Category Archives: News

Day After Odisha Girl Pushed Out of Train by TTE, Railway on Denial Mode

A day after a minor girl was pushed out of running train allegedly by a female TTE for travelling without ticket, the railway authorities continue to be on denial mode. Besides feigning ignorance about identity of the TTE, they have termed the incident as an accident.

Apparently, this is not the first time that a ticketless traveller has been subjected to unruly conduct of the TTEs or GRP personnel. Thirteen-year-old Shankar Singh, a resident of Vedvyas slum in Rourkela lost his right hand and a leg after he was pushed off the Mumbai-Howrah Geetanjali Express on July 2, 2008 by a TTE.

Three months later, a 20-year-old vegetable vendor died after he was allegedly pushed off a running train by GRP personnel and succumbed to his injuries as they failed to extort `150 from him.

According to sources, TTEs seem to go on an overdrive during Odia month of Shravan when hundreds of people take train journey from interior parts of the district to the city to visit Shiva temples.

If found without ticket, the passengers are pulled up and hefty amount of fine demanded. However, the matter is resolved if the passengers shell out money to the TTEs without a proper receipt being issued.

In Monday’s incident, a female TTE identified as B Naik pushed 17-year-old Rekha Naik from Howrah-Jagdalpur Samaleswari Express near Sambalpur Road railway station.

The Sambalpur Railway Division feigned ignorance about identity of the female TTE and termed the incident as an accident. On the other hand, the GRP has registered a case against “unknown” person under Sections 341, 325 and 323 IPC over the incident.

Meanwhile, the girl has been shifted to SCB Medical at Cuttack.

Sambalpur University introduces 2 new UGC-approved courses

Sambalpur University has introduced two new courses, Post Graduate Diploma in Human Rights Education and Certificate Course in Human Rights Education from this academic session.

The University Grant Commission (UGC) has approved both the courses. While the duration of thePG Diploma in Human Right Education is one year, a student will complete the Certificate Course in Human Rights Education in six months. Both the courses have 16 seats each.

The two courses will run in the PG Department of Political Science of the University. And along with managing the course, the faculty of the PG Department of political science will also teach the students in these two courses. Moreover, the authority is also planning to invite human right activists and guest faculties to teach the students.

“Several cases of Human Rights violation are reported on regular basis. The Western Odisha is a tribal dominated area. One can find many cases of human rights violation, tribal atrocity and woman rights violation in Western part of the state. Similarly, the displacement is also major issue in Western Odisha. And the displacements are also linked with Human Rights. Everyone should be aware about the human rights.

The introduction of these two courses will help in making the people aware about human rights and producing professional human right activists,” said a teacher of Post Graduate Department of Political Science, Rajat Kujur.

“Any graduate, who has secured 45 per cent marks in aggregate, is eligible to apply for the admission into these courses. Apart from the class room teaching, priority will also be given to gain knowledge through field visit in these courses,” he said.

Talking on the job opportunity, Kujur said that linkages with the industries and non governmental organisation would be developed to create job opportunity for the students of these two courses. This year, the University has received only 45 application forms for 32 seats of these two courses this year.

Sources in the university said, “There are 24 Post Graduate course in the University. And the University has received 30788 application forms for the 578 seats of the 24departments for the 2015-16 academic session.”

“The PG Diploma in Human Rights Educational and the Certificate Course in Human Rights Education are valuable courses. However, because of the lack of propagation, the two courses received poor response this year. Butmore number of students will apply for admission into these courses in the coming years,” said a student.


Inter-state airline operation from Bhubaneswar

The Odisha Government has given the green light to Air Odisha to start inter-state airline operations from Bhubaneswar to Rourkela, Sambalpur and Jeypore.

The company has decided to begin the flight operations by July end and fixed the airfare at Rs 2,000 per person in all three routes. However, the fare could be increased in future.

According to Air Odisha Director Trideeb Rout, the company has already put a nine-seater plane (excluding Pilot and Co-Pilot) Cessna 208 Caravan on stand-by, which is ready to fly any time.

The Bhubaneswar-Jeypore flight will take 1:30 hours, while Bhubaneswar-Sambalpur will take 1:15 hours. Similarly, it will take 1:05 hours to reach Rourkela from Bhubaneswar.

In the future, Air Odisha will expand its operations to Jharsuguda and Nuapada. Meanwhile, the Odisha Government has decided to provide ambulance, fire tenders and other security services to Air Odisha to conduct its operations smoothly.

Police complaint against Sona Mahapatra and Rituraj Mohanty

New turn to the controversy about the remix of sambalpuri song “Rangabati”, the BJP youth has lodged a police complaint at Sambalpur against Sona Mahapatra and Rituraj Mohany who sang the remix version of “Rangabati”.

