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October 30, 2011

Nira Radia quits



In a spur of the moment, controversial corporate lobbyist Nira Radia, the owner of the PR firm which has Tata group and Mukesh Ambani-led RIL as its top clients, has decided to exit from communication consultancy business.

Is it because tapes have exposed prominent media-personalities allegedly engaged in brokering for hi-fi politicians and industrialists? Is it confirmation of exposure of some prominent media-persons in scandalous affairs through lobbyist like Nira Radia? Radia was also linked with Tata group i.e Ratan Tata.

"To give precedence to my personal priorities of family and health, I have decided against renewing any client mandates and to exit the business of communications consultancy," the Kenya-born and London-educated high profile lobbyist said in a statement to Times of India.

TRUTH BEHIND the 2G scam is coming to the surface, when Enforcement Directorate (ED) officials grilled corporate lobbyist Nira Radia with her admittance that she was liasoning with tainted former communication minister A. Raja on behalf of her client Tata Teleservices and accepted around Rs 60 crore from the client as legitimate consultancy fees.

Earlier, a statement which was released by her company Vaishnavi Corporate Communications, said that her only client Tata Telecom has been distinguished against over the years and therefore suffered huge losses.

A Reliance Indutries spokesman said, “We regret the decision of Nira Radia to discontinue her association with the business of communications consultancy and not renew any of her client mandates.

“We have enjoyed a professional and fulfilling relationship with Radia and her team over the last three years.”

“Radia’s commitment has been very impressive and she has always led her team in a manner that tactical developments do not lead to a de-focus on the strategic issues.
“We do appreciate and respect her wishes for a compelling need to focus on her family and personal issues. Radia leaves behind a very capable team and an indelible mark on the communications consultancy business...., the RIL spokesperson added. ( Collected from sources)


Looking at the magnitude of scams, price rise, insecurity about security in the last 20 years. It has gone up. I am proud to be indian but anyone who is born in 1920's must tell me, which period was the best for the common man in terms of prevailing prices, general admin , policing compare to present day ? I am not wrong if i say the purpose of freedom stand defeated . After 50 years, it has given way to scamsters, corrupt bureaucrats, netas and overall detoriation and lack of faith in our own ruling class.

As a human being, one needs money to survive on earth for fews years until he or she dies. I don’t understand what these people do by accumulating corers of money by illegal activities which they cant enjoy also. Humans have lost the track of LIFE. May be these people are accumulating corers of rupees and are going to bribe GOD to get admission in heaven.

This is disgusting. Even on the smallest of allegations against politicians, these TV channels will be running talk shows for weeks together. Their attempt to cover up these shows that they are more corrupt than the politicians. This is a dangerous situation for the country because, this incidence clearly shows that how a set of English news channel can block news. Then the same also is possible- cooking up news together.




Corrupt politicians, bureaucrats, PR companies or businessmen can only be as corrupt as the media allows them to be. This is the evidence. Now you can understand the value of the Padmashri and other national awards to journalists and the way they are distributed for the favours done to Congress. This will explain why Modi 's Godhra is never forgotten while the massacre of Sikhs under the congress rule is never mentioned; this will explain why media tells us that Rahul is the future of India. One hand washes the other while the body is covered with crap. Nearly two trillion dollars of India's wealth has disappeared and this media has not raised its voice. The saviour of the people is in fact their enemy.The country can go to hell It has gone to hell at the hands of the Neta, the Babu and the media. Now where should people go? The CBI is a part of the problem too.

SIDDHARTHA SHANKAR MISHRA,
BUREAU CHIEF,
TASVEER E HIND , THESE DAYS,
ORISSA, SAMBALPUR

October 27, 2011

Protecting Whistle Blowers

PROTECTING WHISTLE BLOWERS 27/10/2011

The most common response to the problems facing whistleblowers is to suggest better whistleblower legislation. Yet it is remarkable how ineffectual such legislation is. Not only are whistleblower laws flawed through exemptions and in-built weaknesses, but in their implementation they are rarely helpful. Indeed, it might be said that whistleblower laws give only the appearance of protection, creating an illusion that is dangerous for whistleblowers who put their trust in law rather than developing skills to achieve their goals more directly.

Government introduction of whistleblower laws can be explained in various ways: as a sincere attempt to help whistleblowers, as a form of symbolic politics to pacify concerned citizens, or as a cynical attempt to entrap whistleblowers in a procedural abyss. The precise explanation is less important than an understanding that laws are not the best protection for whistleblowers. This same analysis applies, in large measure, to other official procedures regularly used by whistleblowers, such as Ombudsmen, anti-corruption agencies and the courts.

Far more helpful to whistleblowers are practical skills at understanding organizational dynamics, collecting data, writing coherent accounts, building alliances and liaising with the media. The value of such skills is obscured in the focus on official procedures. Skill development is a form of personal and group empowerment, whereas official procedures empower bureaucrats and lawyers. This suggests that a good way to assess means for aiding whistleblowers is to perform an inventory of skills needed and promoted.

Whistleblower laws put the focus on whistleblowers and what is done to them. An unfortunate feature of this focus is a relative neglect of the original issue about which the employee spoke out. Whistleblower laws do not and perhaps cannot require an investigation into an employee's allegations. During the drawn-out process of assessing whether reprisals have occurred, the original issue is not addressed. For a dismissed whistleblower, "success" usually comes in the form of a settlement, not a reinstatement; success in terms of organizational reform is not part of the agenda of whistleblower laws.

These shortcomings of whistleblower laws are so systemic that it is worth asking why anyone would bother with them at all. Three types of explanations can be labeled sincere, symbolic and cynical.

Undoubtedly most of those who promote whistleblower laws are completely sincere. This includes many whistleblower activists whose sincerity cannot be doubted, given that they themselves are victims of reprisals. But sincerity of intent is no guarantee of effectiveness in execution. The flaws in the vehicle - whistleblower legislation - are seen as unfortunate weaknesses, due to poor drafting, inadequate resources or ineffectual implementation.

The Standing Committee on Personnel, Public Grievances, Law and Justice submitted its 46th Report on The Public Interest Disclosure and Protection to Persons Making the Disclosures Bill, 2010 on June 9, 2011. The Chairperson was Smt Jayanthi Natarajan as stated by Mr Kaushiki Sanyal . But the bill requires certain amendments.

Whistleblower laws are only one avenue for handling disclosures and protecting whistleblowers. Other official channels include hotlines, auditors-general, ombudsmen and courts These assessments can be explained, in a general way, in the same way as the shortcomings of whistleblower laws: it cannot be expected that any formal procedure could be enacted and implemented that would enable single individuals, backed solely by the truth, to reliably win against powerful organizational elites.
Administrative officers acting against corruption, whistle blowers, and social activists are getting either convicted on charges of sedition or getting killed
These pointers are very evident to every Indian citizen and are giving confidence to the rich and powerful to think that they can go scot free in this system, even after committing the heinous crimes.

Does the President of India need any more reasons to dissolve this government, declare an emergency and revamp the electoral, judicial, political and administrative systems with immediate effect?

Political parties are only concerned and interested in finding weak points of other parties to demean each other as opposed to finding a solution. Not only are they guilty of not seeking new avenues for the betterment of the country but they have also failed to improve their ways or learn from their previous corruption charges despite being given repeated warnings and chances.

Thus, we have lost our faith in them and cannot entrust the fate of the country in their hands anymore.

Times have changed, it has been 60 years our Constitution was made and major changes have happened in technology and in governance since 1950, however our constitution is same as it was in 1950 (with only minor amendments as per the requirement of the politicians).

As the Constitutional head of India, if you fail to take further action on issues mentioned above the general public will believe that the President is also a party to this corruption nexus and youth will be left with no option but to initiate a revolution against this system.

Reading about whistleblowers can be depressing: their experiences are traumatic, the way they are treated is grossly unfair and their success rate in leading to reform in organisations is extremely low. It is an additional source of disillusionment to find that official bodies - despite the good intentions of most of those who work in them - are so seldom helpful. But there are a few signs of hope.

According to me the very concept of whistle blowing is only a few decades old. Abuses of employees are as old as organizations as is the visiting of reprisals on those who expose problems. The naming of a problem is often a large step towards dealing with it. There has been an increasing recognition of whistle blowing in English-speaking countries in the past decade, especially due to media stories, aided by Hollywood portrayals such as The Insider, the story of tobacco company whistleblower Jeffrey Wigand.

Whistleblower legislation, though it may serve primarily as a form of symbolic politics that gives only the illusion of protection, nevertheless reflects social expectations that something be done about organizational abuses. In many countries there is no whistleblower legislation and virtually no recognition of whistle blowing as a course of action. For all their weaknesses, official channels offer an acknowledgement that whistles blowing is legitimate and socially valued, raising expectations of action and justice.

Whistleblowers and their supporters are sharing their insights and experiences. Books and articles provide a valuable resource. There is an ever-larger amount of material on the web, providing information and contacts. In Australia, Britain and the US, there are organizations whose members are whistleblowers, providing mutual help and support. The sharing of information and experience provides a rich form of learning that is especially powerful because of the personal trauma of whistle blowing. In years gone by, most whistleblowers would have been likely to suffer in silence, often blaming them. This still occurs, but it is now more common for workers to search the web, find relevant information and contacts and plot a course of action with a better chance of success.

As workers develop better skills, they will have higher expectations of official channels. A well-informed and well-connected employee will not turn to official bodies unless they promise better prospects than what individuals can achieve through their own efforts. Why make a protected disclosure when a leak or a well-planned campaign is safer and more effective? This suggests that the best way to improve the performance of official channels is to develop workers' understanding and skills.

