Subhas Chandra Pattanayak
The foreign company POSCO has been attacking the indigenous people of Orissa in Kujanga Tahsil of Jagatsinghpur district by using the government run by Naveen Patnaik.
Oriyas have been fighting against the foreign design to protect their soil, their living environment and their ancestral sources of livelihood.
From the senior citizens to school-going kids, from the grand mothers to the grand daughters, from the well-informed persons to the illiterates, the families of indigenous Oriyas have been opposing their displacement and the State Government’s mad manners to hand over the soil of their birth to the foreigners.
It is a shame that instead of supporting the indigenous people in their fight for preservation of their freedom, a gang of six, claiming to be research scholars and elite institute alumnus from Orissa at Delhi, have hijacked the Delhi Oriya Students Association (DOSA) to use that organizational name in creating a media environment in support of the foreigners.
One Tejeswar Parida, posing as the President of the Association, informed the Press that he and five others, in a delegation, were to meet authorities of the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) on June 22 seeking prosecution against POSCO Pratirodh Sangram Samiti (PPSS), the strongest fighting forum of Oriya people against the foreign design, as, according to imagination of Parida et al, in its protest rallies and road blockades the children were being forced to participate.
Eminent Journalist Prasanta Patnaik immediately dissuaded Parida and his gang from their proposed attempt to mislead the NCPCR in the matter. In his e-reply to Parida’s e-mail on June 21, Patnaik pointed out that the children in the POSCO site are never exploited by PPSS; rather, they have been proudly protesting against the threats posed to their future. “The poor children at the proposed POSCO site have every right to struggle for existence, which has been dangerously threatened by the POSCO and the State Government of Orissa as well as the Government of India”, he stated. Editor of Samadrusti, Sudhir Pattnaik wondered why Parida or for that matter DOSA was not moving the NCPCR against the government as the children of the concerned area are forced out of their studies as the schools are allotted to police forces that are their to provide armed support to POSCO land acquisition design.
And, many members of intelligentsia who are deeply disturbed over the governmental attack on human rights of the people in manners suitable to POSCO also supported the concern expressed by Patnaiks.
But as Parida did not respond to any advice, but on the other hand, went ahead with publicizing his proposed use of DOSA in meeting the NCPCR, the news attracted attention of some students of Orissa studying at Delhi. From their reaction, we gather that DOSA has never authorized Parida to use its name against Orissa kids fighting for survival from the foreigners’ design. There was no formal meeting of DOSA to discuss this issue and no such resolution constituting a delegate to meet the NCPCR was ever adopted. No majority view of members of DOSA was taken and hence, the gang of six has no authorized power from DOSA to mislead the NCPCR in the style it has publicized, which is designed to demoralize the kids of Orissa that stand with their families in the cause of saving their living environment and ancestral sources of livelihood.
The Oriya students studying at Delhi have not discussed how the children of Kujanga are struggling for their own survival from the pernicious clutches of the foreign firm POSCO on the platform of DOSA; because it is not functioning as a democratic body since long and hence the gang of six has acted unauthorizedly in using this platform in support of POSCO and in an attempt to demoralize the children that are standing with their parents to save their soil from the foreign company.
It would be proper for NCPCR, if at all it has accepted any such representation under banners of DOSA to ignore the same as an act of unauthorized persons anxious to ingratiate themselves to powers that be in search of their personal avenues and for other reasons known to themselves.