Sambalpur ASP Sushil Panigrahi ackonledged the lodged complaint and said, after verifying the legal issue over the copyright, police will take action about the case

Coke Studio version of ‘Rangabati’: Weird rendition of cult Oriya song sparks massive outrage

In just 48 hours after being uploaded on YouTube, it had already notched up an incredible five lakh hits by Sunday night when it was aired on MTV. Coke Studio –MTV’s ‘Rangabati’, a re-rendering of the timeless Sambalpuri hit by Sona Mohapatra, Ram Sampath and Rituraj Mohanty is clearly a winner all the way.

But back home in Odisha, where this cult song of the 1970s originated, it was a rage and a cause for outrage in equal measure. Old timers cried ‘blasphemy’ even as Gen Next could not stop dancing to the beats of the fusion version of this super-hit number. On Facebook and Twitter, there were as many people training their guns on Messrs Sona Mohapatra & Co for what they called the ‘rape’ of a ‘classic’ as there were those defending the liberties taken with the original.

Despite the partial credit given to them in the Coke-MTV music video, the lyricist of the original Sambalpuri song Mitrabhanu Gauntia (misspelt as Guintia in the credits) and its composer Prabhudatta Pradhan have slapped legal notices on Hindustan Coca Cola Beverages Pvt Ltd, Hindustan Coca Cola Holdings Pvt Ltd, singer Sona Mohapatra, musician Ram Sampath and co-singer Rituraj Mohanty seeking damages worth Rs 1 crore for alleged violation of copyright.

“Not only have they not taken permission from us; they have made mincemeat of the original song,” says Gauntia.

“It has hurt the feelings of not just me and others involved with the song, but the people of the entire area. No one has the right to fiddle with folk traditions and culture,” said Jitendriya Haripal, the folk singer who shot into national and even international fame for his rendition of the song.

Senior Bhubaneswar-based journalist Priya Ranjan Sahu, a native of Sambalpur, was perhaps speaking for many when he said; “I could only ‘see’ and not ‘hear’ the MTV version because it was an assault to the ears and senses. It has killed the soul, flavour, energy, sweetness and earthiness of the original.”

It is measure of the timeless quality and the foot-tapping beat of the song that even four decades after it hit the music scene, no marriage procession in Odisha is complete without the Rangabati number being played by bands – sometimes twice over – to the accompaniment of frenzied dancing by the old and young. It is the kind of song which would force even the most leaden-footed man on earth to start shaking a leg or two. No wonder its popularity soon crossed the geographical boundaries of Odisha and spread all over India viagra express. ‘Rangabati’ became mandatory fare in marriage processions in places as far off as Delhi and Mumbai.

In contrast, the MTV version has none of the verve and vivacity of the original. Repackaged as it has been for the MTV generation, the Ram Samapth-Sona Mohapatra version lacks the earthiness that made Rangabati special in the first place.

While the outrage over Rangabati was more pronounced in western Odisha where the song had its origins, what made it blasphemous for the average Odia across the state was a rather weird rendition of ‘Bande Utkala Janani’ (misspelt as ‘Jannini’), the state anthem, by Rituraj Mohanty of India’s Raw Star fame, in the third and last part of the 06:57 minute-long video.

The middle of the three-part video is a Tamil fusion song sung by rappers Tony and Rajesh. The promos dub it as ‘a beautiful, bi-lingual conversation between Sambalpuri & Tamil’ (though Sona’s rendition sounds anything but Sambalpuri). “The eternal adoration of the beloved in Rangabati is connected to the love for one’s roots & mother in the Tamil Rap & finally celebrates the love for one’s motherland in Bande Utkal Janini (sic),” says the blurb.

Rituraj can’t understand what the fuss is all about. “Coke-MTV is a huge platform. It would take the song to the world at large. I just don’t understand what is wrong with the song,” he says.

But most Odias find much that is wrong with this music video. They would have perhaps forgiven the fiddling around with Rangabati since it is, at its core, a folk song, though an immensely popular one, and speaks the language of love that most songs of the genre do. It is the liberties taken with the state anthem that has got the goat of most Odias. Given the outrage it has already sparked, it is almost certain that there would be a spate of court cases seeking a ban on it in the days to come.

Beyond the court cases, however, la’ affaire Rangabati reopens the larger debate about the ethics of the ‘remix’ industry. The trend started by Gulshan Kumar in the 1990s has reached a stage where every second song – even TV jingles – is a remix. It is imperative that the debate is settled one way or the other and once and for all.