Reported by Sri Debendra Bisi
Sambad, June 17, 2016
Saturday, June 18, 2016
Sunday, June 12, 2016
The New Indian Express (Bhubaneswar), June 12, 2016
Published: 12th June 2016 05:36 AM
Last Updated: 12th June 2016 05:36 AM
BHAWANIPATNA: ARCHAEOLOGISTS and historians have resented the damage caused to historical Asurgarh fort near Narla block in Kalahandi district due to deposit of earth in the moat surrounding the fort on three sides. As a part of a water body renovation project, earth was removed from Radhasagar tank and dumped close to the moat. While Narla block officials claimed that the moat is located outside the protected fort area, archaeologists said the moat is an integral part of the protected site and cannot be destroyed.
Asurgarh fort dates back to 4th century BC. An ancient metropolis, it is considered contemporaneous to Sisupalagarh, Ujjain, Ahichatra, Kosambi and other ancient Indian cities. Different antiquities, structures, coins and beads were excavated from the site. Though in 1973 the site wasdeclared protected under the Ancient Monuments and Archeological Sites and Monuments Act, 1958, proper excavation and preservation of monuments are not being done. In fact, the site was considered an emporium of bead-making and trading and its hydraulic system was considered unique. The fort was planned in a rectangular pattern as per Kautalyan principles of ‘Durgabidhana’ and ancient Indian geometrical formula.
The main fortification spreads over 12 hectares and there was also an external fortification, which is now in ruins. At present, the height and width of the fortified wall measure 11 m x 7.5 m and the encircled moat measures 36 m in width. A stone barrage constructed over the Sandol river in the north-west side of the fort to provide controlled water to the fortified area and the moat still exist. Sources said in the wake of water scarcity in Punjipadar village under Mandel gram panchayat adjacent to Asurgarh fort, renovation work of the dried up Radhasagar tank was being carried out using JCB machines.
The excavated earth was dumped in the southern part of Asurgarh moat. This led to filling up of the moat by nearly 40 per cent on the southern side. Contacted, BDO of Narla block, Kailash Chandra Siala said funds of `six lakh was sanctioned under the fourth State Finance Commission to Mandel gram panchayat to renovate the water body. “The tank is located on the south-west side of Asurgarh moat. Renovation work of the water tank is not being done anywhere inside the protected area of the fort hence, permission from the Archeological Survey of India for dumping earth near the moat was not required,” he said. Archaeologist Dr Baba Mishra, who is also a faculty member with the Government Autonomous College, however, said moat is an integral part of the fort. “Asurgarh is famous for its excellent hydraulic technique and water management. Filling up the moat will affect the beauty of the fort and further excavation of the hydraulic system will be affected,” he added.
Saturday, June 4, 2016
The New Indian Express (Bhubaneswar), June 4, 2016
BHAWANIPATNA: A DAY after BJP’s Vikas Utsav rally addressed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in Balasore highlighted the achievements of the NDA Government, the Congress on Friday announced to observe June 10 as ‘Dhikkar Divas’ in the State to highlight the failure of both the Centre and the State governments. They announced that they would stage demonstrations in all district and block headquarters as part of the ‘divas.’
Addressing a massive rally in front of Treasury Office, the Congress bigwigs accused the BJP and the BJD governments of showing step-motherly attitude towards Western Odisha, including KBK districts, and warned of intensified agitation for ‘Swabhimaan, and rights of Maa, Mati’.
The Congress leaders, including general secretary in-charge B K Hariprasad, former Union Minister Bhakta Charan Das and OPCC president Prasad Harichandan attended the event.
They submitted a memorandum, addressed to the Governor, through the District Collector.
The leaders accused the Naveen Patnaik Government of hijacking Central schemes and misleading people of the State.
He has mastered the art of blaming the Centre for all his failures and both the State and the Centre are trying to suppress voices of protest taking advantage of their numbers in the Houses.
Similarly, Modi is renaming the schemes launched by the UPA government and marketing it as BJP programme, they added.
The leaders said Modi is on self-glorification trips to Odisha and is selling dreams and cautioned people not to be fooled.
There is governance paralysis and poverty continues to grow despite abundant natural resources, the Congress leaders said, adding that farmers are gradually distancing themselves from agriculture and migrating to earn livelihood. More than 300 farmers have committed suicide due to debt burden, the leaders added.
They also took on the State
Government for its fresh move to mine bauxite from Niyamgiri when the Supreme Court had negated it once during the rule of UPA government.
Pointing out that Kalahandi has been a victim of neglect by both the BJP and the BJD, the leaders alleged that Sardar Rajas Medical College at Jaring has been closed, the proposed Agriculture University in Kalahandi is still in papers, university status to Autonomous Government College, Bhawanipatna has not materialised and the proposed railway wagon maintenance and repair factory at Narla in Kalahandi was shifted due to negligence. Congress leader Pradeep Majhi and former minister Jagannath Patnaik also addressed the gathering.
Congress accuses two Govts of showing step-motherly attitude towards Western Odisha
Warns of intensifying agitation for ‘Swabhimaan, and rights of Maa, Mati’
More than 300 farmers have committed suicide due to debt burden
Kalahandi sidelined in several issues
Sardar Rajas Medical College closed, proposed Agriculture University still in papers, university status to Autonomous Government College, Bhawanipatna yet to materialise, proposed railway wagon maintenance and repair factory at Narla shifted