ONI Bureau: There were reports of BJD workers (alleged Biju Yuva Vahini members) indulging in violence in many parts of Odisha in the recent weeks. However, for the first time, they were assaulted while trying to sabotage the Gondia Samabesa in Dhenkanal which was held on various local issues.
The massive ‘Jana Samabesha’ was held in Gondia by Dhenkanal Swabhiman Surakshya Manch led by former MLA Nabin Nanda. While the primary demand has been Sub-Division status for Gondia, there are other demands such as road infrastructure, healthcare, setting up of JMFC Court, Model School etc. Over 12,000 people attended the rally.
Since former MP Baijayant Panda addressed the rally, several BJD workers reached there and some of them tried to climb the dais, shouting slogans against him and Nabin Nanda while holding bouquets that helped them to enter the meeting place. However, they were confronted by Nabin Nanda’s supporters and other youths present at the rally. Some of the BJD workers were beaten up, which forced others to retreat. The cops intervened to restore calm.
Former MP Baijayant Panda, former MLA Nabin Nanda and other leaders and intellectuals present at the meeting condemned the act of BJD workers and callled them ‘Gunda Bahini’. Jay Panda lamented that late Biju Babu’s name being misused to form groups of hooligans who can be used against political opponents.
“Biju Yuva Vahini has turned a Goonda Vahini of the State government. corruption and hooliganism have increased under the present dispensation. And, Biju Yuva Vahini is the latest addition. It’s sad that late Biju Babu’s name is being misused to promote hooliganism. While law and order has totally collapsed in Odisha, corruption has spread its roots even in Block and Tehsil levels. Let’s unitedly root out corruption & hooliganism and bring change,” said Baijayant Panda.
While speaking to Odisha News Insight, former MLA Nabin Nanda said, “The Jana Samabesa in Gondia was held on local issues. It was not political at all. We are fighting for sub-divisional status in Gondia. Apart from that, we also demand Doctors in Gondia and entire Dhenkanal district, better road infrastructure etc. While the JMFC Court was approved here in 2017, the Government is yet to provide a house for it. Land acquisition for a Model School is not being done. Our fight is to ensure all these demands are met”, he said.
“It’s outrageous and ironical that a politician who was in the Congress earlier and now in BJD, is trying to stall development in Gondia. He mocked my initiatives and targeted me over the years. And, he is now against Sub-Divisional status for Gondia. People in our area won’t tolerate such injustice and hooliganism,” he added.
Apart from Baijayant Panda and Nabin Nanda, several others including Trinath Behera, Malaya Singh, Kunilata Dehury, Mangaraj Barik, Alekha Tripathy, Tankadhar Barik, Diptish Pattnaik, Dilip Nayak, Sumitra Bhoi, Manas Bagh, Indramani Nayak, Manas Sahu, Seshananda Mishra and all Samiti Members of Gondia Block were present at the meeting.