Orissa Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik is either corrupt or incompetent, as suggested by Gowala scam

Subhas Chandra Pattanayak

The preceding posting was a prelude to this presentation.

Scams in every sphere of administration have engulfed Orissa in the regime of Naveen Patnaik. His stay in power is also based on ‘election scam’ that he executes by stupefying the people under overwhelming impact of all the official welfare programs named after his father Biju. Gullible people fail to understand the difference between welfare projects named after Biju and the political party named also after Biju, and mistake the welfare programs as gifts of Biju Janata Dal, and this mistake helps the BJD win the elections. Naveen is in power for 15 years despite all his misrule because of this ‘election scam’.

Audits and Courts have stripped his government layer by layer for corruption and incompetency, embezzlements and such other offenses signifying scams of severe nature. State Crime Branch, State Vigilance, Central Bureau of Investigations, and various Judicial Inquiry Commissions are busy in investigations into various scams perpetrated in Naveen’s regime.

However, I am going to focus in this presentation on another scam that severely endangers human health and living environment; but continues unabated.

This not-yet-investigated scam may be called by us as ‘Gowala scam of Bhubaneswar’. This scam is suggestive of how Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik is either corrupt or incompetent, crying for immediate judicial investigation.

At the moment, the scam possibly is of Rs. 16,000,000/- per month, because, according to a source in GA department, around 4000 milkmen are paying Rs.4,000/- each as unofficial fees against government plots they have encroached in prime locations.

Every milkman (gowala in Supreme Court’s language) knows the collection agent of his locality and faithfully pays the payola to him every month. The ruling party gets the benefit and manages the mandarins so as not to implement the Municipal Corporation Act, 2003, which bans cow keeping in the capital city.

Most secured

This amount may be more or less. My source may be right or wrong. But, it is certain that, the milkmen are the most secured encroachers of prime plots in Bhubaneswar, more secured than even the present President of Orissa branch of BJP and former urban development minister K.V.Sighdeo, ill-famed for encroachment of government land in front of the Governor’s house.

To protect these milkmen, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik has de facto killed the law his government had enacted in 2003.

I have discussed this phenomenon earlier and will repeat the discussion in this presentation to provoke the Chief Minister to place before the public his explanation, if any, over his government’s criminal silence, despite the the Supreme Court having fully endorsed the said Law in 2006, mandating the government to immediately oust the milkmen from Bhubaneswar and its periphery.

The 2003 Act and the Supreme Court

To save the city’s inhabitants and visitors from mosquito menace and from pernicious pollution, Orissa Legislature had made provisions in the Orissa Municipal Corporation Act, 2003 that had stipulated that cowsheds must stand obliterated within the limits of Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation (BMC) with immediate effect.

Orissa Milk Producers Association had moved the Orissa High Court against this new Law praying simultaneously that the Government be asked to rehabilitate them in suitable places in the city before eviction and not to impose prohibition on running of cowsheds. Orissa High Court rejected their plea.

They went to the Supreme Court of India against the order of the High Court. There they also failed.

The Supreme Court, in deciding Civil Appeal No.940 of 2006 arising out of SLP (C) Nos. 16362-16363 of 2004, made it absolutely clear that the milkmen must be evicted from the limits of BMC and must not be rehabilitated anywhere in the City and its periphery, as “Right to environment being a fundamental right, it is the duty of the State to make it sure that people get a pollution free surrounding”.

The milkmen had pleaded that the present Chief Minister’s father had assured them with rehabilitation and hence they should be given plots in substitute to run their business. Rejecting this plea, the Supreme Court had declared, “In view of the 2003 Act, even the doctrine of Promissory Estoppels will have no application”.

It had further ordered that the milkmen cannot even be allowed to put up cowsheds in villages bordering Bhubaneswar. “As by reason of the Orissa Municipal Corporation Act, within the periphery of the town, dairies or cowsheds cannot be maintained, the State cannot be entitled to adhere to its earlier plan of rehabilitating them in villages mentioned therein”, the Supreme Court had said while observing, “Not only filth, stench and unhealthy places have to be eliminated, but the (town planning) would be such that it helps in achieving family values, youth values, seclusion and clean air to make the locality a better place to live”

Thus the Supreme Court has not only rejected the plea of milkmen to have cow-buffalo-swine-sheds in Bhubaneswar, but also has fortified the provisions laid down under Sections 409, 543 and 548 of The Orissa Municipal Corporation Act, 2003, which prohibit keeping animals of cow category anywhere within and around the city limits.

