Students of Orissa who pride in being associated with the party that brought independence to India are now a frustrated lot. Their candidates in the just concluded College Union elections have measurably failed. But more than this humiliation, they are embarrassed by the total false claim of the PCC Chief Mr. Jayadev Jena that the party’s student wing (N.S.U.I.) candidates have grabbed most of the posts and majority of Unions.

This false claim of the PCC Chief is being used by winners, belonging mostly to ruling coalition, to tease the vanquished candidates of the congress wing.

The N.S.U.I. had never suffered a set back as devastative as it has experienced this year. Student ctivists like Ajaya Mohapatra, highly experienced in steering student-psychology, known to wider spectrum of students with his Vani-Vihar background, who has in previous years made remarkable contributions to victory of Congress candidates in most of the College Unions and other experienced student-leaders including some of the incombent office-bearers were ready to write congress victory this year too. But the PCC president made a mess of everything.

As is being seen, he was eager to alter the N.S.U.I. chief of Orissa in order to bring in his protégé Biswa Ranjan Mallik. In a press conference eminent office-bearers of N.S.U.I. state branch including Vice-presidents Saumyakant Samantasimhar, Biswa Bhusan Das and Biswajit Baral, General Secretary Ranjan Choudhury, Secretary Nishikant etc have alleged that the PCC Chief is trying to usher in such a student as their chief who has not even been successful in +2 Exam. How can the student community accept him as leader? they have asked and alleged that the PCC chief, in order to clear the way for his protege, has played the game cunningly by sloughing over organizational requirements of the students. They have even alleged that the PCC Chief had planted parallel candidates against official candidates of N.S.U.I. clandestinely. This is evident from a recent statement of the son of the PCC chief, they claimed.

The incumbent chief of the N.S.U.I Jinesh Das has taken the extreme step by resigning keeping on records his allegations that they were getting no guidance and encouragement from the PCC Chief. To the amusement of Congress baiters, the PCC Chief has preferred to counter Das by saying that the debacle in college-union elections was caused by his continuous absence, not by PCC negligence.

Who of the two is correct is Congress botheration to know.

But for the people of Orissa, at the moment, Congress is the last hope. The present government has ruined every norm of democracy. Commission agents have flourished everywhere from villages to the capital city. Starvation deaths have spread. Distress sale of crops and kids has increased. Number of workers migrating away from the State in search of bread has increased even as project-induced poverty has engulfed poor tribal population in every corner of Orissa. Administration has forfeited its credibility and Orissa has a Cabinet that has no commitment to the cause of Orissa.

People need a change. People need the educated youth to usher in the change. Unpolluted activists as they are, the student-wing of Congress can lead mass mind against the present misrule. Students are capable of making a change. Biju Patnaik was thrown out of power because of the students’ agitation in 1964. Therefore, in interest of the people of Orissa, the student wing of Congress must be saved from the self-centric design of PCC President Jayadev Jena so that they can bring forth the change Orissa is craving for. It is clear that he has given a false statement in matter of College Union elections. He has fidgeted and made the false claim in order to save his own skin, but in the process, has done a disservice to the party he has been appointed to lead in Orissa.

It would be proper for Congress high Command to investigate into the debacle its student wing had to suffer and to take stern steps to stop PCC Chief playing his nefarious game of nepotism any further. being the sentinel of Orissa feels it prudent to advance this advice as saving the State from the present misrule is the most urgent need of the moment.

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