Subhas Chandra Pattanayak
The historic fast unto death in demanding use of Oriya as official language as per the original Official Language Act 1954 has reached the third day. Poet Gajanan Mishra is a senior citizen, who, as per his declaration, is on fast-unto-death since July 1. Poet Sanjib Parida of Dhenkanal and poetess Madhumita Samal of Bhubaneswar have joined him since the first day of the fast and ORISSA MATTERS chief Subhas Chandra Pattanayak has observed solidarity fast on the second day, i.e. July 2.
Oriya Bhasa Surksha Samiti is organizing the language movement.
On the third day, Sri Krushna Chandra Jagaddev, President of Pujya Puja Samsad, has joined Gajanan babu in Fast unto death when Dr. Bijay Prusti, Dr. Kulamani Nayak,Khageswar Bal, Aparna Nayak, Priyanath Acharya, Santos Pands and former government Chief Whip Ajaya Jena have begun their solidarity fast. The list of Oriya poets and authors and Oriya nationalists who are eager to join the fast for the mother tongue is flowing in from all parts of Orissa.
By the second day, the venue has been respectfully visited by famous Linguist Dr. Devi Prasanna Pattanayak, poet Ramakant Rath, poet Jagannath Prasad Das, poet Amiya Pandab, poet Umakant Raut, Dr. Shubhashree Lenka, Secretary of Orissa Sahitya Academy Ashwini Kumar Mishra, Advisor of the Oriya wing of Central Sahitya Academy Gourhari Das, Member of Central Sahitya Academy Bonoj Tripathy, Working President of Sachivalay Lekhaks Sangha Rasanand Sahu, Its Secretary Kamal Kumar Mohanty, Bhuban Mohan Mohanty, eminent social activist Rituparna Mohanty, political heavyweight Niranjan Patnaik, Ama Odisha Chief Soumya Ranjan Patnaik, CPI (M) leaders Janarddan Pati, Ali Kishore Patnaik, Santosh Das, AAP convener Dhanadakant Mishra, Samajvadi Party State President Rabi Behera, former MLA and All India People’s Forum State Convener Radhakant Sethi, Kalinga Sena Chief Hemanta Rath, Dr. Karttikeswar Patra, Ajay Jena, Arya Kumar Jnanendra, freedom fighter Bhavani Charan Pattanaik, Gandhian Padma Charan Nayak, former minister Panchanan Kanungo, former central Minister Braja Kishore Tripathy, BJD MP Baishnav Charan Parida, Abhay Samantray, Prof. Biswaranjan, Prof. Natabar Satpathy, Prof. Pabak Kanungo, Yantrana Parikshit, Kabita Parida, Social activist Devendra Kumar Das, Eminent Journalist Barendra Krushna Dhal, Pradyumna Satpathy, Tusarkant Satpathy, Pradosh Patnaik, Prasanta Patnaik, Kedar Mishra and many others, who have also pronounced their all out support to the cause espoused by Sri Gajanan Mishra.
When on the first day, Sambad Editor Soumyaranjan Patnaik, Subartta Editor Pradyumna Satpathy, ORISSA MATTERS chief Subhas Chandra Pattanayak, Prof. Biswaranjan, Rabi Behera and others pointed out what unfathomable harm has been done to Orissa by the State Government’s distance from the language of the people, and called upon Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik to take immediate tuition in Oriya language to speak in Oriya and to understand Oriya so that he can evaluate his own administration by interacting with the people of Orissa, while stressing on compulsory use of Oriya in all spheres of administration, on the second day, Sri Barendra Krushna Dhal, Janarddan Pati, Santosh Das, Ali Kishore Patnaik, Dhanadakant Misgra, Radhakant Sethy, echoed the same feeling of the people of Orissa.
All the speakers on both the days supported the Samiti agenda for transaction of all official works in Oriya language including writing of all litigation related matters including police reports, reports of doctors asked by police or court to examine an accused or victim of crimes, all communication from Tahsils on people’s landed properties, from Blocks on welfare programs, from MPs and MLAs on their local area development funds. The Samiti’s other demands include appointment of Oriya language teachers immediately in every educational institutes, creation of official websites in Oriya, development of easily usable Oriya software for every net user to help people know of their government, making Oriya the only medium of tests for employment in Orissa, reservation of at least 75% posts in all IT companies and industries for candidates from Orissa and action against the non-Oriya officer who in a shrewd and unauthorized way has asked colleges and universities to make English the mandatory medium of education.
Your Rule is Illegal, dear CM
Dear Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik, the Constitution of India has stipulated under Article 345 that English language shall continue to be used for those official purposes within the State for which it was being used immediately before the commencement of this Constitution until the Legislature of the State frames its own Official Language Act.
Immediately after independence, in the very first Assembly specially conveyed for celebration of the First Utkal Divas after independence, it was unanimously resolved by our founding fathers that when a new Government would be formed on basis of the Constitution when India would become a Republic, the same Legislative Assembly must enact without delay the Official Language Act to make Oriya the mandatory medium of administration.