The judgment delivered on February 2, 2006 is published in (2006) 3 Supreme Court Cases 229.

So, there was no legal problem at all over demolition of cowsheds and eviction of milkmen with their herds of animals to free the city from stench and flies and mosquitoes and malaria and filariasis and threats of cancer and tuberculosis.(ORISSA MATTERS, January 7, 2009).

But, for reasons best known to the Chief Minister, the milkmen, instead of getting evicted, are protected.

The following is a sample picture of demolition of roadside kiosks run by unemployed persons in pursuit of livelihood in the Unit 9 area of Bhubaneswar on October 30.

demolition of road side shops on 20.10.14

BMC has demolished many such kiosks of unemployed people trying to eke out a living. Another instance captured by camera in 2008:

demolition of shops

It has demolished tiny temples established by people for social utility. Some instances as caught in camera:

demolition of temple_twodemolition of temple 4demolition of temple_one

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

It has used state terror in demolishing the slums where abjectly poor migrant laborers live braving inhabitable conditions, so that they can live for a day. The picture below presents how the evicted poor workers are helpless before the uniformed muscles of the State.

demolition of slum 2

Shameful, yet real
It is shameful for the Republic of India that, when there was no instance of an Indian selling himself/herself in a market for a day’s bread during the Britishraj, Bhubaneswar is having several laborer-markets, called ‘Mulia hat’ where every morning daily laborers (Mulia) gather to sell themselves for money. Only a few of them get a day’s engagement, many return resigned to fate.
The picture below is of one such Mulia Hats, where slum dwellers gather daily for selling themselves to anybody who can engage them in work for a day.Mulia Hat 1

 

In the labyrinth of misrule

Naveen Patnaik has misruled the State to such severe shrinkage of avenues of livelihood that Dadan (migration of laborers from Orissa to other States in search of work) is in constant rise. Dadan often ends in death of the worker due to non-payment of wages, slow starvation, and torture by the employer beyond endurance and resultant suicides. Whosoever fails to migrate to other states, tries his/her luck in the ‘Mulia Hat’ at Bhubaneswar. The picture shows this sordid reality.

These helpless people, resigned to fate, live in slums. Instead of giving them agricultural land, which, as excellent workers, they can use to earn their bread, the Naveen Patnaik government has been sacrificing thousands of acres of land at the altar of avarice of the ultra high rich people – mostly non-Oriyas – for industry and commercial hubs.

demolition of slum_oneWhen so generous to the rich, he is demolishing slums after slums, as if poor people have no right to earn their livelihood at Bhubaneswar. More menacing is the cruelty shown in demolishing their slums. The picture below carries a sample of this cruelty.

But when demolitions of slums, of self-employment kiosks, of temples etcetera is executed without any mercy for the affected, the milkmen are the only people who never face any eviction from encroached prime plots in the heart of the City.

In the preceding article of October 29 that was a prelude to this presentation, a particular location has been highlighted with relevant pictures for ready reference. I have given in that posting the location map for any functionary or conscious citizen to reach there and see what havoc is being played upon the living environment.

Here below are some more pictures that would show how the capital city of Orissa has been infested with illegal cowsheds and unrestrained cattle.

The milkmen leave their cattle roam freely and rest on the road that causes severe disadvantage to vehicular traffic, particularly in the night. A sample picture may suffice in understanding the threat to human safety.

Threat to life on the road

cows on the road 1

cows on the road 3

 

 

 

 

The menace is widespread.

gowala menace 1

The above picture is just a sample of illegal cow-keeping in another location in Bhubaneswar.

And, how is city environment affected by these illegal cowsheds?

