Subhas Chandra Pattanayak
We had been trying to find the proof of forgery committed by Radhanath Rath and Lingaraj Mishra to grab the Samaja under cover of the Servants of the People Society (SoPS) and how this society has no legitimacy to keep the Samaja under its occupation.
Finally we have got the proof.
In various articles, specifically the one captioned ‘Samaja in Maze of Forgery’ we had juxtaposed Pandit Nilakantha Das’ eye witness accounts with Prof. Sreeram Chandra Dash’s hearsay narration on writing of Gopabamdhu’s Will.
When, according to Pt. Nilakantha, the Will was written by Radhanath Rath to dictation of Gopabandhu, according to the narration of Prof. Dash – admittedly guided by Radhanath Rath, who had refused Prof. Nityananda Satapathy the access to Gopabandhu’s records under his disposal – Lingaraj Mishra had taken the dictation.
This difference was putting a stymie on my conclusion. This stymie is now removed as we have got, after year long pursuit, the original Will of Gopabandhu signed by him and duly probated.
This original Will makes it clear that Lingaraj Mishra, as claimed by Prof. Dash, had written the Will on which Gopabandhu had put his signature. But there is half truth in Prof. Dash’s narration. On juxtaposing Pt. Nilakantha and Prof. Dash together with the body of Gopabandhu’s signed Will, I am sure that Rath had taken dictation of the draft, from which Lingaraj had made the fair copy and Gopabandhu had signed that fair copy even with expansion of his instructions.
I will elaborate.
The draft dictated by Gopabandhu to his employee Radhanath Rath had ended in 8 Paragraphs.
This 8th paragraph was a single-sentenced declaratory paragraph.
It read, “Babu Jagabandhu Singh, Babu Banamali Das, Pandit Nilakantha Das, Babu Harihar Das and Babu Lingaraj Mishra are appointed hereby as executors of this Will”. Below this sentence, Gopabandhu had put his signature.
But thereafter, it occurred to him that he should make some addition, specifically in favor of his second daughter and her children.
So, he asked Lingaraj to write down his extra instructions on the very same fair copy and thus, to his dictation, Lingaraj had written down rest of the Will. In doing so he had tried to insert the dictation between the last line of Para 8 and the signature of Gopabandhu.
But the insertion could not be compressed into the available space between Para 8 and Gopabandhu’s signature.
So, atop the signature, one finds the words:
“The executors are authorized to make cash contribution of rupees five hundred for purchase of land for my second daughter Kirtimayee and the” and beneath the signature, the rest that reads: “Estate shall bear all the educational expenses of this poor second daughter’s children”.
And, then we find Para 9 that Gopabandhu had dictated to Lingaraj on body of the fair copy of the WILL, as otherwise he could not have signed below Para 9 also.
This is why, even though up to Para 8 in the original draft, Gopabandhu had given the dictation to Radhanath Rath, in view of the fair copy produced by Lingaraj from the draft as given to him by Radhanath, and writing of the last portion in addition thereto as dictated to him by Gopabandhu, it is generally accepted that Lingaraj Mishra had written the WILL to dictation of Gopabandhu.
As I have already revealed earlier, Radhanath Rath had shrewdly inserted a sentence in Para 6 for his own benefit before handing over the draft to Lingaraj for fair copy thereof for Gopabandhu’s signature. The sentence was a mismatch and interpolation; but the same had gone into the fair copy by the “easygoing” Lingaraj and had escaped attention of Gopabandhu as he was unable to keep his composure intact under pangs of sharply approaching death. In his letter to Lala Lajpat Rai on 23.12.1927, Gopabandhu had described Lingaraj as a man who was “a bit of easygoing nature” and had “not much initiative and imagination”. Radhanth had taken advantage of this nature of Lingaraj and after interpolating the original draft with his self-centric sentence: “I had a mind to take Babu Radhanath Rath as my assistant under the Servants of the People Society, shortly”, had succeeded in getting the same carried in the fair copy of the Will prepared by Lingaraj. Lest the interpolation gets exposed, he kept draft he had taken dictation of hidden from public gaze and refused Prof. Satapathy access thereto.
Rath, however, had preserved his handwritten draft under his personal custody; because his son Prof. Nilakantha Rath, as admitted in his publication ‘Dasa Apanenka Chithipatra’ had seen the same in his possession, before it went “missing”.
However, though this interpolated self-centric sentence in Para 6 was intact in the probated Will, both of them – Radhanath Rath and Lingaraj Mishra – found that Para 7 thereof would be disadvantageous for them to grab the Samaja.
Therefore, a new draft was made in the hand of Lingaraj amending the Para 7 to suit their nefarious purpose.
This draft got typed on which an affidavit was made before the Sheristadar of the District Court, Cuttack showing the same as true copy of Gopabandhu’s Will.
As I have already shown, Rath was in constant fear that the said affidavit may someday face a challenge. So, he tried to get a ‘Certified True Copy’ of the probated copy of the Will from the District Judge Office, Cuttack, from the text thereof recorded in the register of probate. His purpose was to generate a copy with the language of the forged Will he and Mishra had created with the help of the Sheristadar, to cheat the State and the public. This was to be done by tampering with the text of the probated Will at the typing stage through a gained over typist. And, the gained over typist had done the typing accordingly. But the evil design was foiled when the the officer, who compared the typed copy with the Register before certification, spotted the mischief.
The typist was forced to apply white paint on the altered text, which was exactly the text of the forged Will and to retype thereon the correct text of the original Will. This is its photocopy:-
Though, thus, this attempt to tamper with the original text of the Will failed, the very endeavor to tamper with the text establishes the criminality of Rath as well as SoPS that has never tried to obtain the ‘Certified True Copy’ of the Will from the office of probate or the District Judge Office where the original Will is preserved, but has all along used the forged Will created by Radhanath Rath and Lingaraj Mishra through the Sheristadar of the District Judge, Cuttack.
It is now the responsibility of the State Government to book the SoPS for the offense of using a forged Will of Gopabandhu to occupy the Samaja, the iconic newspaper of Orissa and for having embezzled hundreds of crores of rupees of the Samaja without any authority and legitimacy.
Radhanath Rath and Lingaraj Mishra need be subjected to posthumous prosecution for the crime they have committed.
The State must take over the paper and offer it to its employees to manage it, because it is the workers who have given their labor and life to give the paper its life for 94 years and to give it the shape, stature and strength to enter into 95th year of its publication.