Amongst the myriad golden dates carved in the historical record of the country, 1st April, 1936 shall always be the most memorable one for Odisha. After too much of bloodshed and many battles, the state got its own recognition and independence on this very day. Since then, people have been celebrating the grandeur of Utkal Divas throughout the state. NIT Rourkela hence, is no exception.
The evening of 1st April, 2015 saw an impressive crowd at the Bhubaneswar Behera Auditorium. The evening began as the auditorium echoed with applauses when a short film on Odia culture and heritage was showcased, followed by the lighting of the holy lamp at the feet of Dr. Madhusudan Das along with the invocation. After the dignitaries took their seats on the dais and were welcomed with bouquets, all present were requested to stand up in respect of the State Anthem, “Bande Utkala Janani”. The guests were welcomed by R.K. Sinha, Public Relations in-charge. The students were then addressed by Dr. Netaji Abhinandan, (Professor, Ravenshaw University) who was one of the dignified guests of the evening. He threw light upon the distinguished work of Dr. Madhusudan Das by quoting some of his impressive words from Odia literature. Dr. Aparna Mohanty (Head, Odisha Sahitya Akademi), a celebrated writer and poet of the modern times discussed the relevance of Odia literature and Odia mythology in the contemporary world. Our revered Director, Dr. S.K. Sarangi also talked about the significance of celebrating Utkal Divas thereby highlighting the contribution of the Odia freedom fighters, noble laureates and many eminent personalities of the state. Dr. Vasantha Ramaswamy (Chairman, Board of Directors, NIT Rourkela) expressed her love for Odisha through her inspiring speech thereby stating the call for unity in the states which could help build India better than ever. Dr. K.C. Pati then gave the vote of thanks.
No depiction of the land and culture of Odisha is complete without showcasing of the classical dance-drama art form of the state, Odissi. The audience was held in trance by the poise and elegance of the young dancers as they portrayed various facets of our cultural heritage and mythology, and their performance was showered with applause. The dance was followed by poetry recital by a few eminent poets belonging to the local populace who graced the occasion with their presence and added the essence of wit and wisdom to the atmosphere. The recitals drew out a few chuckles and a lot of applause from the audience, for whom it was a refreshing experience. A high tea followed the end of the recitals bringing to a close a beautiful evening of celebration of the state’s culture, language and people.
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