3 ft high cow dung on the road, the cow shed behind the green fense4 to 5 ft high heap of cow dung on western main road to Capital Hospital

The above two pictures show, 3 to 4 ft high mount of cow dung has been heaped on a main road. And it has engulfed at least 5 to 6 ft of the road. Because of flowing cow dung and urine mixture, nearby slum houses are also very severely affected, as the picture below shows.

flow of cow dung on western main road to Capital Hospital

Severe danger to human health

As the corrupt government has protected this menacing danger to human health, the city of Bhubaneswar has become a den of nitrous oxide, methane and other greenhouse gases as well as noxious stinks produced by these illegal cowsheds.

It is established that ammonia (NH3) evaporating from cow dung and urine play havoc with environment. An adult cow emits 80 to 110 kilograms of methane gas over its lifetime. Four thousand illegal cowsheds in Bhubaneswar harbor at least 4,00,000 adult cows at the rate of 100 per shed in the average. So, one fears, Bubaneswar is forced to face 400, 000, 00 kg methane gas menace, because Naveen Patnaik’s government is in nexus with the milkmen.

The whole city is under layers of arsenic gas generated by burning of cow dung cakes by the milkmen for cooking and for repelling mosquitoes from their cowsheds and attached huts where they live. Arsenic is slow-poisoning the people residing near the cowsheds and specifically, the children. Cases of TB, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Diseases and Pneumonia, Lung Cancer are increasingly hitting the Bhubaneswar Hospitals. Malaria, Filarial infection, Dengu and such other diseases caused by mosquitoes, various allergies, skin diseases, and cardiac problems are in the rise in the obstinately unhygienic environment the milkmen have created.

Most beneficial Act most brazenly killed

To save Bhubaneswar from this monstrous danger, the Assembly had laid down under Sections 409, 543 and 548 of The Orissa Municipal Corporation Act, 2003 that the city must be immediately made free of Milkmen. Their association, as already shown supra, had challenged it up to the Supreme Court and failed.

As my sources say, the milkmen were paying Rs.300/- as protection money to GA department Officials which after enactment of the Act of 2003 had reached Rs.2000/- per cowshed. After the Supreme Court rejected the milkmen’s case and fully endorsed the Act of 2003, giving a direction to the State government to oust the milkmen forthwith from the city limits and periphery of Bhubaneswar, the protection money has been increased from Rs.2000/- to Rs.4000/- well within the knowledge of the Chief Minister.

If  Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik is not involved with this scam, he should come forward to clear the doubts by explaining as to why his administration has not taken any step to demolish the cowsheds and to evict the cowherds and to free the government plots from their encroachments and to save Bhubaneswar from pollution, from the hazards of nitrous gases, from arsenic poison, from ammonia, from filth of cow dung and stench and from abnormal rise of temperature and collapse of its habitable climate under impact thereof.

The most beneficial Act has been most brazenly killed by Naveen Patnaik’s government. It is time, the Supreme Court should ask the CBI or appoint a special Commission to conduct an in-depth investigation into why the State Government has slept over its order passed in Civil Appeal No.940 of 2006 arising out of SLP (C) Nos. 16362-16363 of 2004, published in (2006) 3 Supreme Court Cases 229.

We may remind the Supreme Court that in the said order it had mandated that “Right to environment being a fundamental right it is the duty of the State to make it sure that people get a pollution free surrounding”.

We may remind the Supreme Court that in the said order, it had further said that. “Not only filth, stench and unhealthy places have to be eliminated, but the (town planning) would be such that it helps in achieving family values, youth values, seclusion and clean air to make the locality a better place to live”.

The pictures of filth we have given in this posting, as captured with the camera. We expect that the Supreme Court would appreciate that no camera can capture the stench.

The ‘Gowala scam of Bhubaneswar’ strongly suggests that Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik is either corrupt or incompetent.

But the correct picture can come out only if the Supreme Court asks the CBI or appoint a Special Commission to investigate and report as to why the Orissa Government has kept its own Law – The Orissa Municipal Corporation Act 2003 – inoperative in matter of the milkmen and has rendered the above noted order of the Supreme Court inconsequential so far.

We do not expect that the Supreme Court shall fail to ensure that its orders are honored and implemented by a State Government.

A prelude to a Scam to be Discussed

Subhas Chandra Pattanayak
This posting is a prelude to a scam to be discussed in my next article.