SIDDHARTHA SHANKAR MISHRA,
BUREAU CHIEF,
THESE DAYS, TASVER E HIND,
ORISSA, SAMBALPUR

October 26, 2011

No need for corroboration and conviction can be imposed on the sole statement of the victim – Supreme Court

The Supreme Court has ruled that in rape cases there is no need for corroboration and conviction can be imposed on the sole statement of the victim. A bench of justices P Sathasivam and B S Chauhan said that the victims testimony cannot be looked at with suspicion. Supreme court adeed that it is a trite law that a woman, who is the victim of sexual assault, is not an accomplice to the crime but is a victim of another person’s lust. The Prosecutrix stands at a higher pedestal than an injured witness as she suffers from emotional injury. Hence, the victims evidence need not be tested with the same amount of suspicion as that of an accomplice. The bench dismissed an appeal filed by Mohd Imran Khan and Jamal Ahmed challenging their conviction for rape of a minor girl about 22 years ago. The defence had argued the victim’s statement cannot be relied upon as she had eloped with the accused.

In 2009, the court had ruled the same when awarding rigorous life imprisonment to convict Raju, a resident of east Delhi for raping his five-year-old neighbour. The apex court had ruled that the evidence of a victim of sexual assault stands almost on a par with the evidence of an injured witness and to an extent, is even more reliable. Evidence Act does not says that victims evidence cannot be accepted unless it is corroborated in material particulars. The court had also ruled that a victim is undoubtedly a competent witness under Section 118. However, courts also say that if a prosecutrix is an adult and of full understanding the court is entitled to base a conviction on her evidence unless the same is shown to be infirm and not trustworthy. If the totality of the circumstances appearing on the record of the case disclose that the prosecutrix does not have a strong motive to falsely involve the person charged, the court should ordinarily have no hesitation in accepting her evidence.

Errors in Age Verification

The medical report and the deposition of the Radiologist cannot predict the exact date of birth, rather it gives an idea with a long margin of 1 to 2 years on either side.

In Jaya Mala v. Home Secretary, Government of J & K & Ors., AIR 1982 SC 1297, this Court held:

However, it is notorious and one can take judicial notice that the margin of error in age ascertained by radiological examination is two years on either side.

(See also: Ram Suresh Singh v. Prabhat Singh @ Chhotu Singh & Anr., (2009) 6 SCC 681; and State of Uttar Pradesh v. Chhotey Lal, (2011) 2 SCC 550)

Judgement Text:

EVIDENCE OF PROSECUTRIX:

It is a trite law that a woman, who is the victim of sexual assault, is not an accomplice to the crime but is a victim of another person's lust. The prosecutrix stands at a higher pedestal than an injured witness as she suffers from emotional injury. Therefore, her evidence need not be tested with the same amount of suspicion as that of an accomplice. The Indian Evidence Act, 1872 (hereinafter called `Evidence Act'), nowhere says that her evidence cannot be accepted unless it is corroborated in material particulars. She is undoubtedly a competent witness under Section 118 of Evidence Act and her evidence must receive the same weight as is attached to an injured in cases of physical violence. The same degree of care and caution must attach in the evaluation of her evidence as in the case of an injured complainant or witness and no more. If the court keeps this in mind and feels satisfied that it can act on the evidence of the prosecutrix, there is no rule of law or practice incorporated in the Evidence Act similar to illustration (b) to Section 114 which requires it to look for corroboration. If for some reason the court is hesitant to place implicit reliance on the testimony of the prosecutrix it may look for evidence which may lend assurance to her testimony short of corroboration required in the case of an accomplice. If the totality of the circumstances appearing on the record of the case disclose that the prosecutrix does not have a strong motive to falsely involve the person charged, the court should ordinarily have no hesitation in accepting her evidence. The c ourt must be alive to its responsibility and be sensitive while dealing with cases involving sexual molestations. Rape is not merely a physical assault, rather it often distracts the whole personality of the victim.

The rapist degrades the very soul of the helpless female and, therefore, the testimony of the prosecutrix must be appreciated in the background of the entire case and in such cases, non-examination even of other witnesses may not be a serious infirmity in the prosecution case, particularly where the witnesses had not seen the commission of the offence. (Vide: State of Maharashtra v. Chandraprakash Kewalchand Jain, AIR 1990 SC 658; State of U.P. v. Pappu @Yunus & Anr. AIR 2005 SC 1248; and Vijay @ Chinee v. State of M.P., (2010) 8 SCC 191). Thus, the law that emerges on the issue is to the effect that statement of prosecutrix, if found to be worthy of credence and reliable, requires no corroboration. The court may convict the accused on the sole testimony of the prosecutrix.

The Trial Court came to the conclusion that there was no reason to disbelieve the prosecutrix, as no self-respecting girl would level a false charge of rape against anyone by staking her own honour. The evidence of rape stood fully corroborated by the medical evidence. The MLC of the prosecutrix Ext.PW2/A was duly supported by Dr. Reeta Rastogi (PW.2). This view of the Trial Court stands fortified by the judgment of this Court in State of Punjab v. Gurmit Singh & Or s. AIR 1996 SC 1393, wherein this Court observed that the courts must, while evaluating evidence remain alive to the fact that in a case of rape, no self-respecting woman would come forward in a court just to make a humiliating statement against her honour such as is involved in the commission of rape on her.

Similarly, in Wahid Khan v. State of Madhya Pradesh, (2010) 2 SCC 9, it has been observed as under:

It is also a matter of common law that in Indian society any girl or woman would not make such allegations against a person as she is fully aware of the repercussions flowing therefrom. If she is found to be false, she would be looked at by the society with contempt throughout her life. For an unmarried girl, it will be difficult to find a suitable groom. Therefore, unless an offence has really been committed, a girl or a woman would be extremely reluctant even to admit that any such incident had taken place which is likely to reflect on her chastity. She would also be conscious of the danger of being ostracised by the society. It would indeed be difficult for her to survive in Indian society which is, of course, not as forward-looking as the western countries are.

Much reliance has been placed by learned counsel for the appellants on the judgment of this Court in Javed Masood & Anr. v. State of Rajasthan, (2010) 3 SCC 538, wherein it had been held that in case the prosecution witness makes a statement and is not declared hostile, he is supposed to speak the truth and his statement is to be believed.

It is in view of this fact in the instant case that Puran Singh, I.O. (PW.15) has deposed in the court that the birth certificate of the prosecutrix did not relate to the prosecutrix. I did not verify about the birth certificate from the NDMC. I do not remember if at the time of bail application I had submitted that the birth certificate is genuine but does not relate to prosecutrix.

Thus, the question does arise as to what extent the court is under an obligation to accept the statement of Puran Singh, I.O. (PW.15) particularly in view of the birth certificate available on the record. In view of our finding in respect of the date of birth we are of the view that Puran Singh, I.O. (PW.15) unfortunately made an attempt to help the accused/appellants, though in the examination-in- chief the witness has deposed that the Birth Certificate providing the date of birth as 2.9.1974 was genuine.

Be that as it may, by now Puran Singh (PW.15) might have retired as the incident itself occurred 22 years ago. Therefore, we do not want to say anything further in respect of his conduct.

In State of Karnataka v. K. Yarappa Reddy, AIR 2000 SC 185, this Court while dealing with a similar issue held:It is well-nigh settled that even if the investigation is illegal or even suspicious the rest of the evidence must be scrutinized independently of the impact of it. Otherwise the criminal trial will plummet to the level of the investigating officers ruling the roost. The court must have predominance and pre-eminence in criminal trials over the action taken by investigating officers. Criminal justice should not be made a casualty for the wrongs committed by the investigating officers in the case. In other words, if the court is convinced that the testimony of a witness to the occurrence is true the court is free to act on it albeit the investigating officer's suspicious role in the case.

The investigation into a criminal offence must be free from all objectionable features or infirmities which may legitimately lead to a grievance to either of the parties that the investigation was unfair or had been carried out with an ulterior motive which had an adverse impact on the case of either of the parties. Investigating Officer is supposed to investigate an offence avoiding any kind of mischief or harassment to either of the party. He has to be fair and conscious so as to rule out any possibility of bias or impartial conduct so that any kind of suspicion to his conduct may be dispelled and the ethical conduct is absolutely essential for investigative professionalism. The investigating officer "is not merely to bolster up a prosecution case with such evidence as may enable the court to r ecord a conviction but to bring out the real unvarnished truth. (Vide: Jamuna Chaudhary & Ors. v. State of Bihar, AIR 1974 SC 1822; State of Bihar & Anr. etc. etc. v. P.P. Sharma & Anr., AIR 1991 SC 1 1260; and Babubhai v. State of Gujarat & Ors., (2010) 12 SCC 254)

Shri Amrendra Sharan, learned senior counsel has placed reliance on the judgment of this Court in Baldev Singh & Ors. v. State of Punjab, AIR 2011 SC 1231, wherein the convicts of gang rape had been sentenced to 10 years RI and a fine of Rs.1000/- each had been imposed and served about more than 3 years imprisonment and incident had been very old, this Court in the facts and circumstances of the case reduced the sentence as undergone, directing the appellants therein to pay a sum of Rs.50,000/- of fine to be paid to the victim and prayed for some relief.

The High Court after taking into consideration all the circumstances including that the incident took place in 1989; the appeal before it was pending for more than 10 years; the prosecutrix had willingly accompanied the appellants to Meerut and stayed with them in the hotel; and she was more than 15 years of age when she eloped with the appellants and the appellants were young boys, reduced the sentence to 5 years which was less than the minimum prescribed sentence for the offence. As the High Court itself has awarded the sentence less than the minimum sentence prescribed for the offence recording special reasons, we do not think it to be a fit case to reduce the sentence further in a proved case of rape of a minor. The appeals lack merit and are, accordingly, dismissed.

Judicial delay may become a thing of the past

The National Mission to improve the delivery of justice is at work.

