Speechless Congress Team in Kandhmal

published on January 14, 2008

Cong team stumped in K’mal over question on MP Nayak

Pioneer News Service | Phulbani

Tribals in Kandhamal urged the Congress delegation to the violence-torn district to take action against party’s Rajya Sabha member Radhakanta Nayak for his alleged questionable role behind the communal strife.

In fact, secretary of the Kandhamal Zilla Kui Samaj Coordination Committee (KZKSCC) Lamobodar Kanhar has all along been demanding action against Nayak and BJD leader Padmanabha Behera, who was dropped from the Naveen Patnaik Cabinet in the wake of the violence in his native district, Kandhamal.

Both Behera and Nayak belong to the Pana community listed as Scheduled Castes (SC), while the Kuis are Scheduled Tribes. The tribals allege that both have joined hands to snatch away the birthright of the tribals. They allege that Nayak has joined hands with a trumped-up body, Phulbani Kui Janakalyan Sangh, and connived to record Kui language speakers of SC community as tribals.

The Congress delegation, led by PCC president Jaydeb Jena, faced huge embarrassment during its two-day visit to Kandhamal due to the tribals’ charges against Nayak. And Jena was speechless over the issue. In fact, the State Congress leaders are not in a position to clear the stand of the All India Congress Committee (AICC), which is the decision-making body of the party.

Nayak, being an MP, his role in sidelining the tribals in Kandhamal should have been discussed at the highest forum of the party, said a senior member of the delegation.

KZKSCC has demanded that Nayak’s role in the district be inquired into by the CBI. Questions are raised in several quarters that while Nayak is facing a CBI probe on corruption charges against him as a former IAS officer, how the Congress is tolerating him as an MP.

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