The posting is positioned on a prime plot of Bhubaneswar that the location map furnished below highlights.

location of illegal cowshed

A few meters away from the Raj Bhawan (Orissa Governors official residence) on the north-western side and Sachivalaya (State Secretariat) on the north side), nearby VVIP/VIP bungalows where ministers to top officials stay, on the second street behind Bhubaneswar Club, and the back street of Bhubaneswar Kala Kendra, is this location where a gowala (milkman) has encroached about half an acre government land operating a huge illegal dairy there to the total detriment of health of the local residents since October 2004. Another gowala had started a small size dairy there which he dismantled in June 2004 due perhaps to objections raised before the Director of Estates. The area remained vacant for a few months till this encroacher stepped in. Below is the picture of the dairy under the present operator taken on 15 November 2004.

gowala nenace 2

This was then many meters distant from where the Autopsy Rd was crossing the Kala Kendra Rd and the cowsheds of the gowala were standing on the 3rd street behind Bhubaneswar Club. He was drying cow dung cakes on the uneven open space lying between the cowshed and Kala Kendra road. The following picture shows the distance of the cowshed from the Kala Kendra Rd and Autopsy Rd crossing.

gowala menace 4

The man seen walking towards the cowshed is former Additional Director of Estates. The picture was taken in the morning on 18 April 2008. On the very same day, Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation had started dumping collected debris on this uneven plot to make it level for the gowala to use. The picture below shows how the gowala had started drying dung cakes on unloaded heaps of the debris.

gowala menace 3

And then the encroachment expanded. The gowala having encroached the left side of the Kala Kendra Road from the east, crossed the same to use its right side for drying the dung cakes.

cowshed-4

The picture below was taken this morning. It shows how it has reached the Kala Kendra Road within these years.

as on 29.10.14

And, see below, how free passage on the road has been blocked by high heaps of cow dung.

Road blocked by heap of cow dung 1

This is only one instance. The entire city of Bhubaneswar is afflicted with health hazard by running of such cowsheds by milkmen on encroached prime government plots, despite the Municipal Corporation Act 2003 having banned keeping of cows and buffaloes, goats and sheep.

I will discuss the issue in my next posting.

Court orders Police to register case against former Judicial Officer

Subhas Chandra Pattanayak

It is not always that a court orders the Police to register a cognizable offence case against a former judicial officer. But retired officer of Orissa Judicial Service C.R.Dash is one such person against whom the Sub-Divisional Judicial Magistrate (S), Cuttack, in ICC 1001/13, has ordered the Police to take cognizance and register the FIR within 24 hours, which had been gathering dust in the Cantonment Police Station, Cuttack since 3.12.2012.

Samaja gate 1Servants of the People Society, which has illegally occupied the Samaja by using a forged will of Gopabandhu, has transformed the iconic newspaper of Orissa into a crime center, tormenting loyal employees of the newspaper with false and fabricated cases and has resorted to blatant unfair labor practices to keep the workforce intimidated. Labor officials, under pressure from the Chief Minister have sat mum when the illegal management has been trying to destroy the Trade Union of the employees – the Utkalmani Newspaper Employees Association (UNEA).

In one such case against the President of UNEA, the said illegal occupiers of the Samaja had appointed a retired Judicial Officer namely C.R.Dash as domestic enquiry officer and had tactfully dragged in a low-paid Machine Helper namely Surendra Behera into where the same officer was holding enquiry into allegations against the President of the Union, Sri Deviprasanna Nayak, on 3.12. 2012 and had forced to depose in their favor as a management witness.

Dash was appointed the enquiry officer on recommendation of Niranjan Rath, on whose allegation the so-called domestic enquiry had been instituted.

He asked Behera to sign on a written, predated document, which under condition of alarm the poor worker had to comply with. The document was dated 1 .12.2012. Dash did not disclose what it was, but disallowed him to write the date under his signature. On the other hand, he prompted Behera to corroborate the management allegations against Nayak. Behera refused to give any false and prompted deposition. But Dash did not bother. He went on dictating the typist the deposition, which Behera had never made and forced him to sit mum till the dictation was over and to sign the typed sheet, after which only he can leave the enquiry hall. Behera panicked, but kept quiet. As the guard grew little inattentive, he rushed out of the room and went to the Cantonment Police Station and filed FIR against the malicious conduct of the Enquiry Officer. In the FIR he apprehended that he may be forced by the Assistant H.R.Manager to sign the paper that the EO had dictated when he should be reporting on normal duty in the night shift. He wanted protection and action against the EO and the A.H.R.M. for criminal conspiracy and act of intimidation.