In October 2009, on the basis of a Vision Document adopted at a judicial conference in New Delhi, the Government of India approved in principle a National Mission to reduce pendency and delays in the judicial system and enhance accountability through structural changes, higher performance standards and capacity-building. Many past attempts to achieve the goals did not yield results because of lack of institutional capacities, inadequate funding and want of a political will.

When it was realised that without judicial reform the development agenda cannot be carried forward, the 13th Finance Commission made specific recommendations for the grant of funds to improve justice delivery. The Union government announced a series of policy initiatives aimed at reducing pendency from an average of 15 years to three years — within a three year period. It was considered by many as too ambitious for a system used to chronic delays, outmoded procedures and indifferent management. With the money made available and strategies and plans worked out, the government has now come up with a National Mission to accomplish the goal within five years, coinciding with the period of the 12th Five Year Plan. This is a look at the Mission Goals, analysing the components of the Action Plan, examining the strategies proposed and evaluating the prospects, given the conditions on the ground and the constraints.

The catalyst

For a long time, the judiciary was outside the radar of the Planning Commission which distributed development grants. And when the Commission started providing funds, it turned out to be too meagre to make any capacity improvement. The State governments did not increase the number of courts required to handle the mounting number of cases, and the existing ones did not get the needed infrastructure. The judiciary is still to acquire information and communication technology (ICT) support systems to modernise processes, and continues to labour under the weight of over three crore pending cases.

Setting a condition that the government, the single largest litigant, frame a litigation policy aimed at reducing avoidable and unnecessary litigation, the Finance Commission recommended a grant of Rs. 5,000 crore to improve judicial outcomes through six strategic initiatives. These included increasing the number of court working hours, using the existing infrastructure but conducting proceedings in morning/evening hours under a shift system. Other measures involved increased use of Lok Adalats to ease pressure on courts, promotion of Alternative Dispute Resolution methods, training of judicial officers and public prosecutors to enhance capacities, addition of facilities in judicial academies, and the creation of posts of Court Managers in every judicial district to assist in administrative functions. The Central government issued a series of orders sanctioning funds and providing guidelines for the utilisation of the grants. The State governments have started issuing orders for utilisation.

Strategic initiatives

The Department of Justice, now headed by an independent Secretary-level officer under the Ministry of Law and Justice, has assumed the role of the Mission Directorate with the Secretary to Government as Mission Leader. Judicial reform is now as much a function of the government as it is of the judiciary. The Planning Commission has constituted a Working Group on Justice to prepare the demands of the justice system under the 12th Plan, and one can expect continued support, besides the Finance Commission allocations, for the Justice Department's Mission initiatives. The time is opportune for a breakthrough in the delivery of justice through the National Mission. The first step is to understand the implications of the Strategic Initiatives of the Action Plan and respond to the role and responsibilities envis aged under it. The Action Plan contemplates five strategic initiatives: policy changes, re-engineering procedures, human resource development, leveraging ICT and improving the infrastructure of the subordinate judiciary.

Among policy initiatives, the government has moved legislation proposing to increase High Court judges' retirement age and enhance judicial standards and accountability. National and State litigation policies are in the process of implementation as part of the National Mission. The All India Judicial Service is being taken up for Parliament's consideration. Improving the capacities of the judiciary proportionate to the workload is under way through judicial impact assessment as part of the legislative process. To improve human resources, legal education reforms are being considered.

Re-engineering of processes by removing bottlenecks and fast-tracking procedures constitute a major strategy to reduce delays. This may require amendments to statutes and rules; the Law Commission is being asked to work on it. Together with Lok Adalats, mediation, plea bargaining and negotiated settlements, a large part of pending cases is expected to be resolved. Clubbing similar kinds of cases, leaving administrative functions to Court Managers, introducing modern management tools and systems for docket and case management and so on, are other strategies mooted. In 2007, the e-courts project was initiated at a cost of Rs.440 crore (now revised to Rs.935 crore) to provide ICT infrastructure in district and subordinate courts and to computerise judicial records. This is scheduled for completion by 2014, e nabling the National Arrears Grid to be operational for integration with the Mission Plan. With the introduction of e-courts, along with video-conferencing, e-filing and related ICT-enabled services, the justice delivery system can be transformed to become people-friendly, less expensive and expeditious.

The human resource component will still be critical, and as such the Mission proposes not only to fill up judicial vacancies but also strengthen training through judicial academies. Efforts to provide continuing education and training for lawyers and public prosecutors are under way with the involvement of Bar Councils and law schools. Many of the shortcomings in the institutions and procedures can be overcome if motivated, competent personnel are available in adequate numbers.

Another component of the Mission involves the development of infrastructure in district and subordinate courts. During the 12th Plan period, all the 15,000 courts are expected to have buildings and equipment for them to be able to operate with efficiency. For this, substantial funds are sought to be provided by the Union government on 75:25 sharing basis. States have been asked to develop the design of modern court complexes in every district and estimate fund requirements. Hopefully, the judicial architecture will soon see a decisive change in terms of efficiency and towards a litigant-friendly atmosphere. Gram Nyayalayas to help rural folk access inexpensive justice at their doorsteps is another step envisaged. Again, with police modernisation, forensic science development, criminal tracking network sys tem and similar initiatives being implemented, it is hoped that criminal justice will soon have a human face.

Popular support

The plan is ready and the funds have been made available. Now what is needed is time-bound implementation in mission mode by the functionaries, and popular support to sustain the momentum. Unfortunately, even informed sections do not believe that pendency and arrears can be controlled given the prevailing mindset of those in charge of the systems, and the undue benefits the vested interests enjoy by keeping the systems as they are. The litigant public seems to be reconciled to their fate and the powerful among them are increasingly using extra-judicial methods to get their due.

Of course, this was the sentiment in the early-1990s about the economy as well. A decisive leadership took the risk and made the change possible, which the people welcomed in due course. Can such a thing happen in the judicial sector in the present context when the political will seems to be forthcoming and the funds have been provided? Let there be a campaign for judicial reform among the public to get the actors motivated by the leadership to take the Mission seriously for the cause of justice and development.

October 25, 2011

Is Ex Cop Bedi Tainted?


Is Ex Cop Kiran Bedi Tainted? 25/10/2011

THE INDIA against Corruption (IAC) activist Kiran Bedi is finding it hard to explain the recently submitted inflated air fare invoices for reimbursement, which she allegedly overcharged from her host NGOs and institutions. She used her own travel discount as a gallantary award winner and keept the rest of money for her NGO. Bedi has now announced that the outstanding amount is being returned immediately. Now eighteen more record of bills and invoices have been tracked. All these were allegedly submitted by her as false invoices to overcharge organizations for travel. She is still maintaining and defending herself that the money went to her foundation for social causes only.

Well there is a clear case of false claim in her travel. If the organisation is paying her full fare, then why should she avail discount from the airline which is already under loss, she could have paid full money to airline which she gets. Routing it to her own organisation is certainly a mal practice, in other words corrupt practice. They are not fit to be in the Anna team. Kiran and Arvind Kejriwal actions are now more political, singling out Congress.

Reacting to the allegations Kiran Bedi said to India today : "Business class travel is part of the invitation/entitlement from the event organisers/corporates I'm asked to speak at. Travelling economy is a choice despite entitlement is to ensure that savings remain with the NGO."

"(There is) no personal gain here. Sorry to disappoint detractors trying real hard to find a smoking gun. However, I accept this kind of coverage as a part of the challenges which being in public life poses," she said, adding the money "saved" went to NGO India Vision Foundation run by her.

"I have nothing to hide. Whatever money came from the organisers of functions, it went to the institution," Bedi said. "I get a lot of money through my lectures and royalty on books. I donate it to the NGOs."

Justice Santosh Hegde Anna Team member said today it will be a "misconduct" if activist Kiran Bedi had not taken the permission of organizers of events for transferring the difference in money on air tickets to her NGO.
Hegde said if she has taken the permission of the "donors", he does not think that there is anything wrong with it because they knowingly gave the money.
"Certainly, it would be the other way round. It will be a misconduct," Hegde told Karan Thapar in a TV programme when asked whether her act amounts to misconduct.

Queried whether simply informing the donors was the same as taking their permission, he said the donors should accept it. He also said donors have also a chance to say no to such requests.

Bedi is facing allegations that she was overcharging companies and institutions, who invited her to their functions, by inflating her travel expenses while availing discounts using her gallantry medal.

He said"I have my own reservations in regard to opinions expressed by other members of the team. But I am not going to leave Anna. The agenda is only to fight corruption, nothing to do with Kashmir, nothing to do with any other issue,".

Arvind kejriwal said that if the government goes pushing our team in muddy water we will definitely go for a massive movement much more than August movement.

This issue has assumed importance because she is fighting for corruption and it raises eyebrows on description of corruption by IAC. IAC rides on waves of popular disgust about rampant corruption. It seems the movement is only against politicians, political parties and is chosen to simplify and polarize matters. First, Team Anna should clear the classification of corruption to people before talking about the Jan Lokpall Bill, gheraoing legislators who objected to their clauses and blackmailing an elected government.

It is like adopting double standards and no amount of clarification for any misappropriation can be accepted by the people. Anna should ensure his team comprises of people with a clean image. They should clear the difference between ordinary hypocrisy and serious fraud, which matters more than their movement.
Team Anna should be grateful to a fractional electronic media that elevated them and gave status of national heroes. Slowly, the real face of this pampered group is being revealed. The days are not far when the evil campaign could disintegrate under the weight of its own challenges. To cleanse our system from corruption we need a real discussion not grandstanding.

