Bhubaneswar: The seven-day Ekamra Utsav, organised by the Bhubaneswar Development Authority (BDA), kicked off at the IDCO exhibition ground in Odisha capital here today.
One of the biggest festivals of the state, Ekamra Utsav holds special significance as it is a sincere effort at highlighting the states dedication to preserving and showcasing its linguistic heritage.
The festival, inaugurated by Housing and Urban Development Minister Usha Devi, is being organised on the sidelines of the first World Odia Language Conference in the capital city here.
Science & Technology Minister Ashok Panda, Odia Language Literature & Culture Minister Aswini Patra, MLAs Ananta Narayana Jena and Susant Kumar Rout, Mayor Sulochana Das and Deputy Mayor Manjulata Kanhar among others were present at the inaugural ceremony.
The festival, which is scheduled to continue till February 9, has five distinct components promising diverse experiences and celebrates the rich heritage of Odisha, encompassing its cinema, language, literature, and all facets that define the Odia identity.
The main event, Sangitara Murchana, unfolded at the IDCO Exhibition ground, showcasing captivating performances by renowned artistes from across the country. Attendees were treated with live music, band performances, and various forms of performing arts, all rooted in Odia language and culture, said an official of the BDA.
Renowned artistes and singers including Jyotirmaye, Abhiram, Rajesh Sathpathy, Krushna and Mitrabhanu, the son of Odia music legend Akshya Mohanty, set the stage on fire in the segment, ‘Smruti Tume’.
In addition to Sangitara Murchana, the festival is also hosting the Food Festival – “AMA BYANJAN,” with 20 food stalls. The stalls feature delicacies representing various districts of the state, alongside a bustling flea market and experience zones offering a platform for exploration and connection.
The Ekamra Haat (Night Flea Market of Ekamra Utsav) showcasing 33 stalls will run from February 3 to 9 at the Ekamra Expo Area in Bhubaneswar. The night flea market will run from 5 pm to 11 pm daily, showcasing the cultural vibrancy of Odia heritage against the city’s lively backdrop.
A highlight of the festival includes a drone show scheduled for February 7, 8, and 9, themed around Odia language, art, and culture, featuring 200 drones. Additionally, designs based on Odia language, art, and culture will adorn Madhusudan Marg leading to the venue, promoting the essence of the language and heritage.
Ekamra Utsav aims to honor the profound legacy and ancient roots of the Odia Language through a captivating exhibition centered on the Odia alphabet.