The corrupt and pressurized police inspector-in-charge did not register the FIR, despite the poor workman running to the P.S. several times. He had to, finally, knock the door of justice seeking direction to the police to take cognizance of the reported offense.

In taking up the case, the S.D.J.M. (S), Cuttack, has observed in his order dated 14.10.14 that, “The alleged offences are cognizable in nature. Hence, I feel it proper, in the interest of justice, that there will be an investigation by the police with regard to the allegation leveled in the complaint”.

And, as such, he has issued orders U/S 156(3), CrPC to the IIC, Cantonment Police Station “to register the complaint petition within 24 hours of receipt of the order and to report compliance promptly”.

And, consequently on 18.10.2014, Behera’s complaint has been registered as FIR No.83 setting on motion Sections 341/294/506/465/468/469 and 34 of Indian Penal Code.

Water Resources Dept is in CM’s hand; Irrigation Project pushed into Ruin

Subhas Chandra Pattanayak
Deviprasanna on the dam Hilly Orissa is dependent on rain for cultivation. The only solace is availability of water in some locations by jointing two adjoining hills by dams. Dadara Ghati Dam on river Gambharia Nallah in Dhenkanal District is one such irrigation project that I had an opportunity to visit along with distinguished editorialist Deviprasanna Nayak at the end of summer this year.

Ever since water resources department has fallen in the hands of Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik this project is lying abandoned. It is pushed into utter ruin due to total lack of maintenance and care.

Pictures will say.

This is the abandoned dam -

the abandoned dam Its junked Board of Silent Feature is indicative of what utter negligence the project is subjected to. This is the Board – Junked board of silent feature   Its office is abandoned. The pictures below would show its pathetic condition. abandoned officeAbandoned office, ruined entrance   Its operation is abandoned. abandoned operation ABANDONED OPERATION 2   It is not in use for years. Nobody takes its care. No attention is paid to its maintenance. Not in use for years   As I stand under the dam, to my left on the State Highway, preferrers of shorter routes from coastal to western Orissa and vice versa are seen speeding away in their vehicles. Ah! If someone could come and see how this great irrigation asset is crying for attention! SCP

Orissa in Quagmire of AIDS; High Court Ruling and Minister’s Order Rot under Red Tapes!

Subhas Chandra Pattanayak
aids iconOrissa is in Quagmire of AIDS. The Government has not yet studied to what extent it has spread in the State. But the figure must be alarmingly high as the State has failed to stop supply of infected blood through the Blood Banks, despite specific direction of the High Court of Orissa, that had even punished the State Government with Rs.3 lakhs to be paid as compensation in a case where it was established beyond doubts that a boy of only 17 months of age had been infected with this dreaded disease consequent upon receiving transfusion of infected blood supplied by Government Blood Bank, BMC Hospital, Bhubaneswar, on an operation table. The Blood Bank had supplied screened blood; but the virus had escaped detection, as the ELISA method used for screening is not advanced enough to detect HIV in the grey zone or window period.

On elaborate study and research, the High Court of Orissa had ruled in W.P.(C) No.13441 of 2009 on 28 July 2011 that PCR NAT method be used in all the Blood Banks to stop supply of contaminated blood to patients, as had happened to the child in the instant case. Mandarins of Health Department, instead of implementing this Order, have kept this judgment subjected to their own judgment!
The following three articles, out of a lot earlier published in these pages, would be of help in understanding the sad phenomenon and to see how the Government of Orissa has criminally neglected the most calling cause of health in the State and how its Health Minister’s assurance to the Assembly to implement the remedial method – NAT, as directed by the High Court, has been rotting under the red tapes of bureaucracy.