SIDDHARTHA SHANKAR MISHRA,
BUREAU CHIEF.
THESE DAYS, INDINO, TASVER E HIND,
ORISSA, SAMBALPUR

October 23, 2011

ADVANI'S JAN CHETNA YATRA AT SAMBALPUR


Orissa News : Advani’s Jan chetna yatra reaching Sambalpur , Orissa 24/10/2011

Senior BJP leader L K Advani will touch Orissa on October 22 and cover a distance of 427 km on road in the state for three days during his forthcoming rath yatra, party sources said.
Advani will be greeted by party supporters at Sohela in Bargarh district after he enters the state from Chhattisgarh. The BJP patriarch is scheduled to address a public meeting at Bargarh the same day. After a brief halt at Attabira in the same district, Advani will proceed for Sambalpur and will stay there for the night.
Advani would have faced trouble if he would have visited Sambalpur via Bargarh NH-6. Apprehending the situation , the BJP workers at Bargarh district had threatened the govt to launch a massive movement against the government if they defer from repairing the road.

Even MLA Nihar Mahanad had decided to go fast unto death showing his concern for the Messiah of BJP Supremo. The Condition of the road is so poor to reaching sambalpur which is 50 km and because of the poor condition of the road it takes around 2 hours to reach Sambalpur.

Tension is brewing up at Sambalpur , the epicenter of western Orissa before the arrival of Mr Advani’s rathyatra politics at the western part of Orissa or one can say the whole Orissa. On 22nd Oct , just a day before his visit a case has been registered against the local MLA Jaynarayan Mishra and BJP Town Unit president and Ex municipality Chairman Mr Girish Patel . It has been claimed that for getting a sit during the municipal election and a post he went for a fake caste certificate. Patel is a bhahubali and a close aid of The MLA Mr Jayanarayan Mishra and a prime member of Mr Advani’s Rathyatra here at sambalpur.

In between , the BJD leader dist president launched a massive agitation in front of SP office on Saturday demanding their urgent arrest. The Sambalpur SP Mr Kanodia told the media persons that he would go for an investigation and there is a formidable task ahead for Mr Advani’s visit to sambalpur i.e. 23rd OCT on Sunday, he had not arrested them keeping to prevent any consequences.

We all are talking about corruptions in all India/Odisha level.But we are not actively fighting Corruptions,forgery,land grabbings by Sri Jaynaranyan Misra MLA Sambalpur and a ex minister as well as his coterie...He submitted a false educational affidavit, help 2 impostor as Chairman of Sbp.muncipalty and Burla NAC.He has been indicted by the CAG Report on his involvement in corruptions as an minister..He was involved in security number plate scam..He has earned a lot from allowing over load in trucks ..through agents...He has made fortunes in Port MOU..In his guidance Sambalpu Burla was looted by Girish Patel,Bishnu Rakhit and the chairman of the Sambalpur Muncipality Reena trivedi..He is the founder of Land mafia ism at sambalpur.The BJP office at the kacheri i.e in front of District Collector Office at Sambalpur

The BJP office kacheri Road is forcefully occupied..The House Girish Patel is staying too managed with force and powers. These people should be arrested..All their activities, properties, are to be inquired up on by high power vigilance department. He and his caucus are curse on sambalpur. Let Mr Advani knows what his party workers at lowest level are doing. These things must be highlighted.

When Advani announced that he proposed another cross-country yatra aimed at rejuvenating the party, many of his colleagues were caught by surprise. A section within the BJP sees it as an indication of Advani's determination to cling on to power by perpetuating factionalism within the BJP's Gen Next.

With Advani having a stopover at key places across the country, the party aims to showcase a united front with the public. Some of the high profile attendees include Arun Jaitley, Sushma Swaraj, Murli Manohar Joshi and Uma Bharati.
Treating these yatras as the continuation of a tradition that is "universal" as well as "deeply rooted" in Hindutva, Advani has used them as a tool for mobilizing mass support. While the Ram Rath Yatra of 1990 did lead to a resurgence in the BJP's support base, others evoked doubtful results.

If the 2009 Lok Sabha elections are any indication, Advani's Bharat Suraksha Yatra in 2007 aimed at exposing the government's failure to tackle terrorism and expose its policy of Muslim appeasement failed to make much difference. Nor did his Bharat Uday Yatra, which virtually amounted to a campaign for the 2004 Lok Sabha elections.

BJP leader LK Advani's Jan Chetna Yatra against corruption entered day 13 on Sunday. He will addressing five public meetings across Orissa over the next three days.
He had been accompanied by Ravi Shankar, Santosh Gangwa and Chandan Mitra. He gave talks on corruption, black money in Swiss Bank, nepotism, bribery and all related topics again and again, blabber the same thing again and again.

If there is will to stop corruption it can be stopped," Advani told the gathering, adding only three governments led by Lal Bahadur Shastri, Morarji Desai and Atal Behari Vajpayee were the ones which were "scam-free".
It is also being assured by MR L.K.ADVANI that if their party will come to power the Jan Lokpal Bill will be passed. Its like a pot calling the kettle black.

The other stark reality is Advani's race to the Prime Minister post. Though Advani has denied that he was in the race, he had stated that it was up to the party to decide on the same at an appropriate time.

In my opinion it is a political gimmick to keep people in illusion and allure them towards the NDA or BJP. In this party where there is no internal democracy and people from these party are not free from corruptions and scandals to what extent the BJP will give an excellent and solid governance.

Now Politics has become a profession and not people’s proper representation. This Jan Chetna Yatra or voyage of Mr Advani is like kicking against the pricks and carries no meaning at all.

SIDDHARTHA SHANKAR MISHRA,
BUREAU CHIEF,
THESE DAYS, TASVER E HIND,
ORISSA, SAMBALPUR

October 22, 2011

Team Anna losing focus

Team Anna out of focus 23/10/2011

IN INDIA politics is the only branch that dominates all major sectors of the country. Since its origin and development it has emerged in all spheres of life. Even the smallest of the movement has the hand of a political party. The one who provokes the movement gets public support. The political party gets the votes out of it. If you really want to help masses and fight for any noble cause on your own, this aspect of our democracy needs to be taken into consideration.

TEAM Anna anti-corruption movement suffered a blow as two members of its core group quit citing the reasons that their movement is indulging in politics, and is now functioning in undemocratic ways. There are some rumors of strong differences within the organization. It seems Anna is losing his fan base as another team member Arvind Kejriwal faced a shoe attack during a public meeting in Lucknow. Anna, himself has opted for Maun Vrat on health grounds; his activist team members are now more ambitious in self interest and media attention than rational and autonomous viewpoints on anti-corruption, which is their main agenda.

It is mockery that Team Anna is involved in political movements and their original schedule is losing it stand In my opinion social activists should keep a distance from country politics. I wish Team Anna should put all the eggs in one basket and focus on the crux of the issue which they have raised earlier. Their locus standi is not clear.

We can't forget how Baba Ramdev got into a mud puddle with political critics against him when he criticized the Congress government. It ended up in investigations against him. The latest Anna Hazare movement against corruption that rocked the nation also could not stop itself from targeting the very roots of politics.
People who are supporting Anna and his team are now having differences relating to ways of functioning after Prasant Bhushan's recent remarks on Kashmir plebiscite. The problem for Anna's movement started with the Hisar byelection where Team Anna decided to intervene in the elections and left the supporters confused.

Another Team Anna member Justice Hedge disapproved the idea of the team campaigning against the Congress party. It is clear now that Team Anna claiming credit for the preset Hisar result was an act of opportunism applies to Indian politics. The parting of two members from core group will hardly affect the movement but a campaign against an unhelpful power in an election is naturally a weapon and entirely democratic - as the weapon of hunger strike cannot be used often or insignificantly employed.

Team Anna shocked the nation when congress leader Digvijay Singh produced the letters, which revealed a link among RSS and the movement of Anna. Contradictions have uprooted the movement from the very beginning. Kiran Bedi is a so-called Sangh Parivar’s ideal female who takes inspiration from senior BJP leader LK Advani. Arvind Kejriwal on the other hand is very political in his thoughts and defends Naxalites. Prashant Bhushan made regular visits to Kashmir when he was not in limelight to understand all about Hurriyat. People who blindly supported them quite possible they were unaware about the darker side.

When the movement was at its height many leading journals and electronic medias had quoted Kejriwal saying that, “Team Anna has never been into the politics but we are not in any party”. The unfolded layers of history reveal everything about the past. Whenever issues like corruption have emerged the masses have always ignored those arguing inside the movement, which is hidden from the naked eye.

Anna Hazare, the nation’s latest face against corruption, is being viewed by a section as merely a 'weapon or medium' used by Arvind Kejriwal, Kiran Bedi and the father-son duo of Prashant Bhushan and Shanti Bhushan.

Using election crusade as a weapon is not going to make any difference. It only shows that Team Anna is not adding value to their movement through these exercise rather they are kicking against the pricks. One cannot forget how Baba Ramdev got into muddy water i.e. the devil and the deep blue sea, with political critics against him when he lambasted the Congress government blatantly. Now he is into crisis and investigations. Again the Hazare movement that rocked the entire world also could not stop itself from targeting the very roots of democracy.

It is only causing conundrum in the minds of caste based-politics supporters, which is a key trick of winning any election. The movement is now burdened with allegations of selfish motives and is leaving a negative impression on Anna’s fans. If Team Anna wants continuous support from the general public they must stay away from politics to ensure that its courageous effort to start the movement is exceptional spirit.

Are masses making fools out of them by supporting all such causes? Team Anna’s mode of operation is yet to be understood. If we learn from history, especially the common man, then it would be easy to make a smart decision rather than going with the flow. Never share your nobility with any harmful components and betray citizens. If someone raises voices against the government or any other social causes the political parties will raise their set of CBI investigations.

All the movements, no matter however big or small, have always seen a political twist! Is there any movement that has not got a political hand behind or any political party?

