Subhas Chandra Pattanayak


Buddhist scripture Dammapada had within its fold very excellent sculptors who had built the world famous Konark temple for worship of Buddha in his clan name Aditya or Surya, the Sun, depicting together the valor of Kama-Vajrayani emperor Langula Narasimha Dev and the socio-philosophic concept of sexual union propounded by the immortal Sahajayani poet Sri Jaya Dev.

Concussed to the core by the rise of the Sahaja philosophy, agents of brahminism in post Langula Narasmha era not only destroyed Konark but also cooked up legends to replace Dhammapada with Dharmapada, a name cunningly coined for a 12 year old child whom the people of later generation were made to believe to be the son of the head sculptor Bishu Maharana, who, when 1200 of his fellow sculptors had failed, attracting thereby wrath of the emperor, to set up the top of the temple, had come to their rescue by completing the work overnight.

Forget for the time being the historical reality and accept the legend. Accept that the 12 year old son of Bisu Maharana, Dharmapada, had succeeded in setting up the top of Konark when others had failed. What happened to him? How did the legend maker treat this matchless child?

Legend says us that he was killed. The community of sculptors, who obviously developed inferiority complex, collectively decided that Dharmapada should die. The boy’s father Bishu Maharana being their leader, they asked him to determine as to with whom he should stand: with the community of sculptors or with the boy, who had proved that he was more efficient than others in the community. The father stood with the community and collectively they killed the gifted genius who was made to jump into the sea from the top of the temple that he alone had been able to set.

Orissa’s Child Welfare Minister Ms. Pramila Mallik, her Chief Naveen Patnaik and a bunch of non-Oriya people, envious of Orissa’s fame, strengthened by hypocrites shedding meretricious tears for Buddhia, the four years two months old wonder, who hailing from a Bhubaneswar slum has defeated all odds to carve out a berth for himself in the Limca Book of Records as the world’s best youngest marathon runner, on ground of health of the child, reminds us of how Dharmapada was eliminated by people suffering from inferiority complex. <img src=”budh2.jpg

Buddhia has, no doubt, made many people develop inferiority complex. After he made the mark to occupy a place in Limca Book of Records as the best youngest marathon runner of the world, those who are unable to tolerate the slum boy’s beaming fame have started putting stymies on his way in the guise of concern for his health. I am inclined to arrive at such a conclusion because of the fact that ever since Buddhia has attracted public attention as a marathon runner, none of these fellows has come forward to extend any help in real term to his wellbeing.

Minister for Women and Child welfare Ms. Mallik had baffled people by hurling obnoxious allegations against Mr. Biranchi Das, the man behind Buddhia’s epoch making success, when the boy had started catching media attention. She is now the most vociferous advocate of debarment of Buddhia from further use of his prowess in the way that has been done so far.

She is using her authority as a Minister to ban marathon running for Buddhia. She cannot say that she had not known of the marathon run program that bagged for him the coveted position in the Limca Book of Records. If such a run was sure to harm the boy according to her perception, why was she shy of stopping the event? Why didn’t she come forward to intervene as the Minister before the program proceeded? Was she wishing some harm to happen to the boy so that she could take advantage of that to prey upon Das? What was her real motive? Why did she choose to remain a silent spectator before the marathon run and why has she risen up now? These are questions that crave answers from Ms. Mallik.
<img src=”BUDHIA SINGH11
Why she is angry with Das is not public knowledge. But the question that hunts the pubic is: is she really concern with physical wellbeing of the slum dweller boy?

There is no record available to show us that she has saved slum children from the wretched helplessness and exploitation.

Everyday one can see slum children of Bhubaneswar straying on the conservancy lanes behind official quarters, including that of Ms. Mallik, in desperate search for rags to retain their lives. Has Ms. Mallik ever taken steps to rehabilitate any of them? Let her give us a name and we shall find out the truth. If not for any of slum dwelling children she has concentrated her concern, why for Buddhia? That too, in a style that is enough to destabilize the boy’s self-confidence?

If she is really worried over Buddhia’s health why has she never visited Buddhia at his cottage or at his training center so far to see as to how best could he be nurtured?

As the child welfare Minister it would have been proper on her part to visit Buddhia the moment his athletic prowess hit the headlines and to collaborate with his mentor to guide the boy in a better way to best utilize his prowess. She has never done this. Therefore, I am inclined to suspect that Ms. Mallik is not genuinely interested in Buddhia’s wellbeing. She being a political person, I am inclined to look at its political angle.

Only a few days ago, Buddhia was at the center of a politically hot matter that had stirred the entire State. Electronic media major ETV staged a competition for selection of a person as PRIYA ORIYA (Dear Oriya). Even though the exercise was stage-managed, no direct voter could ignore Buddhia.

The boy had become so much popular that he was elected by the direct voters to the final round of the competition where Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik was bracketed with him.

The final round of competition was carried out through SMS leading to declaration of Naveen as the winner. But people believe that had the selection been done through direct voting, the result could have gone in favor of Buddhia notwithstanding whatsoever might have been the hidden agenda of ETV.

