Subhas Chandra Pattanayak
Eminent journalist Prasanta Patnaik has, in his column in Sanchar, exposed such a thread in the matter of economic offenses committed by Prasant Das and his Seashore group of companies that every Oriya who prides in his/her language, writers and scribes, feels ashamed.
Patnaik has exposed how a self-help group of writers and scribes have collectively enhanced credibility of the swindler by accepting big sums of money as their salaries and awards under the banner of a body of letters style Seashore Sahitya Academy that the crook had floated to build up his image of benevolence in the public.
And, he has named the literary acrobats who have contributed to promotion of climate the Seashore group wanted to lure the depositors.
He has named author and orator of international repute Manoj Das, known in Orissa as an ascetic of Pondicherry; and superannuated IAS officer, Rajendra Kishore Panda, known in Orissa as a progressive poet.
He has exposed how the swindler had contrived a method to fetch fame through these men. And, how, under the presidentship of Panda and approval of Das, literary lightweights like college teachers Malabika Roy and Bipin Bihari Nayak and a veterinary doctor Duryodhan Das were teamed up in this dubious body that netted in, in course of time, opinion makers like Journalists Barendrakrushna Dhal, Srimay Kar and Sriram Das to pump in credibility to the censorable outfit by accepting its awards.
When Panda as president of this Academy, allegedly functioned without receiving any money for the service he rendered, Malabika, Bipin and Duryodhan received Rs.60,000 each as monthly salary as its vice-presidents, where as another teacher Narayan Panda also bagged the same amount as Secretary of the said Academy, Patnaik has claimed.
Das accepted a monthly package of a lakh of rupees to act as advisor, he has noted, while questioning his prudence in being associated with such a bubious body against salary of such a stupendous amount.
By active contributing to creation of misleading fame of a crook, who, on the strength of such manufactured fame, has swindled about 500 crores of rupees from the deposits of the lured people, the self-help group of authors and scribes, as named above, has played the nastiest possible mischief against the society, Patnaik has alleged.
Manoj Das and his team in the so-called Academy are making the matter murkier by their surprising silence.
The climate of swindling, cheating, fake fames, and hypocrisy that Naveen Patnaik’s deceptive rule for more than a decade has created, has, it seems, made our men of letters and societal conscience keeper such scraps that they have no courage to stand erect against luring currents.