SIDDHARTHA SHANKAR MISHRA,
BUREAU CHIEF,
TASVER E HIND , THESE DAYS,
ORISSA , SAMBALPUR

October 21, 2011

THE SENSITIVE CASE OF SUBHASHREE PANDA

The Sensitive Case of Subhashree Panda 21/10/2011

Orissa News : Orissa High Court today quashed the case registered and taken cognisance of by a fast track court against Subhashree Panda alias Mili Panda, the wife of Orissa based Maoist leader Sabyasachi Panda.This is a big relief for her , who got arrested on the night of January 14th 2010.

Police had registered the case against her under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act for alleged involvement in terror activities. The fast track court of adhoc additional district sessions judge, Khurda, had taken cognisance of it observing that “there are sufficient materials to frame charge against the accused”.

“The high court order paves the way for her release from custody,” Subhashree’s counsel Manoj Mishra told The Telegraph. Subhashree is lodged at Jharpada jail in Bhubaneswar.

The accusation came in wake of naming of these five lawyers as supporters of Subhashree Panda, wife of dreaded Maoist leader Sabyasachi Panda, in a statement allegedly recorded from Ms. Panda.

The five lawyers are Nihar Ranjan Patnaik and Gupteswar Panigrahi from Koraput, Santosh Kumar Mohapatra from Berhampur, Biswapriya Kanungo from Bhubaneswar and Prasant Kumar Jena from Cuttack. Mr. Kanungo and Mr. Jena were defending case of Subhashree Panda who was arrested last year.

Mr. Kanungo said Ms. Panda had complained in court of law that Crime Branch had taken her signature on blank papers. “We fear those papers are being used to implicate lawyers and human rights activists,” he charged.

“Such type of serious and conscious efforts by the government machinery to intimidate and scare defence lawyers certainly is a great hurdle for member of legal profession to perform their duty properly and it is adversely affecting the right to profession as guaranteed under Article 19 (G) of the constitution,” they said in the complaint.

These lawyers further alleged if such would be the situation, accused persons would be seriously handicapped in defending themselves in engaging lawyers of their own choice which was a fundamental right guaranteed under Article 22 of the constitution.

They urged Bar Council to intervene in the matter and safeguard rights, privileges
and interest of five legal professionals in particular and legal professionals of the State as a whole and impress upon the government not to create a terror atmosphere under which defence lawyer could not discharge their duty properly.

Some other lapses during and after her arrest were also pointed out. “The high court, however, did not pass any observation on them, saying it was not necessary after quashing the cognizance taken by the fast track court,” Subhashree’s counsel said.
It was alleged that provisions of the Criminal Procedure Code (CrPC) and Supreme Court guidelines were violated from the time of her arrest. She was arrested after sunset in the absence of a magistrate and her nine-year-old daughter was left behind helpless. She was also not allowed to contact her relatives and lawyer. Subhashree was remanded in police custody beyond the stipulated 15 days. This was done by the court of the judicial magistrate (first class), Banapur, without vetting the case diary, it was alleged.

But however the Hon’ble High Court on Wednesday quashed the proceeding against Subhashree panda , the wife of the Chief of the Moist leader Sabyaschai Panda. It is further lamented that Under the Provisions of Unlawful Activities ( Prevention) act , the state govt should appoint another officer to make an independent opinion or review of the case against the accused, but the case procedure was violated, according to High Court of Orissa. “In the this matter of Subhashree panda right procedure was taken, we can certainly remedy it.” Said the Chief Secretary Mr. Bijay Patnaik to Times of India and other reporters.

SANGRAM KESARI PANDA,
CORRESPONDENT THESE DAYS,
THROUGH
BEREAU CHIEF,
SIDDHARTHA SHANKAR MISHRA,
THESE DAYS , TASVER E HIND,
ORISSA, SAMBALPUR

Orissa CM seeks help from centre for flood relief

Orissa CM wants help from centre figure amounting to RS 1000 Cr for flood aid 21/10/2011

Orissa latest news : Chief minister Naveen Patnaik on Wednesday urged the Centre for urgent release of Rs 1000-crore ad hoc flood assistance to Odisha in advance from the National Disaster Response Fund even as the Centre provided the second installment of its share of the State Disaster Response Fund (SDRF) much early.

In his second letter in a week’s time to Union home minister P Chidambaram, Patnaik on Thursday said that the state had already incurred sizable expenditure on immediate restoration measures including provision of emergent relief to the affected people in 21 flood-hit districts.

Patnaik expressed gratitude to Chidambaram for releasing Rs 154.19 crore toward the second installment of Central share of the (SDRF) in advance.
Patnaik has also asked different departments to expedite their respective works in the flood hit areas.



The water resources department has immediately restored 234 breaches and started providing water to the agricultural fields through canals.
Similarly, it has also been decided to repair 2500 Lift Irrigation (LI) points with an allocation of Rs 9.8 crore within 45 days.

The state government has earlier allocated Rs 1,000 crore from its own fund to revive the severely affected rural bridges, washed away in back-to-back floods.

Incessant rains and massive floods in two spells have washed away several rural houses, roads and bridges in the state and have claimed nearly 80 lives. The state government has asked the Centre to provide Rs 3,265 crore to compensate the flood damage.

Samgram Kesari Panda
Correspondent
These Days,
Through,
Bureau Chief : SIDDHARTHA SHANKAR MISHRA, THESE DAYS, TASVER E HIND

October 20, 2011

THE CONCEPT OF MODERNISATION

The Concept of Modernization 20/10/2010

India is the world’s youngest nation with sixty percent of its population under the age of twenty five. That makes a staggering 612 million young people. India along with China is one of the fastest growing economics I the world, leading to a massive urbanization in search of a livelihood , education or a better life in general. Young independent and prosperous would describe a typical urban Indian society.
These may seem to be ideal attributes, but cut off from one’s roots, without proper guidance and with excessive disposable income, the young urbanities of India are indulging in counter-productive thoughts, interactions and desires. Steeped in materialism and the samskaras of consumerism, they lose out on the beauty and simplicity of life. I am also one among the youth of India.
Perceptions differ about modernity, and how people can correlate it in a wrong sense. A person's life is his own, so let people live the way they want to. A modern mind therefore is not judgmental.

MODERNISATION WAS a global impact of westernization that arose out of industrial revolution and its impact in the West. In actuality, it relates to freedom of work and social mobility. The independence to choose what one likes to do without bothering others.
Modernization is not only economic development but also evolution of minds. It is not stagnant but an ongoing process. There are many people who often link modernity to western clothes. God knows what strikes their mind to think about it in this way? People have a mentality that if one is wearing western clothes that means he or she thinks they are modern. The truth is that they like to dress this way.
Modernization theory makes the claim that Western capitalist values and practices are the basis for “modernizing” third world countries and helping them become self-sustaining. However, Latin America feels that following the modernization theory would only widen the gap between first and third world countries, causing the third world countries to depend even greater upon the first world countries for survival. If this were true, then modernization for women in these countries would also be negatively affected. In this paper, I will evaluate the views of both the modernization theory of the first world countries and the opposing view of the third world countries, and I will establish that even though modernization can benefit third world countries, it is not the best solution.

We have seen that modernization has actually hindered the development of third world countries. It is true, that third world countries do not have the modern conveniences and attitudes that accompany developed first world countries, but in order for them to become developed, they have to leave too much of who they are traditionally behind them in the process. They have societies that have worked for them for centuries, and if developed first world countries try to modernize them, they will only bring greater problems to the global community. Third world countries will lose their natural resources through unfair trade with first world countries, and problems facing women in these countries will only be intensified. Cooperative production that is fair is the only way that will ease the struggles of third world nations. Through cooperative production between men and women, and through fair compensation for both men and women, their lives will also exist in a better balance as they are recognized as equal contributors to their respective societies.


It should be clear that modernization has never affected Indian society. Only a handful of cities are influenced by modernization. It has untouched the rural lives in all means from clothing to cultures. This is nothing but merely people’s perception. Modernity lies in the brain. The broadness of your thoughts and actions shows how much modern you are. It lies in mind not in clothes. Your views and thoughts about any particular thing make you modern. Modernization has improved our lifestyle for sure, and standard of living has improved and will develop even more. It would be wrong to take it in a bad aspect or to overlook it. So the next time when you look at someone do not judge his modernity by his lifestyle but his thoughts and actions.

Now in India, we have had the crisis about cultural identity with us for centuries; but it acquired a new form and content following the encounter with the West. It is in this context that the dilemmas of a man like Jawaharlal Nehru appear poignant and the challenge hurled at the Western civilization by Mahatma Gandhi becomes a major historical event. It is not the content of this challenge which is so important as the intention -- a repudiation of the basic premises of the industrial civilization -- and the mode of expression. A Japanese historian, Minoru Kasai, in his published lecture on Gandhi and the contemporary world, has pointed out that Gandhi is as relevant to Japan in her present predicament as he has been and continues to be India in hers. In fact, Kasai emphasizes the universal import of Gandhi's vision.

This is a democratic country where people are free to speak their mind but do not let your right hurt others' sentiments. If someone can handle his life the way he wants then there is no need for indulgence or interference of others. Other cultures and traditions have influenced one another. An individual interest will make him copy a certain culture. This is what modernization stands for. Like a famous quote goes “Modern civilization is complicated and artificial. Simple folk live in a world of love and peace. Let no one hate another or harm another.”

India has the distinction of evolving one of the longest continuing civilization in the world, which is constantly adapted itself to the changing political and socio-economic contents and specific watershed events in her history. Her family system has proved to be a remarkable stable unit of society which has shown great flexibility and adaptability in the phase of rapid social changes. This paper briefly traces the past taken by India in the modernization process, then analyzes the impact of social change of family structure, functions, roles, relationships and status of its members and its relationship with kinship system.

Lastly, it draws implications for counseling interventions based on the changing needs of contemporary Indian Families.

