Hindol Tangle: Will the Truth Really Prevail?

Subhas Chandra Pattanayak

Nabaghan’s alleged letter to Police Superintendent (SP) of Dhenkanal district, according to news, is carrying his signature as evaluated by the State Forensic Laboratory. In this letter, he is alleged to have alleged that there was threat to his life from his area MLA Ms. Anjali Behera, rewarded by Chief Minister with elevation to the cabinet rank from Minister of State.

This evaluation of the Forensic Lab has ignited a new demand for immediate dismissal of Ms. Behera from the Council of Ministers and her arrest and prosecution for extermination of Nabaghan, her alleged political rival and detractor in the constituency.

Even, in a panel discussion in Kamyab TV last evening, Sri Narendra Swain, a Secretary of BJD, the party of Anjali to which Nabaghan also belonged, has asserted that action would certainly be taken against the district SP as his inaction on Nabaghan’s letter culminated in his killing. Had the SP diligently acted, Nabaghan might have been saved, he has said. There is no dearth of political sophomores in BJD to vomit nonsense in public forums and therefore I am not inclined to put any premium on what the BJD secretary has unauthorizedly said in the Kamyab TV panel.

When the matter is sub judice, the BJD secretary’s assertion is absolutely irresponsible; because, it is to be determined whether or not the letter in question has any real relevance to Nabaghan’s death.

But commonsense suggests, if the rivalry between the two top BJD leaders of Hindol – Nabaghan in the chair of the Chairman of the Panchayat Samiti as against Anjali’s position as MLA – had gone into the extent of threat to life, the ruling party must have noticed the acrimony.

If Nabaghan could write this alleged letter to the SP, he must have written to his party and the party supremo several times before writing this alleged letter about the threat to his life from the party MLA-cum-Minister.

Why BJD and its supremo-cum-Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik did not take any step to solve the tangle?

Why Narendra did not utter a single word about it if such a life threatening tangle was really there?

Why the police is not exploring this angle?

Whether or not Nabaghan was murdered, as is being alleged, is a matter to be determined by the Court.

But what about talks in the grapevine that Nabaghan’s loss of life was not caused by Anjali but by an accidental hit on the zigzag hilly village road against a vehicle?

In Nabaghan’s case, if his letter to the SP seeking protection from Anjali is genuine, the BJD and its supremo Naveen Patnaik must first be held responsible for the loss of life, for having failed to solve the tangle in their own organizational platform. On the other hand, one would read from the letter that there was acute acrimony between Nabaghan and Anjali, which the local BJD workers deny.

The so-called letter of Nabaghan to the SP carries his alleged signature only, not his handwriting.

If he would sure have written this letter, it could entirely have been written by Nabaghan in his own hand.

He had neither any computer to type the alleged letter in his residence nor had he known typing in a computer.

He had not gone out of his village to type it elsewhere during the relevant time. No evidence to that effect is available.

Besides, Nabaghan had not gone to Dhenkanal to meet the SP on the alleged date.

Had he really prepared the letter elsewhere and signed the alleged letter and delivered the same to the SP, it could certainly have been in the records of the SP office. It is not on records there.

No figment of imagination can even accept that a SP refuses to receive such a letter from a Panchayat Samiti Chairman. It simply is not possible.

Everybody who knows how administration runs, knows it.

There may not be any action on any letter from a people’s representative, but a SP refusing to receive a letter from a Panchayat Samiti Chairman in person, when the same was to indicate a threat to his life, is impossible.

It is being touted that the SP was influenced by Anjali, the Minister, as a result of which he did not accept Nabaghan’s letter. If the SP had good relationship with Anjali, he had no bad relationship with Nabaghan.

On the other hand, if instead of relying on his party supremo – the Chief Minister – Nabaghan had preferred to rely upon the SP, then it is indicative of the reality that Nabaghan had reliable relationship and rapport with the SP and hence, it cannot be accepted that the SP had refused to receive the letter he had written him.

Had the SP, despite good relationship with Nabaghan, refused to accept the letter, he being a political bigwig of Hindol – holding the highest post in the Panchayat Samiti as its Chairman – was certainly equipped with the acumen to send the same to the SP by registered post with copies thereof communicated to the Director General of Police and the Home Secretary as well as the Chief Minister mentioning therein that he had to prefer the registered post as the SP refused to accept it.

Nabaghan had never done this.

So, it is clear that he had never written this letter to the SP of Dhenkanal.

On the other hand, it seems, the so-called letter to the SP has been typed on a sheet of paper where Nabaghan had put his signature earlier. This is certain, because the typing has been made to accommodate the signature.

Hence, despite Nabaghan’s signature, the alleged letter to the SP is a forged letter, no doubt.

If the SP had not received the alleged letter and the DGP or the Home Secretary or the Chief Minister was not served with a copy thereof, where from it emerged?

As it transpires, one Nabakishore Sahu – a Dhenkanal based lawyer – has supplied the alleged letter to Crime Branch after more than a week of Nabaghan’s death. Why he did it and how?

Let the CB investigate and find out the answers to these questions and let the Court do justice by searching for the answers.

Role of Nabakishore Sahu, lawyer needs be probed into

This much is relevant to recall at this stage, that, for more than a year before his death, Nabaghan was not holding any meeting of the Panchayat Samiti for which there was stalemate in implementation of various development programs. It had led the District Collector to convey a meeting of the Panchayat Samiti in his chamber at Dhenkanal. There was apprehensions that the Samiti may be superseded and therefore, Nabaghan was to seek judicial protection against possible supersession by invoking writ jurisdiction of the High Court. Nabakishore Sahu, the Dhenkanal based lawyer, who has given the alleged letter to CB, was his counsel. Therefore, it may be suspected that Nabaghan’s signature in plain paper was collected for judicial use by this lawyer, who has given the signed-on-typed-sheet alleged letter purported to be of Nabaghan to the CB, wherein the alleged threat to his life from Anjali forms the crux.

Was this lawyer having any grudge against Anjali? Perhaps yes. A close confident of Anjali for around a decade, he was eager to be reappointed as a Public Prosecutor and had pinned his hope on her. But he did not get the reappointment. He had reason to suspect that Anjali was responsible for denial of the APP post to him. It may be, he was determined to settle the score. And, perhaps, therefore, he used the signed plain paper to drag in Anjali to the murder angle by typing the so-called letter on it.

If CB investigation does not unsettle this suspicion, it would not be improper to assume that after transforming the accidental death of Nabaghan into an alleged murder, the son of Bijay Raut has been wrongfully arrested by shrewd exploitation of circumstances and confusion in the police to generate credibility for the cooked up allegation on the premises of Bijay’s good relationship with Anjali.

In this nasty game that the vested interest fellows play, if an innocent young man gets punished, it would be a sad blot on society.

Hence, these angles need urgent cogitation and exhaustive investigation and the media need be self-disciplined and far from being rash. Otherwise, the truth may not really prevail.

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