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Corona Foils Last Wish


Last wish of veteran freedom fighter, nonagenarian social activist and former Parliamentarian Bhabani Charan Pattanaik remain unfilled. Though during his life time he completed all the formalities to donate his body and organ after brain death, contrary to his commitment mortal remains of his body was consigned to flames. 

After enactment of specific law for donation of body and organ, three times Rajya Sabha Member Bhabani babu submitted legal documents with consent of his heirs for organ and body donation. This was also duly acknowledged by the competent authorities at the relevant point of time.

It is pertinent to mention here that such step of Bhabani Pattanaik inspired many people to come forward for such unique donation. On 11 May he completed his 98 years of active life and on that occasion while a Minister visited him to offer good wishes, Bhabani babu also requested him to fulfill his desire for body donation after his death. 

In the meantime cadaveric transplantation of organs like liver and kidney was made successful in different hospitals of Odisha and many critical patients are eagerly waiting for such transplant.

Bhabani Pattanaik, a close associate of Biju Pattanaik since 1945 breathed his last on last Thursday evening in Capital hospital. He was an active member of State Government’s Gandhi: 150 committee and also chairman of Kalinga Foundation Trust founded by his mentor Biju babu. After his demise authorities concerned were contacted to receive the body of this eminent personality as per commitment. However it was not made possible on the plea of Covid-19 pandemic. Therefore State Government announced to cremate his body with state honour in his native place Nimapara.

In view of the circumstances in presence of several Ministers, MLAs, District Collector, other dignitaries and large gathering after completion of traditional rituals with state honour body of Bhabani babu was laid on the funeral pyre today at Nimapara. Despite repeated caution by administration to maintain social distance and allow maximum twenty persons for cremation, thousands of people thronged into crematorium and streets of Nimapara to pay their last tribute. 

Many social activists expressed their unhappiness as his commitment to the nation for donation of body after brain death was not implemented. One of his long time close associate and eminent Gandhian Thinker Prahallad Sinha who has also completed all the formalities for such donation stated that till date many declarations of freedom movement and Mahatma Gandhi such as prohibition, Gram Swaraj etc. are yet to be implemented.

Though nonagenarian social activist Bhabani bhai has contributed a lot to the society and state during his life time, non-fulfillment of his noble desire to donate his body for research of medical students has shocked many.

It is pertinent to mention here that earlier former West Bengal Chief Minister Jyoti Basu, another freedom fighter and former MLA of Odisha Jagannath Prasad Das and many others have donated their body for such purpose.

However despite state honour before cremation, the last wishes of Bhabani Pattanaik were not honoured appropriately during this corona pandemic. This is not an isolated case. Family members of few other such donors are also not allowed for such purpose on the ground of corona pandemic.
      
 


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