Report reaches us that the gang of miscreants who have illegally occupied the Samaja founded by Utkalmani Gopabandhu Das have dismantled his statue in the Gopabandhu Bhawan, Cuttack where the newspaper has its headquarters.
This nasty act is performed to please Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik who is eager for publicity with the general elections knocking at the door.
Patnaik is invited to unveil a new statute of Gopabandhu in place of the dismantled statue.
The dismantled statue was unveiled by Dr. Radhanath Rath, then the editor of the Samaja. The present gang of occupiers of the Samaja is headed by a non-Oriya Manubhai Patel through a challenged illegal election of office bearers of the Servants of the People Society (SoPS). Patel had taken huge money from the Samaja fund for his electioneering in Gujurat with the assurance to return the same within a short span of time. As he did not refund the same, despite repeated reminders, Dr. Rath had raised an allegation against him before the SoPS top brass. Dr. Rath had also exposed him as a man of moral turpitude. Therefore, having occupied the Samaja, even when his incumbency is challenged in the Court, he is determined to wipe out Dr. Rath’s name inscribed in the stone plate on the base of the statue of Gopabandhu.
And, to do this, the gang of illegal occupiers of the Samaja have somewhat arranged the Chief Minister’s consent.
But, in inviting the CM to unveil the replacement, the Manubhai gang has another motive too.
And, that is to browbeat the ADM of Cuttack who is conducting an inquiry into illegal occupation of the Samaja by SoPS.
This society, known then in Orissa as a platform of Gopabandhu for social service, and manned, then, by Gopabandhu’s proteges like Lingaraj Mishra and Radhanath Rath, has kept the paper in its wrongful capture by forging a will of Gopabandhu in its favor. After ORISSAMATTERS.COM exposed the forgery, some eminent media persons have formed a body namely “Save the Samaja Forum” to save the people’s paper of Orissa from the wrongful occupiers and have moved the Registrar of Newspapers for India to ensure that the paper founded by Utkalmani Gopabandhu Das and funded by the people of Utkal is no more left under a fraudulent ownership. The RNI has asked the ADM, Cuttack to enquire into the ownership issue and report.
The ADM had asked Cuttack Sadar Tahsildar to find out if the SoPS has any real will of Gopabandhu to claim ownership of the Samaja as it has been doing. The Tahsildar enquired into the matter to the best of his ability and to him, the occupiers of the Samaja could not show any proof in support of their ownership. But, before he could reduce his findings to a report, he was forced to abandon the inquiry and to simply return the matter to the ADM. This was under tremendous political pressure allegedly from a close cabinet colleague of the Chief Minister, Debi Pr. Mishra, who not only hails from the sub-division to which printer of the paper Niranjan Rath belongs, but also is tom-tomed as his relation.
The ADM, on enforced abandonment of the enquiry by the Tahsildar, and return of the file to him, is in a predicament. He cannot simply refuse the RNI to conduct an enquiry; because the ADM is officially the RNI’s agent in the district. If he conducts the enquiry, it would certainly come to his knowledge that SoPS is not the legal owner of the Samaja whereas it has filed blatantly wrong declaration on ownership of the paper.
As such, when authenticity of SoPS as owner of the Samaja is very much in dispute, by accepting their invitation to unveil a new statue of Gopabandhu in the Samaja premises, the Chief Minister will be giving them credibility as owners of the Samaja. And, thereby, helping them to browbeat the ADM.
Whether or not the CM has the intelligence to understand this foul play of the illegal occupiers of the Samaja is a matter to be watched.