I may conclude by referring to a wise book, Japanese Culture, by the Japanese anthropologist, Eiichiro Ishida, published in 1974, in which he cautions against any oversimplified notions about intercultural understanding. He says that there would always be a residue of Japanese culture that would remain inaccessible to the Europeans, and vice versa. The same would apply to an Indo-Japanese cultural dialogue also. Will you ever quite get at the roots of our preoccupation with religion? And will we ever get hold of the mainsprings of your pragmatism? But India also said that, though difficult, intercultural understanding is worth striving for. The common element in the Japanese and Indian experience of the last hundred years or so has been our encounter with the West. Maybe we have significant things to tell each other about this experience -- about the agonies of refashioning cultural identity. Hence the great importance of the theme of this symposium.

Siddhartha shnakar mishra,
Bureau Chief,
These Days, Tasver E Hind,
Orissa, Sambalpur

October 17, 2011

Airport at Jharsuguda

Jharsuguda Airport upcoming 18/10/2011

ORISSA NEWS : -The Airports Authority of India (AAI) under the Union ministry of civil aviation will sign a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the Orissa government very soon for the development of a second airport in the state at Jharsuguda.

The Government of India has decided to renovate the existing upcoming Jharsuguda airport, 50 km from Sambalpur. Jharsuguda has an airport demands because most of corporate offices cropping in leaps and bounds. And going a step ahead, the State Government has decided for public-private-partner for speedy activation of the work.

The Orissa government has urged the Airports Authority of India (AAI) to scale down its requirement of land for development of a new airport at Jharsuguda, an upcoming industrial hub in the state. Important sources said, a maximum 734 acres of land is available near the location which includes 418 acres of private land.

News got from sources that SREI, a Kolkota based finance company has expressed interest for the work and negotiating with the Government, sources said. "However, no final decision is taken in this regard. A confirmation is sought from the Airport Authority of India (AAI) whose decision will be final," informed the Works secretary of State SK Ray.

Presently, there is only one airport in the state- the Biju Patanaik Airport in Bhubaneswar. In addition to this, there are 16 airstrips and 12 helipads for landing of aircrafts and helicopters. When fully operational, Jharsuguda will be the second full fledged airport in the state after Bhubaneswar.

Sources said, the Jharsuguda airstrip will first be renovated to make it fit for landing of small 15-30 seater ATR aircrafts. In the second phase, it will be upgraded to the status of a full fledged airport.

Similarly, the state government is considering the proposal of AAI for providing additional 23 acres land for construction of parallel taxi track and development of 300 metres basic strip at the Biju Patnaik airport in Bhubaneswar, Patnaik said.

Correspondent – Sangram Kesari Panda,
Sambalpur.
Through , Beareu Chief,
SIDDHARTHA SHANKAR MISHRA,
TASVER E HIND, THESE DAYS,
ORISSA,SAMBALPUR

Legal aspect on living Relationships


Legal aspect on live in Relationship 17/10/2011

There is no legal bar in India for women and men staying together, as it is matter of two consenting adults and live -in relationship is not socially accepted in India and still considered as taboo and sin.No one will give house for rent to couple , unless they are convinced that couple is legally married or unless they mislead the house owners that they are married.

The Supreme Court : Law and morality

The Supreme Court of India ; bench consisting of Chief Justice K G Balakrishnan, Deepak Verma and B S Chauhan in actress kushboo case said "When two adult people want to live together, what is the offence. Does it amount to an offence? Living together is not an offence. It cannot be an offence, “The court opined according to Indian Mythology even Krishna and Radha lived together."[1] “Please tell us what the offence is and which section of law applies?”The apex court also cited Article 21 of the part -III of the Constitution of India, which expressly guaranteed the right to life with dignity, liberty and respect, and court also stressed that the perceived immorality by a few protagonists of morality cannot be branded as offence.."The major girl is free to marry any one and she can live with any one ",The live-in relationship between two consenting adults does not amount any offence ,which is heterosexual in nature [which is contrary to Adultery ,which is offence under Indian Penal code 1872][2],The Kusbhoo case will be known for upholding of freedom of expression ,free speech ,individual rights ,she has right to express her views on any subject within parameters of law.The supreme court did not any fault with her views,opined she has right to express her opinion.

Later ,Justice Balakrishnan criticized media for making the issue of his remarks about Radha-Krishna relationship, when Hindus opined Krishna was just 10 yrs,when he left virdavan , how can child can have sexual relation at such young age, more over it wrong comparison, devoid of merits,but said observation about per-marital sex,sparked intense debate ,whether Supreme Court is endorsing Pre-marital sex and relationship out of wedlock. Whether it is legalizing bigamy and extra -marital relations?

In 2001 ,Payal Sharma Vs Superintendent, Nari Niketan and others case, the Allahabad High Court , the bench consisting of Justice Markandeya Katju & Justice R B Mishra held that ’In our opinion, a man and a woman, even without getting married, can live together if they wish to. This may be regarded as immoral by society, but is not illegal. There is a difference between law and morality.”

Traditional &Customary view point :

The most hardcore moralist and traditional Hindus criticized the said observation ,there were of view that it will damage the institution of marriage and encourage extra-marital relationship and casual sexual relationship ,out of wedlock ,which will dilute the concept of holy marriage or scared union .which will cause damage to the age old -family values practiced by Hindus since time immemorial.They are of view that losing virginity is sin as per customary law ,in Mythology Kunti abounded Karna ,because he was born out of wedlock. The Rama is ideal husband and Sita is ideal wife.

Many are of view that if live-in relationship is encouraged ,it will increase Teenage child pregnancy,HIV,children born out of wedlock may be not properly brought, which will lead to juvenile delinquency. It will have adverse impact on the society.
The fact is that Hindu Marriage laws are no more religious law or customary law ,it has assumed secular character after codification in 1956.The Hindu marriage act 1956 is also applicable to Sikhs,Buddhist and jains.

Liberal view point :

Most liberal thinkers opined that ,it is progressive pronouncement by the apex court ,at last the court in-deed ,accepted the concept of dating ,which is prevailing in cities and towns and it is reality that most young dating couples are entering into live-in relationship to test their compatibility to each other ,the cohabitation will allow them to understand each other well ,which will help them to take decision for permanent commitment through legal marriage and legalize relationship by entering into legally valid marriage. It is better opt for live-in relationship than going for divorce, this is basic logic of live-in relationship in western countries. This purely western concept of relationship based individualism, primary motive is more freedom, monetary independence ,non-interference of their personal affairs and career.

Many are of view that If the live -in relationship is recognized by the courts , they can get alimony[maintenance] and other benefits like legal accepted marriage "it will give protection to dating couples like maintenance[alimony],domestic violence [PHYSICAL, MENTAL , SEXUAL ABUSE &ECONOMIC] as progressive legislation like The Protection of Women from Domestic violence Act , 2005 had , in fact , recognised the concept of live-in relationship and aggrieved women of such relationship is entitled for relief on par with legally wedded wife.

What is Definition of Live -in Relationship :

What is live -in relationship, whether mutual cohabitation, whether one night -stand of ,one weekend or one month or one year cohabitation amounts to live -in relationship , in a given case ,if man and women cohabit for a week for dating purpose ,then they parted ways after a week ,if women files case for maintenance ,whether women is entitled for maintenance or not, in such cases, courts were of opinion that it does not recognize "walk in -walk out" type of live-in relationship, said relationship should be for a long period of time marriage like commitment only such relationship are legally recognize for awarding relief under law.

Legal definition of Live-in Relationship:

The Supreme Court said in Patchalammal case , not all live- in relationship is recognized ,relationship in nature of marriage are only recognized. The court opined that merely spending few weekend or one night stand would not make domestic relationship, while disposing case filed under protection of women from Domestic violence Act 2005.

There four key requirement to fulfill the criteria of live-in relationship

1. Legal age to marry,
2. Qualify to enter legal marriage
3. Must be unmarried
4. Voluntary cohabitation should be for considerable period of time

Advantages of Live-in Relationship

1. Freedom, convenience, and no restrictions or no commitment on each other, based on concept of protecting individuality ,western concept of individualism, no domination on each other, non interference in their personal activities and career.
2. Easy to enter into relationship ,without any formalities or unlike customary rites like spathapadhi or kanya- dhan or mangalsutra dharan,no dowry or jewelry for traditional marriage.
3. No need to spend huge money on engagement and marriage ceremony
4. Easy to break with no legal hassles.
5. Easy to enter another relationship, unlike in normal marriages,couple has to face arduous and protracted litigation to get divorce and wait for notice ,then re-marry.

Disadvantages of Live- in Relationship:

1. Not a legally recognized relationship.
2. Faces social problems.
3. No support from family& bound to get isolated in social circles.
4. Children born out of live-in relationship faces problems.
5. Insecurity &Threat of breaking, bound to haunt couples.
6. Tussle between legal wife&her children and live -in spouse &her children born out of live -relationship, disputes of inheritance of property and money may end up in courts. More scope for legal problems due to non- acceptance of live -in relationship by existing legally wedded wife ,especially in bigamous relationship.

Live in Relationship &Social acceptance :

Many opined that there are many successful living examples of live- in relationship, moreover, we can say successful long term commitment to each other is important ,which are prevalent in higher classes in urban educated class society and such relationship does not harm the institution of marriage ,even there are examples of unsuccessful arranged marriage with excellent horoscope match, which are leading to divorce. The Live-in relationship will co-exists with legal marriages. The India ,being plural society will accept live-in relationship ,if they are accepting gay relationship. There is demand to decriminalize 377 IPC and the Delhi High Court in Naaz foundation ,opined that time has come to decriminalize 377 IPC,social deviant gay relationship, this issue is pending with Supreme Court of India.

The Courts do not exists for Moral policing :
It is a illusion say that supreme Court has given green signal to pre-marital sex or sex out of wedlock ,it has only accepted fact, this trend is widely prevalent among higher class and upper middle class youngsters in the urban society and second marriage /relationship out of wed lock is prevalent in urban and rural societies ,they should be legally recognize for giving relief in case of abuse of said relationship, because in these cases ,the women will be at receiving end ,needs legal protection against abuse.

