no pathological investigation had indicated about any damage to the kidneys and he protested. This irked the house surgeons and they started rebuking him in filthy language. An embarrassed and shocked Samantray tried to capture the highly atrocious conduct of the medicos; but obstructed, he went to the unit head and professor of medicine, Dr. Siddharth Das and placed before him his grievances. Dr. Das rushed to the spot and investigated into the matter and as all co-patients of the indoor ward corroborated the allegations raised by Samantray, asked the errant medicos not to work in the same ward. This further irritated the medicos.

When next day, June 15, he had come to attend his father, his co-reporter Debasis had also come with him to meet the professor in his indoor chamber in matter of his ailing mother. Seeing them in the indoor corridor, the miscreant medicos jumped on them and whisked them away into the hostel, where they were kept in wrongful confinement and tortured.

The gory part of the incident is that the IIC of Mangalabag Mr. Shariffudin having come to the spot on SOS message from the affected scribe remained a silent spectator of the torture and willfully neglected to register the FIR filed by them and was later seen entertaining the miscreant medicos in his chamber and registering a parallel FIR filed by them in order to create a confusion in course of criminal justice dispensation.


About 50 scribes, while collectively presenting their Memorandum, informed the ADGP that the same IIC is terrorizing them and urged upon him to investigate into his conduct and discipline him. Besides the two victims of medico-police atrocity, the memorialists included, amongst others, Pradip Sahu,Navdeep Das,Cittaranjan Mishra, Satchidanand Behera, Gopal Mohapatra, Matrudatta Mohanty,Prasanta Mohanty, Jyotiprakash Rao, Bikash Sharma, Abhi Mohanty, Amardev Nayak, Rajkishore Panda, Pratap Chandra Sahoo, Devi Prasanna Khuntia, Rajkishore Mohanty, Ch. Jagannath Patra, Satyajit Mishra, Saroj Kumar Mallik,Ajaya Kumar Das, Pabitra Maharatha, Prasanta Patnaik and Subhas Chandra Pattanayak.

The ADGP has assured to take suitable action in the matter and expeditiously.

SAT confirms the illegality we had exposed: CBI or CI investigation into conduct of the CM and Police Chief must be a Must

Subhas Chandra Pattanayak

With nullification of dismissal of the former Inspector-in-charge (IIC) of Pipili PS by the State Administrative Tribunal on January 17, I have no hesitation in saying that the Chief Minister of Orissa Naveen Patnaik and the Police Chief of Orissa Prakash Mishra had shrewdly collaborated with the Pipili felony of gang rape that ultimately exterminated the victim. Only a CBI or a Commission of Inquiry investigation into why the Director General of Police issued a legally untenable dismissal order to the IIC and why being the Minister-in-charge of Police, the Chief Minister had not objected to that, is now urgent to fix up responsibility as to who of these two top functionaries is guilty to what extent in the Pipili context.

As the DGP dismissed the IIC on January 24, 2012 in stark contravention of the very provision under which the dismissal was ordered, and as Orissa’s political and legal luminaries were conspicuous by their silence on this point, I had to post my views in these pages in public interest, on January 28, 2012, exposing how the dismissal was nothing but official protection given to the IIC with all the scope to get that nullified in appropriate court of law.

The SAT has now nullified the illegal order exactly as I had apprehended.

I had captioned my analysis as “Dismissal of former IIC of Pipili PS is a classic instance of how Naveen is hoodwinking the people”.

I had then written,

“The Director General of Orissa Police has dismissed the former Inspector-In-Charge of Pipili Police Station, Amulya Champatiray, for serious dereliction in duty that has endangered the life of a Dalit girl and ruined her family. The order is being used to hoodwink the people.

The guilt of Champatiray is discernible to naked eyes. So, people are happy over his dismissal. But the dismissal is discernibly farcical, because it is not legal and cannot survive the test of law.

Champatiray had protected the alleged rapists of Pipili by not registering FIR on receipt of the allegation of gang rape and of attempt to murder that has sent the victim into coma.

So, he deserves the severest of punishment and deserves no sympathy.

But, with the Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik as the Police (Home) Minister, his dismissal is crafted so cunningly that despite his offenses, he shall get back his service by challenging the order of dismissal in appropriate Court of law; because no Court will allow rape of the Constitution by any Governmental authority”.

The article is available here.

I am thankful to friends, specifically Prasanta Patnaik, to have supported me at that stage. But their views, despite being most relevant, also got ignored.

Now that the apprehension I then had expressed has come true by the verdict of SAT, which is the High Court in the matter of the government employees, it is necessary for the State to abstain from killing further time in untenable preferences to higher forum of law; because no court of law including the Supreme Court can make an illegal order legal.

After my analysis, were he ignorant about the law and really innocent, the Chief Minister, being the head of the political government, should have asked the DGP to withdraw the faulty order of dismissal and to proceed afresh in the matter by subjecting the IIC to domestic inquiry under necessary environment of natural justice and then to determine the dose of consequential punishment. By not doing this, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik, whose party colleagues are perceived as culprits, had done his best to help the IIC escape the dragnet of law in the court of law.