The articles are:

1. Shocking Reality: AIDS Being Aided by Government of Orissa,
2. AIDS: A Coterie of Officers use Tricks of Subterfuge against the High Court Order and,
3. ORISSA MATTERS Exposed a Malady that reached a Remedy, thanks to Prasad Harichandan

On relying upon the Minister’s announcement in the Assembly, people had believed that they would soon be saved from threat of Transfusion Transmitted Infections like AIDS. But the Minister’s announcement stayed inconsequential because of political timidity.

Political Timidity

Prasad Harichandan of the Congress party was the mover of the adjournment motion, in reply to which Health Minister Dr. Damodar Raut had announced to adopt NAT for blood screening. Had the announcement been executed, the credit for its implementation might have also gone to the mover of the motion Mr. Harichandan. So it was abandoned. Health Minister Dr. Raut, who had given the assurance to the Assembly to implement the High Court order in phased manner, till his last day in the department, did not give the necessary thrust to implementation of his own announcement on NAT in the Assembly.

New Health Minister’s query

After Election-2014, a new Minister in Mr. Atanu Sabyasachi Nayak took over the charge of Health. A young, energetic, workaholic person, he immediately addressed himself to pending tasks. And, thus he located how the department has slept over the High Court Judgment as well as the assurance given by the Government to the Assembly for adoption of NAT to stop infected blood flowing into unsuspecting patients.

He sent the following “Note” to the Secretary.

ASNayak to S.H.Note Sheet
UOI No. 23/MSHFW, I&PR
Date 19.9.2014
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 in one PIL case filed before it, had passed an order for earliest implementation of NAT. The then Hon’ble Minister, Health and Family Welfare, Odisha had assured on the floor of the house for implementation of NAT in phased manner while answering an adjournment motion on the subject on 01.09.2012. A technical committee constituted by the Government had visited two States i.e. Karnataka & Uttar Pradesh and inspected various centers where NAT was implemented and had given their report.
I am told that SBTC was directed to go ahead for implementation of the project. The major procedure involving financial & technical formalities are also over. The technical expert committee has also given its views on the request of proposals received.
It is a matter of concern why this 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/-
Atanu
16.9.14
Minister of State (Ind), Health & F.W, I&PR, Odisha

In response to the Minister’s note, the Health Secretary informed him on 20 September 2014 that, “A meeting in this connection was scheduled to 15.09.2014 which could not be held due to sudden demise of the mother of the Director, State Blood Transfusion Council. The meeting has been rescheduled for 29.09.2014”.

Secretary acts a judge over the judgment

What happened on September 29? The meeting was held under chairmanship of the Secretary of Health. But it was nothing but an exercise of equivocations, and attempts to stymie the implementation. And, more intriguingly, it was a game of subjecting the judgment of the High Court to judgment of the Secretary. The Minister should take serious note of it.

Secretary doesn’t bother about Minister’s query

As would be seen from the Minister’s note sheet, he had asked, “Why this important decision to implement the direction of Hon’ble High Court has not been operationalized till date” And, he had called for “a detail report” on the delay and had directed to convey a meeting “as early as possible to expedite the process”.

But, instead of complying with the absolutely appropriate orders of the Minister, the mandarins invented tricks to delay the process.
I quote from the minutes:
After thorough discussion, the following decisions were taken:
i. The fact sheet on NAT needs be prepared and submitted;
ii. The letter may be issued to NAT technology user States to get feedback on NAT technology after implementation of NAT, such as performance of NAT system, transport logistics, review mechanism along with grievance redress mechanism during failure of equipment.

Playing over judicial wisdom

The “fact sheet on NAT” is already with the department, as otherwise, the decision could not have been taken to adopt NAT and call for Tenders. Why then this decision at Para- i? Moreover, the High Court has analyzed the essential necessity of NAT to stop supplying HIV infected blood to unsuspecting patients. The government has only one option; i.e. implementation of the High Court Order.

Where from the mandarins get the mandate to sit in judgment over the judgment of the High Court?

When the bureaucratic decision quoted above in Para- i is nothing but playing over the judicial wisdom of the High Court, the decision at Para- ii is indicative of how casually the mandarins are treating the issue of AIDS that they generate by supplying contaminated blood to the patients on operation tables or for serious diseases that require regular and frequent blood transfusion like Thalassemia, Sickle Cell etcetera.