The Supreme Court recently held that children born to second wife are not only entitle for maintenance ,but also share in the ancestral property, whether we can construe that said judgment will encourage the bigamy. It is only accepting the fact that second marriage is widely prevalent and exits in society and court have to render them equitable justice, on par with legal marital relationship .It will be grave injustice to victims of illicit relationship and children ,if supreme Court refuses to accept the cases of maintenance, alimony , inheritance merely because ,the second marriage [with living spouse &earlier marriage not legally dissolved] is criminal offence under the provision of Indian Penal Code,1872.

Conclusion :

The courts do not exists for any moral policing or imposes its choice on people ,it up to people to chose between live -n relationship and customary marriages [legal] relationship to save their own self interest. The court 's duty is to render justice to the aggrieved person. The people are matured in -enough to make choice between marriages and live -in relationship. Many traditionalist believe that youngsters are losing values, progressive people view it has pragmatism, as we have entered into information age. Even live-relationship is not morally accepted in the society and still considered sin. But relationship has become a reality and emerging trend in the urban areas among educated and higher classes even though it is by-product of western, consumerist and materialistic culture ,needs to be recognize for the purpose of according legal protection from the abuse. The society can not deprive their rights on the ground of protecting social morality and the issue of remedy for violation of their rights should be accorded at- most importance. The Hindu marriage Act 1956 is secular act, bound to change ,according to needs of the society. The various judgments of the courts speaks that the law needs to change, according to changing circumstances and societal perceptions.

SIDDHARTHA SHANKAR MISHRA,
BUREAU CHIEF, THESE DAYS, TASVER E HIND
ORISSA, SAMBALPUR.

October 15, 2011

OCCUPY WALL STREET


OCCUPY WALL STREET A GLOBAL ISSUE 15/10/2011

OCCUPY WALL STREET is a people powered movement for democracy that began in America on September 17 with an encampment in the financial district of New York City. Inspired by the Egyptian Tahrir Square uprising and the Spanish acampadas, we vow to end the monied corruption of our democracy.

Occupy Wall Street’s first media problem was that there was no media. On September 21, Keith Olbermann chastised New York newspapers and major news outlets for ignoring the demonstrations in their first five days. New York City police limited access to parts of Wall Street for a third day after a weekend of protests targeting financial firms. At least seven people were arrested since the demonstrations began.
The size of the protest, dubbed “OccupyWallStreet,” dwindled to about 200 people early today near Chase Manhattan Plaza, down from 1,000 on Sept. 17.

Transparently and precisely, Occupy Wall Street has struck a chord with those most disenchanted with our failing economic system. But the rocketing of the movement into America's public consciousness also comes with built-in challenges. Many of the same politicians complicit in creating the corporate deregulation frenzy that magnified the crisis are now trying to co-opt Occupy Wall Street into a blame game. The very bastards who rewarded the drunken greed that systematically ravished the middle class, gutted our environmental standards, started obscene wars over dwindling resources, and sent our economy spiraling out of control are now calling Occupy Wall Street a "watershed moment" and incorporating it into their re-election campaign rhetoric.

Yet part of the brilliance of the leaderless Occupy Wall Street is that the movement is too savvy, too brutally honest, and too fed up to allow that to happen. While their lack of immediate demands has enraged media pundits and confused those watching at home accustomed to quick digestible sound bites, the Occupy movement, through daily direct democracy dialogue, and sometimes painfully slow but thoughtful consensus decision-making, has not allowed its vision to be clouded by the media's pressures to get to the point.
That's because what's being discussed on Wall Street and around the country cannot be distilled into a single issue. It's not just "End the Fed" or "make the rich pay more taxes." It's about changing the fundamental values that dictate how our society works. As one painted cardboard sign on Occupied Wall Street reads: "The system was never broken, it was built this way." Unless we, as a human species, begin to tackle the question of how to live sustainably and in harmony with nature, we may not have much time left. The converging catastrophes of climate change, peak oil, over-population and the bursting of the debt bubble are all staring us in the face. Is it too much to fathom that the solution to this global economic crisis might lie in the very demise of the system that created it? That's what the Occupy Wall Street folks are getting at. That this is our global Easter Island moment and we don't have much time to turn it around. That idea doesn't always make a snappy media sound bite, and it will take years of hard work to accomplish, but there are signs that what's happening now all over the country and around the world has lit a fuse.

Four demonstrators were arrested today for wearing masks in violation of a law that bars two or more participants from doing so, and one was arrested for jumping a police barrier and resisting arrest, Paul Browne, a police spokesman, said in an e- mailed statement. Two masked protesters were arrested Saturday for trying to enter a building used by Bank of America Corp. (BAC), he said.

Protesters are urging President Obama to establish a commission to end the influence money has over there representatives in Washington. Some groups have asked people to occupy the Wall Street for a few month.

People are gatherings in streets around the world under the umbrella of Occupy Wall Street. I was pondering with some ideas that the struggle would figure out what Occupy Wall Street wants. In simple word “ The Rebellion will not stop until the corporate state is extinguished.
It means I would subscribe to my view that the use of corporate money to create government policies that abuse , the poor, elderly , sick , infirmed, young man , pollute the environment , comply people to go into debt , pay huge medical bills and cripple the education, kill people in imperial wars. These definitions makes me feel , that whether the OCCUPY WALL STREET see any societal benefit in the jobs and vacancies that the corporate would create .

To limit corporate malfunctioning, one must strive to reach of the corporate cash. If OWS anyway achieves that aim, society will continue t enjoy the benefits of the corporate state with fewer of its costs.

SIDDHARTHA SHANKAR MISHRA,
BUREAU CHIEF,
THESE DAYS, TASVER E HIND,
ORISSA, SAMBALPUR

October 14, 2011

ISSUES ON CHILD LABOUR

ISSUES ON CHILD LABOUR 16/10/2011

Child labor in India is a human right issue for the whole world. It is a serious and extensive problem, with many children under the age of fourteen working in carpet making factories, glass blowing units and making fireworks with bare little hands. According to the statistics given by Indian government there are 20 million child laborers in the country, while other agencies claim that it is 50 million.

As per UNICEF child labor means exceeding the time limit of the work based on conditions like age and the work employed. Work that overshadows these norms is considered to be illegal.

India fully subscribe to this universal aspiration. Our Constitution makers had known that India of their vision would not be a reality if the country’s children are not nurtured and educated. Article 24 dealing with prohibition of employment of children in factories and Article 45 relating to provision of free and compulsory education for children bear testimony to this realization. The other provisions relate to prohibition of traffic in human beings and forced labor (Article 23) and certain principles of policy to be followed by the State stipulate that children be secured against exploitation.

Children work for eight hours at a stretch with only a small break for meals. The meals are also frugal and the children are ill nourished. Most of the migrant children who cannot go home, sleep at their work place, which is very bad for their health and development. Seventy five percent of Indian population still resides in rural areas and are very poor. Children in rural families who are ailing with poverty perceive their children as an income generating resource to supplement the family income. Parents sacrifice their children’s education to the growing needs of their younger siblings in such families and view them as wage earners for the entire clan.
Child labor in India is more of a rural than urban phenomenon.

Approximately, 90 per cent of the working children in the rural areas are employed in agriculture and allied activities. The unorganized and informal sectors, both in urban and rural areas, account for almost the entire child labor force. The distribution of child labour in various States appears to indicate certain correlations. States having a larger population living below poverty line have a high incidence of child labour. Similarly, high incidence of child labor is accompanied by high dropout rates in schools. The incidence of child labor is partly linked to the level of socio-economic development of an area and partly to the attitude and approach of parents of the child laborers as a result of socio-economic compulsions. According to the 1991 census, the number of working children in the country was11.28 million.

Children with an age limit of five to eleven years are eligible to work for one hour on wages and for 28 per week of domestic work. All those ranging between 12 to 14 years of age can work only for fourteen hours per week on paid basis. Children with 15 to 17 years of age are allowed to work for forty three hours a week. One out of six children is engaged in child labour. In India as per the statistics by the government and other agencies it varies from 20 million to 50 million. It is more dominant in northern India.

The Ministry of Labor has considered these problems of child labour. It recognizes the need to protect child labor from being forced to work in hazardous conditions that endanger their physical and mental development. It addressed the need to ensure the health and safety of children at the work place recognizing that they must be protected from excessively long working hours. All working children should be provided with sufficient weekly rest periods and holidays.

Apart from the Child Labor (Prohibition & Regulation) Act, 1986, there are legal provisions for working children in other laws such as the Factories Act, 1948, the Mines Act, 1952, the Motor Transport Worker’s Act, 1961, the Beedi and Cigar Workers (Conditions of Employment) Act, 1966, the Plantations Labor Act, 1951 and the Minimum Wages Act, 1948. The Child Labour Act prohibits employment of children (under 14 yrs) in 13 occupations and 57 processes contained in Part A & B of the schedule to the Act. It also lays down penalties for employment of children in violation of the provisions of this Act and regulates the employment of children with respect to working hours, number of holidays, health and safety in work place.

Where children are forced to work at low wages and parents lose their child for the younger sibling. Innumerable laws have made to stop child labour which includes Indian constitution law of 1986 making it a crime and children below the fourteen years of age prohibited from working. In Kenya the age limit is sixteen years of age which excludes agriculture and domestic work separated from the child labor.

The main concern is with the children working in harmful and hazardous places such as tobacco, chemical, mines and glass factories. Sometimes they have to work day and night keeping themselves confined within the boundary walls. What is outside world like? They have no clues to it! Apart from all this one can easily see them working in households as servants. Cleaning and coping with the domestic work in the house where so called educated and literate people reside. We all need to be aware and raise a voice where ever you see child labor happening be it your college canteen or neighborhood. One voice raised alone can lead to many changes.

