D N Singh
What is further baffling is the sudden expulsion of a Biju Janata Dal legislator and a former minister, Pradeep Panigrahy, for certain ‘anti-people’ activities. And the timing of the sacking throws up questions as whether it is distantly or intimately linked to the forest officer’s alleged misdeeds.
What has played out itself in Odisha politics through a senior forest officer and his son allegedly blowing off all limits of greed to acquire wealth and comfort, is shockingly unacceptable.
Firstly, the forest officer Abhay K Pathak, an IFS and his son Akash K Pathak have been embroiled in a heady mix of politics and greed leading to an unseemly display of caprice to raise heckles in the political circles.
The reported amassing of wealth right from Odisha to Mumbai and Pune and so on, by Pathak, perhaps, needs no further elaboration. Use of chattered flights at several occasions by the Pathaks clearly unveils the unholy designs those had been adopted to reach up to that questionable level.
Vigilance Behaved Like An Ostrich!
It was surely not a fly by night exercise that the Pathaks jacked up their reach and acquisitions . It must have been for last few years rather.
Then, where was the state’s vigil? It was only after the Centre’s nudge that the state owned agencies woke up to a reality that was being perpetrated right under every ones’ nose, including the district authority concerned.
Amid the rots that the Pathaks were in, the BJD legislator Panigrahy got mired in a disreputable controversy which alludes his association with the Pathaks.
However, in a hind sight injection of wisdom the BJD rose to the occasion and discovered the devil within Panigrahy and expelled him from the party on ‘ anti-people ‘ activities as the letter of expulsion read.
Panigrahy On Defensive Ferocity
It may be a personal thing that, Panigrahy’s daughter and Akash Pathak were to marry each other soon. But after being expelled Panigrahy, in a feat of defensive ferocity, the latter not only spewed venom against the BJD leadership but was heard defending the senior Pathak as a ‘very good officer’.
And that was something enough to draw an assumption that, Panigrahy was somehow in league with the Pathaks and with their tin-pot empire.
Thanks to the Tatas for playing the whistle blower role against Akash Pathak who allegedly masqueraded as the company’s managing director and collected humongous amounts of money from the local young job aspirants to get them employment in the company.
About the Author:
DN Singh is a Bhubaneswar-based senior journalist.