Luxury of equivocations

The quoted decision at Para-ii above says, “Letter may be issued to NAT technology user States to get feedback on NAT technology after implementation of NAT”. They shall send letters to other States to get feedback on NAT! What a great design to waste time!

After the High Court judgment, the Secretary of the Health Department had deputed a high-level committee of experts to collect physical feedback from States where NAT is in use and the Expert Committee’s report, strongly recommending adoption of this advanced technology to ensure supply of safe blood, is very much in the records of the department. This has also been reflected in the Minister’s note quoted supra. So, why again the decision to send letters to the same States for feedback? Does replacement of a Secretary with a new incumbent renders earlier obtained feedback useless?

Moreover, why this, when the only option left to the Secretary is implementation of the ruling of the High Court in the 2009 case? And the only duty of the Secretary is to tell the Minister as to why the High Court Ruling has not been implemented.

The minutes of the September 29 meeting is more indicative of confusion the bureaucracy is creating. As for example, item b under Para iii wants the firm to give “Tax Details”. The tender notice issued by the department, to which firms have responded, itself has stipulated in its ‘Format’ that the “rate quoted should include all applicable taxes except Odisha VAT, which would be paid as applicable”.

When the respondents to this notice are bound by the ‘Format’ beyond which they cannot go, why this confusion is created in matter of ‘Tax details’? Obviously, the Secretary does not want implementation of the High Court Order and therefore, unnecessary hurdles are created in provision of funds for the scheme in supplementary budget.

To escape blame, a decision has been noted under Para-v, which states, “To roll out the NAT facility in whole State, the tentative budget requirement will be around Rs.23.7 crores. But as per decision, in first phase total budget, requirement was projected at Rs.9.48 crores (as per EFC decision). Thus provision in supplementary budget will have to be made based on requirements”.

This note, juxtaposed with Para-iv that says, “Policy decision should be chalked out”, read with the mischief as discussed in context of Paras- i, ii and iii above, makes it clear that either the bureaucracy is infested with elements that need greasing of palms to make the matter move or the Secretary is too stubborn to yield to orders of the High Court and the Minister. Be it whatever, it is clear that the mandarins in Health Department are not paying attention to the urgency of stopping supply of AIDS generating contaminated blood from Blood Banks in the State.

Health Secretary makes a farce of EFC

The situation is horrific when the meetings taken by the Health Secretary do not bother about soundness of the minutes of the Expenditure Finance Committee (EFC) held as far back as on 13 December 2013.

“After going through the relevant documents of the Indian Council of Medical research (ICMR) Studies and other related studies papers & documents”, this authoritative body, in its decision No.1 had “approved” the “proposal submitted by the Health and Family welfare Department for implementation of NAT PCR testing method in Blood Banks in the State”. Further “It is decided to be implemented in the three Medical Colleges and Hospitals of the State”, said its 2nd resolution. The Health department has made a farce of this approval of the EFC.

Manners of the mandarins

The following events may help us understand how hazardous to human health are the manners of the mandarins in the Department of Health in Orissa -
1. The High Court of Orissa, shocked to see a 17 month old boy in AIDS by taking blood on the operation table supplied by a Blood Bank of Bhubaneswar, had issued mandatory direction on 28 July 2011 to the State Government to immediately adopt NAT method for blood screening, so as to eliminate every chance for HIV virus escaping detection within window period.

2. The Minister of Health, in replying an adjournment motion on 1 September 2012 on the issue of non-implementation of the High Court ruling, declared in the House that the Government would implement the Order in phased manner with utmost quickness.

3. Following the Minister’s announcement, an expert committee was sent to various States that use NAT method for field study and feedback and the said Committee submitted its report recommending NAT as the most efficient method for ensuring safe blood to the patients that led the Health Department to arrive at a decision to adopt NAT.

4. The Finance Department accorded necessary approval vide the EFC resolution on 13 December 2013.

5. Request of Proposal was issued through ads on 20 February 2014 and offers obtained and firms selected under stipulations laid down by the department.

