Odisha is the complete picture of India’s cultural diversity: PM Modi

PM unveils Hindi translation of Dr. Harekrushna Mahatab’s ‘Odisha Itihaas’

New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi today unveiled the Hindi translation of the book ‘Odisha Itihaas’ authored by legendary Utkal Keshari Dr. Harekrushna Mahtab.

The book was released at Ambedkar International Center, Janpath, New Delhi, in presence of Union Petroleum & Natural Gas Minister Dharmendra Pradhan and Cuttack MP Bhartruhari Mahtab.

The book ‘Odisha Itihaas’ that is available in Odia and English so far, has been translated into Hindi language by Shankarlal Purohit.

Dedicating the Hindi edition of ‘Odisha Itihaas’,  Modi said that that it is important that diverse and comprehensive history of Odisha should reach people of the country.

He said that history of Odisha represents the historical strength of entire India. This strength, reflected in the history is connected with the present and future possibilities and work as a guide.

“Odisha is the complete picture of country’s cultural diversity. One can know the State by reading the book ‘Odisha Itihass’, he said at the programme organised by Harekrushna Mahtab Foundation.

The PM remembered Dr Mahtab’s contribution in the freedom struggle and lauded him for his struggle for the reformation in society.  He noted that that during the Emergency, Dr. Mahtab went to jail opposing the party under which he became Chief Minister of Odisha.

“Dr. Mahtab went to prison for both independence and for saving the country’s democracy,” he said adding, “I had visited Odisha to meet the great leader after Emergency. He was a rare leader who went to jail to save the democracy.”

Modi noted that Dr. Mahtab’s important role in Indian History Congress and taking history of Odisha to national platform. His contribution made possible museum, archives and archaeology sections in Odisha.

The Prime Minister stressed the need for much wider study of History. He said history should not only be a lesson of the past but should also mirror the future. Country is keeping this in focus while celebrating Azadi ka Amrut Mahaotsava and enlivening the history of our freedom struggle.

He lamented the fact that many important events and stories of the freedom struggle could not come before the country in proper form. He said in the Indian tradition, history is not limited to kings and palaces.

“History evolved with people over thousands of years. This is foreign thought process that has turned the stories of dynasties and palaces into history. We are not that type of people, said the Prime Minister, giving example of Ramayana and Mahabharata where most of the description is of the common people. In our lives, common person is the focus point,” said the Prime Minister.

He emphasized that with struggles like The Paika Rebellion, Ganjam Revolt to Sambalpur Struggle, land of Odisha always gave new energy to the fire of revolt against the British rule.  Surendra Sai of Sambalpur Andolan is a source of inspiration for all of us.

He remembered the immense contribution of leaders like Pandit Gopabandhu, Acharya Harihar and Dr. Harekrushna Mahtab. He paid tribute to the contribution of Ramadevi, Malti Devi, Kokila Devi and Rani Bhagyawati.

The Prime Minister also noted the contribution of the tribal community who always troubled the British with their patriotism and valour. The Prime Minister remembered the great tribal leader of the Quit India Movement, Laxman Nayak.

Dwelling upon the development of Odisha, the Prime Minister said that for business and industry, the first requirement is infrastructure. He informed that thousands of kilometres of national highways, coastal highways are being constructed in Odisha which will lead to connectivity of the parts of the state. Also, hundreds of kilometre long rail lines have also been laid in the states in the last 6-7 years. After infrastructure, attention has been given to industry. In this directions industries and companies are being encouraged. Thousands of crores have been invested to realize the vast possibilities in oil sector and steel sector in the state. Similarly, efforts are on to improve the lives of the fishermen of Odisha through blue revolution.

He also talked about the efforts being undertaken in the skill sector. For the benefit of the youth of the state, foundations have been laid for institutes like IIT Bhubaneshwar, IISER Berhampur, Indian Institute of Skills, IIT Sambalpur in the state.

The Prime Minister called for taking the history of Odisha and its grandeur to all parts of the world. He made a call for making the Azadi ka Amrut Mahotsav a truly People’s movement and expressed that this campaign will lead to the flow of similar energy as was witnessed during the independence struggle.



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