Monday, November 21, 2005
Press release on the Nov 20 convention
Please find below the proceedings of the students' convention on 20th Nov. 2005 held in the Utkal University auditorium.
20th November 2005 will be remembered as an unusual day in the annals of student politics in Orissa. Student leaders across party lines got together in a single forum in the students' convention organized by Agamee Odisha and Utkal University Teachers' Association to raise their unanimous voice for the setting up of the National Institute of Science in Orissa. More than 300 student leaders and students across the state congregated in the auditorium of Utkal University to demand for a centrally funded national level institute in Orissa and urged the UPA Government to give Orissa its due which was promised by the previous Government at the center. This is also for the first time in decades that President BJD student's wing Mr. Arun Sahu, President student Congress Mr. Jinesh Das, President A.I.S.F. Mr. Jyoti Ranjan Mohapartra, and President student Janata (S) wing Mr. Amiya Pandav shared the same platform and shared the same dream for the interest of Orissa – this time to demand for the setting up of NIS in Orissa.
The stage was set to press the need for reminding the Central Government of its previous declaration in 2003 to establish 4 NISs in India in which Orissa was one of the locations. However, a recent declaration by the Government overlooks the previous decision and the Prime Minister has recently announced the setting up of two IISERs in Kolkata and Pune. Since the objective of both the IISER and NIS is the same, this declaration has pained many Oriyas across the country and abroad. While NROs have launched e-signature campaigns, and a blog (http://iiser.blogspot.com) has been created by Prof. Chitta Baral to highlight and demand the issue of NIS, Agamee Odisha has taken up the cause to sensitize and educate, and in turn also create a strong voice for demanding the NIS, within the state and in the national level. The students' convention on 20 th November was second in the series of events planned by Agamee Odisha. The first event was organized on 6th Nov. where intellectuals had raised their demand for this cause. In yesterday's event all the student leaders, congregated in the students' convention, felt the need for all Oriyas – intellectuals, politicians, media and the broader civil society, to get together forgetting their personal differences to fight for the cause of the state. Orissa has been subjected to negligence by the center but Oriyas have also never asserted their rights, reflected Mr. Arun Sahu. Mr. Amiya Pandav pressed for the need of going to Delhi to press on the UPA chairperson and Prime Minister for the cause. Mr. Jinesh Das declared that since their party is in power in the center, he would do all that required to get things done at New Delhi. Mr. Jyoti Ranjan Mohapatra also reiterated the unconditional support of his wing for the cause. The convention was addressed by eminent Professor Digambar Mishra of Alabama State University, Justice M. Papanna, President of NALCO employees' association Mr.L.M. Pattanaik, and noted environmentalist Mr. Nadia Chand Kanungo, all of whom stressed upon the need for a non-violent and peaceful demonstration for the cause.
The meeting was addressed by many other student leaders from B.J.B. college, R.D. college, Bhawanipatna college, Khurda P.N . College, Jagatsinghpur college, Alaka college, Basudevpur college, Atalabihari college and Vani Vihar. Student leaders from nearly 80 colleges from the districts of Cuttack, Khurda, Puri, Jagatsinghpur, Malkangiri, Balasore, Bhadrak, Phulbani, Kendrapara, Keonjhar, Jajpur, Dhenkanal, Angul, etc. participated in the event. The convention was presided over by the Secretary of Utkal University Teachers' Association Dr. S.K.Tripathy. Mr. Sudarshan Das and Ms. Supriti Mishra of Agamee Odisha also placed their views on the issue. Mr. Chinmaya Jena, Mr. Prashant Samantaray, Mr. Dillip Savat, helped in the coordination of the event from the student side. Mr. Priyadarshi Mishra, Mr. Pradipta Nayak, Mr. Gadadhar Pradhan and Mr. Deba Parija were also present in the event among others.
The following resolutions were taken by the students:
1. Memorandum to the Prime Minister; Deputy Chairman, Planning Commission; Chairman, Scientific Committee (to the P.M.); UPA, Chairperson; Chief Minister, and Governor (the process was already started yesterday).
2. Postcard campaign by each college.
3. Peaceful protest for one hour before the Governor's House.
4. Innovative protest like cleaning the college campus or painting of college wall.
5. Protest at New Delhi (if none of the above forms of protest yield result).