6. Despite this when the High Court order of 28 July 2011 and the Minister’s announcement of 1 September 2013 were not implemented, despite EFC approval on 13 December 2013 till 15 September 2014, the new Health Minister, in his notes dated 16 September 2014 wanted to know from the Secretary the reasons thereof and asked the Secretary to call a meeting to ascertain who caused the delay and “as early as possible to expedite the process”.

But, instead of honoring the Minister, the Secretary has taken all steps to delay the process!

This is when the State is in the quagmire of AIDS.

Sad

The report is old, but certainly most relevant

Subhas Chandra Pattanayak

Alok Jena, on whose petition the Supreme Court of India has promulgated the current CBI investigation into chit fund felony, has surprised us with his stout suspicion that the Special Director of CBI Anil Kumar Sinha, who is in charge of the investigation, has been trying to derail the inquiry. His press note reveals that Sinha is eager to become the CBI Director and that’s why he wants the ongoing chit fund inquiry go haywire.

Why should Sinha derail the Orissa enquiry if he is interested in acquiring the CBI top post? How can Orissa politicians/IAS and IPS officers of Orissa who figure in course of the current investigation, even Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik to whom needle of suspicion is pointing in increasing speed, influence the central government for elevation of Sinha, if the investigation really gets derailed?

As we were searching for a credible answer, we get a clue. If the inquiry is not derailed, the black face of some of the close associates of Prime Minister Narendra Modi may be unveiled. So, ultimately BJP is to be pleased, if the Orissa Inquiry is derailed by Sinha.

In these pages our stress has been repeatedly laid on the necessity of investigation into involvement of Justice Laxmikant Mohapatra in obliging chit fund cheat Pradip Sethy, which the CBI has not yet done. It has booked former Advocate General Asok Mohanty in matter of a residential plot, whereas the offense centering that particular plot begins with Justice Mohapatra. If the CBI reaches Mohapatra, it may also reach the crux of illegalities resorted to in allocation of plots from discretionary quota to dozens of Judges and powerful functionaries by sheer misuse of position mostly by two persons who were and are top leaders of BJP in Orissa, one, even now heading it. It may come to light, how Modi’s cabinet colleague from Orissa Jewel Oram has benefited from the same sort of illegalities too.

A friend has preferred a video to me in matter of a different posting. Even as I have already used the same, I deem it proper to use it here, because it provides a clue to why the BJP government in the center may be pleased with Sinha if, as suspected by Jena, the ongoing CBI enquiry in Orissa is derailed. The video shows how BJP leaders, when holding cabinet berths as Urban Development Ministers, have misused discretionary quota. We suspect, they have granted this favor to certain judges to buy protection in cases they were involved; and to some others under backhanders, which can only be defined by a faithful CBI, if its enquiry is not derailed.

The report is old; but is certainly most relevant.

Intimidated Samaja Staff sign on Plain Papers: State is Silent!

Subhas Chandra Pattanayak

THE SAMAJA is Orissa’s iconic newspaper and belongs to people of Orissa. It was created by five most beloved leaders of the State – famous as Panchasakha of Satyavadi – for imparting political education to the people fighting for reconstruction of their divided motherland and emancipation. Utkalmani Pandit Gopabandhu Das was its co-founder and was its forefront editor.

As we have shown earlier, a low-paid shrewd servant of Gopabandhu – Radhanath Rath and an associate of the great leader, whom, despite his mental dullness he had sponsored to Politics – Lingaraj Mishra – had betrayed Gopabandhu and had forged his Will after the original was probated and discarding the probated Will, had used the forged one in all offices to grab the Samaja under cover of Servants of the People Society.

This Society, after death of these two miscreants, has seized the Samaja in its entirety and has been looting its revenue.

Like vultures fight amongst themselves over a carcass, members of this Society are in fight against each other to grab whatever benefit they can and they have reduced the Samaja premises to their internecine battle ground.

Lest the workers wake up against this, they have resorted to blatant unfair practices, have subjected the Union leaders to concocted cases, have illegally dismissed active members of the Union, pushed employees into enforced idleness and as per a press note issued by the Union, have taken signatures of some employees in plain papers by intimidating them. This is happening, because, the State Government never act against illegalities of SoPS.

The press note is in Oriya script and as this posting is addressed to people of Orissa, we give below the same for their perusal.

PN 1PN 2PN 3PN 4

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