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By Manas Ranjan Mahapatra

So helpless a father becomes if his young son dies when he is alive ! My friend Dr Smita Mishra feels that uncertainty has become a habit of the helpless parents.Can one forget a close friend —  even if the relationship has faded away?

This was the opinion expressed by a very close friend :— “One can and should forget the memory of a ‘person’ —  even if once he had been a major mentor or a lover or a buddy closely associated in major life-events —  if the relationship turned into a disruption or dysfunctionality in course of life. In fact, one need not make a conscious endeavour; the obliteration of memory will come on its own natural process.”

I’m not yet able to accept this opinion despite a long cogitation. Such a ‘person’ remains in a place in my heart (mind) and memory; and I still remember the positive aspects of the erstwhile relationship even though the relationship can’t be revived any more. Yes, I do sometimes think that the course of events could have gone better.

If I say that I have been moving along as if such a person never existed and as if major events of my life associated with him never occurred, it would be an unconsciously-uttered ‘untruth’ or  an unconsciously-manifested  ‘cruelty’ / ‘ingratitude’.

Maybe, our learned friends will provide some counsel on the basis of their experience and realization. Senior poet Rajendra Kishore Panda feels this.

But,I am not in competition with anybody, but why are people happy to ignore me time and again ? Life is like a dice.No matter in which direction it rolls. But ,It will surely take you some steps forward.

31 years ago on this day I joined as Odia Language Editor of NBT,India when NBT had less than 50 Odia books, all translations and people in the state were unaware of the organisation !

And, when I took over in 2001 as Head of National Centre for Children’s Literature it had only 2000 Readers Clubs and I ended up at 2.00 Lakhs in 2020.But, my efforts went in vain !

I have relentlessly worked for three decades for promotion of Children’s Literature.As Renowned Author and Storyteller Ramendra Kumar feels about my contribution to the field :

‘Great job. You have done amazing work and we all know that !’

But, he can’t reward me with my favourite apples.Now all the good quality apples are grabbed by Adani and in malls of the cities, it is sold at more than 250 rupees. Only the defective ones are available for other vendors that are sold in streets.This is the new Sabka Vikas..National vested interest !
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On the proposed FCA 1980 amendment :

1. The Public Notice inviting comments and suggestions on proposed amendments to the Forest (Conservation) Act, 1980 issued on 02 October 2021 by Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change giving only 15 days notice is mischievous as the proposed amendments have serious implications for forests, wildlife, livelihood, forest dwellers, farmers etc. Therefore, this has to be extended to at least 60 days to enable informed discussions amongst forest fringe villages.

2. Significantly , the proposed amendments completely ignores the existence of Forest Rights Act 2006. This is deliberate and is condemned. This indicates an anti-people intent, particularly anti forest dwellers. The Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change in 2009 itself assessed that the Forest Rights Act 2006 would require handing over 40 million hectares to village level institutions. Therefore, the most important amendment should have been to incorporate the provisions of Forest Rights Act 1980 into the Forest Conservation Act 1980, particularly the Gram Sabhas as the authority over the forest lands determined by them as Community Forest Resource under Section 3(1)(i) read with Section 5 of Forest Rights Act 2006 for protection, conservation and management. Therefore they are the primary authority to decide whether any part of the forest should be diverted or used for any purposes, whether non-forestry or forestry and how they should be managed. The Gram Sabhas are now legally required to develop the Forest Management Plan replacing the Working Plan of the Forest Department.

3. The proposed amendments clearly indicate the intent underlying them is more to facilitate diversion of forest lands than to conserve them. These amendments are likely to pave the way for business houses appropriating the forest lands more easily. This will lead to rampant violation of forest rights of forest dwellers as Gram Sabha consent is not being included in the proposed amendment. This will pose a serious hurdle to conserve and promote the forests and a gross violation of the 1988 national forest policy.

If you raise your voice ,you may be branded as a leftist. Left bashing has been a popular game for half baked intellectuals whose sole objective in life is to hanker after name, fame, power and awards only. In the process, they act as agents of the reactionary bureaucrats and anti people, anti national parties and exploitation oriented corporates..

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