Orissa, Bengal Protest to Soren's territorial demands
By Akhand in Bhubaneswar
Jharkhand Mukti Morchha(JMM) supremo Shibu Soren's demand for a greater Jharkhand state by carving out three districts each of Orissa and West Bengal elicited heavy protest in the two states.
All political parties excluding congress, which wants the support of the JMM to save the Government in the centre, has strongly oppose the proposal. They even held demonstrations in different part of the state and soren's effiges were burnt.Orissa Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik in a strong reaction said if the UPA government accepted Soren's demand, it would be treated as 'anti-Orissa'. We will oppose the move.
Soren reportedly proposes to Central Government to carve three districts of Orissa Mayurbhanj, Keonjhar and Sundargarh and other three districts of West Bengal — with the present Jharkhand state for ‘Greater Jharkhand’.
Patnaik, chief of Biju Janata Dal, a Regional Party ruling Orissa, Mr. said Orissa's long-standing demand had been for inclusion of Oriya-speaking Sadheikala and Kharasuan areas of Jharkhand in the state. The other political parties in the state were more aggressive in their reaction, saying not an inch of the territory would be given to anyone.
Activists of BJD, Bhanja Sena, Mayurbhanj Suraksha Samiti and other organisations held demonstrations at Mayurbhanj and Keonjhar district. Soren's effigies were also burnt.
Apart from the chief minister, some ministers in his cabinet also came out with sharp criticism of the JMM chief's demand. They include Golak Bihari Naik and Chaitan Prasad Majhi.
Political parties in Orissa on Tuesday opposed JMM supremo Shibu Soren's proposal for formation of a greater Jharkhand state.
Strongly criticising the proposal, the ruling BJD's Sudergarh district leader, Anand Mohanty, said, "Not an inch from Orissa would be given to the JMM for its proposed Greater Jharkhand state."
Mohanty told that "It is nothing but daydreaming on the part of Soren. The people, irrespective of all political parties, will fight against the proposal."
Sundergarh MP and BJP national vice-president Jual Oram, sharply reacted to the proposal and described it as "quite unfortunate." The BJP, according to Oram, will strongly oppose the move at the national level.
Several leading citizens and sociocultural organisations of the state have condemned the proposal.
Sananda Marandi, BJP MLA from Kuliana Assembly constituency in Mayurbhanj district, has slammed JMM supremo Shibu Soren and Mayurbhanj MP Sudam Marandi for amalgamation of three Orissa districts — Mayurbhanj, Keonjhar and Sundargarh — with the present Jharkhand state for ‘Greater Jharkhand’.
Reacting to the absurd proposal for truncating Orissa for Greater Jharkhand, Sananda reminded Shibu Soren and Sudam Marandi that they were ‘nobody to shape the destiny of the people of Mayurbhanj’.
Sananda in a statement asserted that it was a historical truth that some of the areas like Seraikela, Kharsuan, Dhalbhumgarh, Chakradharpur, Manoharpur now in Jharkhand were part of the erstwhile princely state of Mayurbhanj and due to a political conspiracy these areas were included in Bihar and later in Jharkhand.
Now the two JMM leaders’ move to snatch Mayurbhanj for formation of a Greater Jharkhand has churned the emotions of nearly 22 lakh people of Mayurbhanj, the Kuliana MLA further reiterated.
Protest in WB
In West Bengal, CPI-M's Rabin Mandal said the demand, if accepted, would divide the people of the state. Noting that Soren in his 13-point charter of demands had not only wanted three districts of Bengal carved out but also shifting of the headquarters of the Coal India and DVC in return for support to the UPA in the trust vote, Mandal wanted an all-party resolution on this issue.