These children belong to the slums and poor households be it urban or rural areas. They are supposed to share the financial burden along their parents to run their livelihood. A number of children are often accused of exploitation in all modes. The weaker sex that is girl child are more prone to abuse and exploitation. Behind the term child labor they not only lose their childhood but also the basic and higher education. All the moral, mental and physical development gets hampered. Almost everyone is against the child labor even those who practice this!

Primary education is one of the important responsibilities to be discharged by Municipalities under the Orissa Primary Education Act. Again, to state the reality, even after sixty years after the promulgation of the Constitution, we have not been able to attain full literacy. Of all the different areas of education, primary education is suffering the most. When the Constitution was promulgated, a Directive Principle was laid down in Article 45 which states that the State shall endeavor to provide, within the period of ten years from the commencement of the Constitution, for free and compulsory education for all children until they complete the age of fourteen years. This has not been achieved yet. The 86th Amendment to the Constitution effected in the year 2002 deleted this Article 45, and substitut ed it with new Article 45 which lays down that the State shall endeavour to provide early childhood care and education for all children until they complete the age of six years. The amendment has made Right to Education a Fundamental Right under Article 21A. This Article lays down that the State shall provide free and compulsory education to all children of the age of six to fourteen years in such manner as the State may, by law, determine. In the year 2009 we passed the Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education Act 2009. All these laws have however not been implemented with the spirit with which they ought to have been. We have several national initiatives in operation such as the Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan, District Primary Education Programme, and the Universal Elementary Education Programme to name a few. However, the statistical data shows that we are still far away from achieving the goal of full literacy.


Nobel laureate Shri Amartya Sen commented on our tardy progress in the field of basic education in his Article `The Urgency of Basic Education' in the seminar Right to Education-Actions Now held at New Delhi on 19.12.2007 as follows:-
“India has been especially disadvantaged in basic education, and this is one of our major challenges today. When the British left their Indian empire, only 12 per cent of the India population was literate. That was terrible enough, but our progress since independence has also been quite slow. This contrasts with our rapid political development into the first developing country in the world to have a functioning democracy.”





If this is put to an end it might increase further the poverty situation. The wages they are getting out the work is serving their basic needs. If something is wrong is then it is the exceeding and exploitation of laws made for protecting the child from exploitation. Out of cheap labor rates people opt for small children to work for them. A time out of poor family condition they are forced to work. Child trafficking has also added to the child labor.

There are many black sheep’s in the society because of whom the laws are not implemented the way they should have been. Furthermore the ignorant and illiterate parents who are unaware of the consequences of child labor. Day by day rising economic needs and growing population adds more to it. If we actually want to stop the child labor we need to implement all law properly.

“ In spite of the various campaigns by government sensitizing the public on the booming child labor problem in India, the problem is still seeing an upswing. According to a report by an NGO, there were an estimated 6 crore child laborers in the country. If that was not all, approximately Rs 1.2 lakh crore is generated as black money through child labor every year in India.

The report presented by an NGO, Bachpan Bachao Andolan stated government estimates claiming that Rs 15 is spent on a child laborers per day with the equivalent cost of an adult worker is Rs 115 per day according to the National floor wage. Bhuwan Ribhu, a lawyer with the NGO commented, “That is a difference of Rs 100 per labourer. With the average number of working days in a year being about 200, the employers profit by Rs 1.2 lakh crore by employing child labour." (Courtesy New.oneindia.in)”.

The basic free education should be made compulsory and we need to insure it again and again. Right to education should become an actual right. We cannot let the futures of nation- the children fighting and struggling with society merely for their lives.
The Government is determined to eliminate all forms of child labour by 2020. Indeed, poverty eradication combined with educational reforms to provide free or affordable access to quality education with an interesting, innovative and job-oriented curriculum for all can effectively eliminate child labour once and for all.

There are 5 lakh formal schools for a population of 239 million; 14% have no school building; 38% have no blackboards; 30% have only one teacher for the whole school; 58% have no drinking water. The result 4 out of 5 children don t even enters a school and 70% of children drop out before they enter Class IV.

If we cannot take big steps let’s start with the small ones. This is the drastic change we need to join hands together for. Say no to child labor.

SIDDHARTHA SHANKAR MISHRA,
BUREAU CHIEF, THESE DAYS, TASVER E HIND
ORISSA, SAMBALPUR

October 13, 2011

Hirakud Dam probe denied by the Government



HIRAKUD DAM



No Plan from Govrnernment of Orissa and rejecting the Government panel to probe for mishandling 13/10/2011


Hirakud Dam Project is built across river Mahanadi at about 15 Kms. upstream of Sambalpur town in State of Orissa. This happens to be the first post independence major multipurpose river valley project in India. The dam is 6 Kms from NH 6 . The nearest rail head is Hirakud railway station (S.E.R) which is 8 Kms from the dam site.

The project provides 1,55,635 Hects of Kharif and 1,08,385 Hects of Rabi irrigation of Sambalpur, Bargarh, Bolangir, and Subarnpur. The water released through power house irrigates further 436000 Hects of CCA in Mahanadi delta. Installed capacity for power generation in 307.5 MW through its two power houses at Burla , at the right bank to and Chiplima , at 22 Kms downstream of dam . Besides the project provides flood protection to 9500 sq Kms of delta area in district of Cuttack and Puri.

After high floods of 1937, Sir M. Visveswararya gave proposal for detailed investigation for storage reservoirs in Mahanadi basin to tackle problem of floods in Mahanadi delta, In 1945, it was decided under the chairmanship of Dr. B.R.Ambedkar, the then Member of Labour in Govt. of India that the potentialities of river Mahanadi should be fruitfully and expenditiously investigated for multipurpose use. Central Water- ways Irrigation and Navigation Commission took up the work. The foundation stone of Hirakud Dam was laid by Sir Howthrone Lewis, the then Governor of Orissa on 15th March 1946. The project report was submitted to Government in June 1947. The first batch of concrete was laid by Pandit Jawaharalal Neheru on 12th April 1948. The project was formally inaugurated by Prime Minister Pt. Jawaharlal Nehru on 13th, January 1957. Power generation along with supply for irrigation started progressively from 1956 and full potential was achieved by 1966.

Allegations of mismanagement in storing and release of water from the Hirakud dam, which resulted in the high floods last month, have landed the State Government in a sticky situation with Governor Murlidhar Chandrakant Bhandare seeking a report on it.

What has come as a major embarrassment for the Government is the Governor’s advice to set up a committee to probe whether the rule curve for Hirakud reservoir was violated. The Governor had sought a clarification following media reports and the Opposition charge that the devastating flood was man-made.
The Government has, however, rejected the allegations on water mismanagement at the dam. It has informed the Governor that there is no need to set up a new committee to enquire whether the guideline for discharge of water from the reservoir was maintained.

Instead, the Government has said the existing technical team would look into the implementation of rule curve for the reservoir. Chief Secretary Bijay Kumar Patnaik told mediapersons that the Government on Wednesday submitted its reply to Raj Bhavan in response to Bhandare’s query. He said the technical team, headed by the engineer-in-chief (EIC) of Water Resources department, would investigate the alleged violation of rule curve.

The technical committee was set up in 2009 and there is no need for a new panel, official sources said.
Bhandare had reportedly suggested setting up of a technical committee comprising members from Central Water Commission (CMC), advocates, a woman and some technical persons.

The existing committee could consult technical persons from outside the State if required, the Government said in its report to the Governor. The existing committee already has members with expertise in water management in Mahanadi river system, the Government said, adding that it has also been asked to suggest steps to control flood in Mahanadi river system in a more effective manner.

Claiming that rule curve was not violated, the report said water level at Hirakud reservoir was 78 per cent of the reservoir level on September 5 as against the prescribed guidelines of maintaining it within 65 per cent to 91 per cent.
The State Government virtually rejected the Governor's suggestion for an investigation by an expert panel under the chairmanship of a former chief of the Central Water Commission into the alleged mismanagement of flood waters at the Hirakud reservoir that, according to the Opposition, had triggered devastating floods in the down stream of the Mahanadi system in September.

The Governor's advisory to Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik came in the wake of allegations by some experts and opposition parties that the disaster, which killed over 80 persons and affected over five million people in the recent floods, could have been avoided.

However, the Water Resources Department being looked after by the Chief Minister had four days back sent a report to Governor Muralidhar Chandrakant Bhandare that there was no necessity of formation of a fresh technical committee for probe on management of flood waters at the Hirakud reservoir as the existing committee, formed under the chairmanship of the Engineer-in-Chief of the Water Resources Department with the approval of the Governor in 2009, still holds good.

Talking to mediapersons, Chief Secretary Bijay Kumar Patnaik refuted the allegation that there was violation of "curve rule" in the management of flood waters in the Hirakud Dam.

He said the report to the Governor was comprehensive with details of rainfall, inflow and outflow of water at the Hirakud reservoir and related water management.

Patnaik said more numbers of gates were opened in the Hirakud Dam following inflow from the upper catchment in Chhatisgarh that resulted in the floods in the downstream of the Mahanadi system.

He clarified that during the period in question _ from September 1 to 5 _ the water level was between 65 to 91 per cent of the reservoir capacity. During the period the water stored in the reservoir was 78 per cent of the capacity which was under the approved limit of the "curve rule", he said.
The present committee had also endorsed the management of water at Hirakud during the period, Patnaik said.

He said the existing committee was asked to investigate the alleged mismanagement at the Hirakud Dam. If required the panel can take more expert members from the CWC and other related fields, he said.

The committee has also been instructed to recommend to the Government on better management of the Hirakud waters on a long-term basis in future.

SIDDHARTH SHANKAR MISHRA,
BEARUE CHIEF,
THESE DAYS, TASVER E HIND,
ORISSA , SAMBALPUR