It is therefore urgent that instead of raising meritless appeals in higher legal forum(s), the Chief Minister should institute an inquiry against himself and his Police Chief to prove them innocent of the conspiracy in that forum. Having instituted a commission of inquiry against himself, former Chief Minister of Orissa late R. N. Singhdeo had created precedence. Naveen should not shy at this precedence in this matter.

Friends and Fans Celebrate as Prasanta Patnaik becomes 72

Subhas Chandra Pattanayak

For the first time, perhaps, a birthday is celebrated in Bhubaneswar in a public place in such a very unique and memorable manner.

The venue is a tea stall in the old Bus Stand which now houses books shops and magazine stalls. It is named Khati by its patrons. Khati stands typically for a meeting place of friends indulging in light talks. But, here, a good many numbers of journalists, authors, social workers, progressive thinkers and radical intellectuals congregate every morning; and, over cups of tea discuss burning issues with alert inputs and renew their camaraderie and commitment, as mutual affection and respect for each other effervesce with humor and liveliness.

Here, this morning, to intimate friends and fans, eminent journalist Prasanta Patnaik emerged a young man of 72. Almost all the daily visitors to the Khati and fans of Patnaik greeted him with wishes for continuance of his ever brilliant innings as sentinel of public interest.

The birthday was formally celebrated by his family in the evening at his residence.

Fanatical Face of Pipili: Rape is Our Prerogative; Action Against That is Not Yours

Subhas Chandra Pattanayak

Orissa Gana Samaj that stresses on CBI inquiry into Pipili gang-rape, is facing police action, as the local police station – ill-famed for having given protection to the rapists – has entertained a FIR against its leaders, alleging, because of them, the rape having attracted national attention, face of Pipili has been blackened.

Pipili Assembly Constituency is in strong grip of ruling party BJD. No official here is expected to act independent of BJD influence.

Here, in the village Arjungoda, on 29 November 2011, a Dalit girl was found lying like a dead body in a paddy field abandoned by perpetrators of gang-rape who had tried to murder her after raping, as her living was dangerous to them, she being the only eye witness to a 2008 rape-cum-murder they had committed; and, assuming that she was dead, they had left her motionless body to be eaten away by scavengers.

But a villager stumbled upon the poor child in that pathetic condition and notified her family.

The shocked family took her to Pipili Hospital for immediate medical intervention and informed the police. None of them came to her rescue.

The girl was then taken to the Capital Hospital at Bhubaneswar, which not only blatantly neglected her, but also to eliminate the angle of rape, probably under political pressure, tried to make out a case of snake bite.

The girl, due to willful wrong treatment, went from senselessness to coma and her reference even to the SCB Medical College failed to fetch any proper medical attention; as if revival of her sense was not in the agenda of the government doctors.

She was discharged from the medical college without any medico-legal investigation even though her family had apprised the medical officer of the gang-rape and attempted murder.

As she was thus left without medical care, in the lap of slow death, in a condition of no attention from the State as police was not taking cognizance of rape and attempted murder, the local media took up the matter.

Surprisingly, the loudmouth bigwig of BJD, Minister (as he then was) Pradip Maharathi, representing Pipili in the Assembly, till then silent, woke up to intimidate the Press for reports of the rape!

The minister’s such unexpected attack on the media made the watchdog of journalistic interest, the Media Unity for Freedom of Press (MUFP) take up the issue and eventually, under its initiative, for the first time in the post-independence history of Orissa, politicians sans their party flags got united with the civil society against the government’s design to suppress this felony, which gave birth to the Orissa Gana Samaj (OGS), with representatives of MUFP – Prasanta Patnaik and Rabi Das – as its joint conveners.

The loudmouth minister had to resign from the cabinet; the Government had to readmit the victim in the medical college afresh and to arrange for her treatment under inspection and instructions from super-specialists and medical scientists from the All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi; and other official organs had to get activated. The Home department had to initiate action against the police inspector who had protected the rapists and the alleged rapists were arrested, notwithstanding howsoever farcical that was.

Had the OGS not taken up the matter, the victim could never have got government attention and the possibility of prosecution against the rapists could never even have developed.

So, the ruling party, its loudmouth leader who was forced to resign in the gang-rape context, its local hoodlums to which segment the alleged rapists belong, are acrimoniously angry upon the OGS.

Now as a FIR has been filed against the representatives of OGS by a man who claims that by exposing the gang-rape, they have embarrassed Pipili in the eyes of the nation, one is inclined to accept that there are elements in Pipili to whom raping a woman is not a crime against the land, but exposing the crime is a crime. This throws light on the liking of the party that rules over Orissa, specifically when such a mischievous FIR has been entertained by the police.

Prasanta Patnaik, Convener of OGS, has demanded that the matter in its entirety be handed over to CBI for an in-depth investigation, as the State Police seems to be in habitual nexus with the criminals.