Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Bhubaneswar, Sept 8:
Pushed to the corner and exposed very badly following the surfacing of a number of embarrassing scams, the self-proclaimed ‘super clean’ Naveen Patnaik government in Odisha is working overtime and using every dirty trick at its command to divert public attention from the real culprits by playing one media house against the other through planted stories.
The idea is to target the media that, for a change, is hellbent on unmasking the so-called holy cows.
A case in point is the so-called ‘exclusive’ letter allegedly sent by scamster and AT Group chief Pradip Sethy, made available to a select group of media persons on Monday against an unnamed television channel.
The letter does not carry any signature, nor any telling details. It is also not clear if the so-called exclusive letter was released to the media by Pradip Sethy himself or the ruling party bosses, who have so far been able to keep the scamster under leash and ensured he does not spill the beans in public.
Despite the strict orders of the special CBI court asking concerned authorities not to allow Pradip Sethy to interact with anybody, it is strange that he was allowed to speak to a particular channel and even send them a letter !
Sources informed OST that the BJD bosses and their loyalists in the bureaucracy and police are in constant touch with Pradip Sethy and other jailed chit fund scamsters and are influencing their statements before the inquiring CBI team.
The fact that this so-called letter surfaced two days after a national English weekly magazine carried reports on how a particular high-profile BJD MP has become persona non grata in the party for allegedly trying to project himself as an alternative to Naveen Patnaik, leaves much to speculations.
It is interesting to note that ever since major scams such as the chit fund and land grabbing cases involving high profile ruling party politicians and bureaucrats surfaced in the public domain, there has been a consistent effort by powers that be to target the media and certain non-political individuals to ensure the real culprits get away with their crime.
In the process, certain media persons and media houses have been used as the proverbial ‘mohra’ to divert public attention from the real ‘looteras’ in order to shield the big culprits.
This game of playing one media house against the other has largely been facilitated by the bitter animosity and business rivalry that exist among them, a senior political observer told OST.
It’s up to the CBI now to find out how and why Pradip Sethy made such selective leaks now to the media, at a time when, as per the court order, he was not supposed to interact with anyone, he said.