Buddhia was defeated by Naveen Patnaik because the final round of votes was collected through mobile phones to the network of which the poor boy had no access. The Chief Minister won. But it was a politically sweating situation. A boy, less than five years in age, living in a slum, deprived by death of father, being bracketed with the Chief Minister in a popularity contest was enough to whip up a sense of rivalry in the later.

Naturally, the Chief Minister must not have cherished his position being bracketed with a four year old slum dwelling boy in popularity contest. And, therefore, it must have shrouded its impact over the psyche of his loyal colleagues in the cabinet.

It is to be noted that none of the cabinet colleagues of Naveen Patnaik, including Ms. Mallik, who are boasting of their popularity, was considered acceptable for the honor even in the primary stage of the competition when Buddhia Singh was found so suitable that he was placed in a bracket with the Chief Minister for final selection as “Dear Oriya”.

How the Chief Minister was given the victory in a stage-managed manner through SMS has been hinted to above. But what is pertinent at this stage is that, when the participating Oriyas stamped the small child Buddhia as suitable for the epithet “Dear Oriya”, Ms. Mallik, notwithstanding being the Child welfare Minister, was not found suitable for consideration even.

If she says that she is not jealous of Budhia, under such circumstances, it would look like an instance of abnormality. But Ms. Mallik is normal. Therefore, the State action to debar Buddhia from running seems to be based not on physical concern, but on political consideration.
<img src=”budh11

Had the popularity contest not placed Buddhia much above all the Ministers of Orissa and had the Chief Minister not found him as his rival in the final round of contest, the poor boy might not have been subjected to the tormenting action that the State is pursuing.

Buddhia had run marathon from Puri to Bhubaneswar on various days before the Limca test. But the State had neither stopped those runs nor had engaged doctors to test his physical condition. So the present action, if anything, is jealousy generated after Buddhia was found to be more popular than all the Ministers of Orissa and after the Chief Minister was placed in a bracket with him by people who stamped their choice in the popularity contest.

Like the sculptors of Konark legend killed Dharmapad out of envy, the present pack of jealous fellows are bent upon to extinguish Buddhia’s zeal for achieving further heights. And, with this design they are tormenting Buddhia.

It refuses to escape attention that the Police force was pressed upon Buddhia to whisk him away into Capital Hospital for investigation by a team of doctors on 05 May 06. If the intention was not mala fide, the Police would not have acted as harshly as it has done. The Police would not have gone to him in Khaki uniform and forced him to accompany them to the hospital. There was no difficulty for them to go to the boy in plain cloth. Going in plain cloth like gentlemen, they should first have befriended Buddhia and encouraged him to take a medical consultation for bettering his prowess. This would have facilitated the test in a congenial climate. But that was never to be done. No step was taken to estimate the impact of Police highhandedness on psyche of Buddhia. Therefore the step was conceivably designed to cause panicky in Buddhia. From what the doctors had said on the spot to what they have mentioned in their report to the Government after taking inordinately long time, one sees a difference that suggests that the doctors were to adjust to what they were expected to report. How wild could be imagination when doctors are to act under duress is discernible in the report that suggests that bio-chemical tests should be taken up on the boy to ascertain if he is on steroid! They have suggested that the boy should be subjected to Magnetic Resonance Imaging scan on his elbow, wrist, ankle, knee joints and lumber sacral of the spine to determine if any deformity has cropped in. These suggestions were afterthought when direct investigation failed to find any abnormality in the boy. That the government doctors have played a mischief is getting clearer day by day as specialists in more credible private hospitals with modern equipments are coming out with findings that Buddhia is perfectly normal.

The nastiest game Ms. Mallik is playing is that, she has been telling TV channels that the marathon run has damaged Buddhia to the extent of posing threat to his Kidney and lungs, even when she knows that the said channels will be amplifying her version time and again, which, eventually, may destabilize Buddhia’s self-confidence.

According to eminent psychiatrist Dr. Gopal Kar, who had headed the Psychiatric Society, this may lead to fear psychosis and unusual anxiety in Buddhia and unless the impact is reversed, there is every possibility that he may stop running altogether.

Personally I believe that Naveen Patnaik is not wholly aware of what is happening to Buddhia. People of Orissa found the boy more popular than his Ministers. For this, Buddhia is no way in fault. Therefore the Chief Minister in Naeen Patnaik should be magnanimous enough to save Buddhia from the foul game the Child Welfare Minister of his Government is playing.

Let there be no killing of a Dharmapada in real sense. Let it be found out through an authorized inquiry if the steps of Ms. Pramila Mallik in matter of Buddhia are not vitiated by jealousy factor and inferiority complex. Whether or not there is a political motive behind State action to destabilize Buddhia’s self-confidence after Orissa’s Ministers failed to match with his popularity in “Dear Oriya” contest, is an issue that needs to be answered by an independent body of investigation.

Is the Government of Orissa prepared for this?

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  1. Pingback: Chief Minister should say if Buddhia Singh is dead or alive | Orissa Matters

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