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An Open Letter to Naveen Patnaik

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An Open Letter to Naveen Patnaik
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Naveen Patnaik

Honourable Chief Minister

Government of Odisha.

Esteemed Sir,

With all sincerity, let me bear the credibility of ‘The Interview Times’. An integrated media outlet with presence across print, digital and social media platforms, the Interview Times has earned ample name and fame for its efforts to spearhead positive journalism for nearly a decade.

To this date, we have not written off any personality or organisation. We are profoundly committed to the cause of unbiased journalism– over the years; this has been the differentiator and our USP.

Leveraging all our resources, we have published inspirational stories with the underpinnings of positive journalism rooted in the Indian ethos.

We pride ourselves on serving the society though it consumed a lot of time to establish our credentials and make our news disseminating platform ‘market ready’. The Interview Times has always stood the test of time to illumine the upcoming generations.

We take immense inspiration from your inspiring and hugely successful leadership in the annals of Indian politics. Your brand of leadership stands out from the clutter for probity, unimpeachable integrity and an unswerving zeal to serve the poor and dispossessed.

Political mudslinging is a taboo for you and the party you helm. Rather, you have set the record straight with your unsullied image and enviable performance on the ground. Performance and not rhetoric has been your forte.

Your government has been delivering with consummate perfection. People and stakeholders have realised that under your stewardship, there is no chasm between optics and delivery.

Over an uninterrupted reign of 20 years, it will belittle your work if I don’t mention your achievements in promoting sports and tourism.

You have cornered effusive praise for your stunning work in setting up the country’s first exclusive Covid-19 hospital in an astonishingly short time span.

Your team of officers has bolstered your fight against the virulent pandemic by sensitizing citizens on the consequences.

But the unsavoury police high handedness of cops to enforce lockdown has robbed the lustre from your anti-Covid campaign.

All your colossal efforts to contain a deadly virus will go begging if police excess is not checked. True, the police personnel have been spot on in their role as Covid combatants.

They have forsaken their family time to do your bidding in this hour of exigent crisis. Day in and day out, they are on the vigil, tirelessly. But the manner in which some of the khaki-clad officers flog, heckle and manhandle citizens is objectionable.

The scene is much like a throwback to the colonial era when white British supremacists used to deride and beat up the innocent public. This colonial hangover and police despotism do not speak well of your transparent, citizen-centric governance.

Surely, we don’t expect this from your regime that has set lofty benchmarks in administration. We cannot imagine police swooping down on harmless public running on errands to fulfil their domestic chores.

By your own admission, 4.5 crore Odisha citizens constitute your family. Surely, they deserve better from their beloved leader.

To quote Director General of Police Mr Abhaya, 10 per cent of the people are lockdown violators. This wayward population does not conform to the rulebook.

Just to chastise these 10 per cent violators, police should not play fear mongers and inflict cruelty on the innocent majority who have pledged cooperation to the government’s avowed goal of ‘social isolation’.

This is an unprecedented crisis which we can overcome by pooling our efforts. From young to elderly, educated to illiterate, all are in dread of policing. Rather, they expect a participatory and collaborative role from the uniformed officers.

We are sure this unnatural policing doesn’t have the sanction of your high office. Hence, it is imperative that you respond with alacrity to this unprecedented situation before it spins out of control. A word from your esteemed office will assuage fears and inject hope.

Once again, I plead for your kindness to put in place a sensible and effective policing system so that we all adore it. Also, we are committed to standing united for the larger interest of our state. Together, we can defeat the pandemic COVID-19.

With Warm Regards,

Sincerely,

Dibyajit Sahu

Group Editor  The Interview Times 

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