And, as per this inviolable direction of the founding fathers on April 1, 1948, after the new Assembly was elected in the new Republic, “The Official Language Act” was created and enforced in 1954, wherein it was stipulated that Oriya is “to be used for all or any of the official purposes of the State of Orissa”.
Your father, Mr. Naveen Patnaik, sabotaged this Act by amending it in 1963 to the effect that English would be used “in addition to Oriya” as official language in matters of the Assembly.
Administration being answerable to Assembly, the amendment helped the non-Oriya mandarins and Oriya officers eager to gain benefits by ingratiating with your father, to replace Oriya with English, the mischief from which, people of Orissa have not yet been able to extricate themselves.
In your regime, the situations has become so unmanageable for the children of the soil, when its natural resources are being grabbed by non-Oriyas, and everywhere the officials and politicians basking under your powers have emerged as scourges beyond control. Please understand the predicaments of the people.
What the Constitution says
It seems, you do not understand the Law and therefore you are making mockery of the word ‘Law’ by always saying, “law shall take its own course”. Look at Article 210 (2) that says, if any State fails to enact its Official Language Act, after 15 years of promulgation of the Constitution, English shall be automatically discarded from use in offices. Read the provision. It is written in so simple language that a kid can understand it. I hope, you shall understand. It says, “(2) unless the Legislature of the State by law otherwise provides, this article shall, after the expiration of a period of fifteen years from the commencement of this Constitution, have effect as if the words “or in English” were omitted therefrom”
Please understand that, had Orissa not even enacted the Act of 1954, on expiration of 15 years from January 26, 1950, English would have been quashed as a language to be used in administration. So, by ruling the State in English, you have been running Orissa in an absolutely illegal manner.
Amend yourself. Stop preening and straight come to the place where the best of beloved children of this soil, have been observing fast to atone the sin of making you the CM to the total detriment of their beloved language; discard your ego of elitism and for the first time in your life, if you so want, interact with the people that are ready to sacrifice their lives for their mother tongue. Salute them for their patriotism, their nationalism, their love for their brethren disadvantaged by your non-Oriya rule. AND DECLARE ORIYA AS THE ONLY LANGUAGE OF ADMINISTRATION OF ORISSA.
Mark these pictures, because, if you have any difficulty in understanding their language or voices, the pictures would silently depict of the pain of their hearts, in as simply way as you can understand.
These are the people whom you have put in slow-starvation by devising the method of one-rupeean rice, They do not know English. When your police entangles them in false cases, that do not know what the police papers say. When they get any communication from Tahsil or Block offices, they fail to understand what is written, They fail to read the English notifications, if any, on MP or MLA local area development funds, they fail to tell their grievances to officialdom that runns in English, If they get a summon from a court, they fail to understand the same. They are forced to engage lawyers who file and fight their cases in English and when the judgements after wastage of a lot of times emanate, that being in English, they fail to understand what the court says and again run into the trap of lawyers without knowing what else to do. They want all the legal matters be noted in their mother tongue Oriya, so that, they can know at least what has become their fate.
Therefore, dear Chief Minister, amidst many other reasons, they had come to the venue of the fast in hundreds of numbers.
I will post here some pictures of the fasting area so that you can know that the poor people forced to slow-starvation by your administration run by non-Oriyas in English language are not the only ones that have expressed solidarity with Gajanan babu, but highly educated Oriyas whom you can never vie with in knowledge and education, are also with the fasting friends. They include Linguist Dr. Devi Prasanna Pattanayak, Bhavani Patnaik, one of your father’s closest friends, and Adhyapak Biswaranjan and Pradyumna Satpathy, the top two orators, and scores of top intellectuals of Orissa. You may see in these pictures, Barendra Krushna Dhal, Prasanta Patnaik, Gourahari Das, Kedar Mishra – men of letters and journalists of eminence. You may see here Sri Soumya Ranjan Patnaik, the ablest editor of Orissa, who, through Ama Odisha and Sambad Sahitya Ghar has given birth to a new era of literature activism. You will see here many political heavyweights expressing their solidarity. You may see here selfless social activists like Padma Charan Nayak, Tusarkant Satpathy. You may see Sankar Parida and his tireless troop of friends who have given Gajanan Babu’s endeavor the shape of a movement. And, the movement has become so speaking that even your party MP Baishnav Parida has come to the venue of fasting and stripped you layer by layer for your inability to understand why Oriya should be the only official language in Orissa. Look at the pictures:
These pictures are just a few samples of Orissa standing one with Sri Gajanan Mishra to make Oriya the official language of Orissa, which despite the law of 1954, your father and you have not allowed to be.
Never forget that the lives of Gajanan Mishra and his friends in fast are more precious than your regime.
Save his and his friends by accepting their demands.
If you don’t bother about people of Orissa, wake up Mr.Naveen Patnaik in your own interest. This time you are facing a totally different class of foes and they are Orissa’s language lovers. Wake up from the ring of non-Oriyas, act like an Oriya with love for the mother tongue, do not endanger Orissa any further and, it may be so, if you wake up to this call, you may no more require to depend on sophomoric sycophants and anti-Oriya non-Oriyas to stay in power.