Young astrophysicist Banita Dash from Odisha wins Rashtirya Bal Puraskar 2022

Bhubaneswar: Banita Dash, a young astrophysicist from Odisha’s Nabarangpur district, has won the Pradhan Mantri Rashtirya Bal Puraskar for the year 2022.

She received a cash prize of Rs 1 lakh and an e-certificate from Prime Minister Narendra Modi at a function held on virtual mode on the occasion of National Girl Child Day, yesterday.

She was given the award for excellence in the field of innovation. Banita, who has keen interest in asteroids, had discovered an asteroid which was validated by NASA.

She has been recognized as a Citizen Scientist by NASA and IASC. She has also designed an automated sanitizing school bag for school children, which was recognized at national level.

Besides following her passion, 16-year-old Banita also has an interest in Pattachitra. She is a Class-X student of Jawahar Navodaya Vidyalaya in Anupur.

PM Modi and Smriti Irani, Union Cabinet Minister for Women & Child Development, have praised Banita over her achievement.


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