Bhubaneswar: Padamashri Jitendriya Haripal, who lent his voice for the iconic ‘Rangabati’ number that has kept enthralling people for over four decades, was treated shabbily by authorities of the Odisha Bhavan in New Delhi, who asked him to sleep in the dormitory of the Odisha government facility in the national capital.
The legendary folk singer had applied for a room in Odisha Bhawan for three days from June 9 to June 11 during a recent visit to New Delhi. But he got a rude shock when he received a letter from the Odisha government asking him to manage on a single bed in room no 1302.
But the pride of Odisha, who was clueless about who had allotted him the single bed and under what circumstances, did not point fingers at any one. “Whatever happens happens according to the will of God and for the good of the individual. Therefore, the one who had allotted the bed might have felt that it was good for me,” said an humble Haripal.
When Kalinga TV sought his reaction on the Odisha government disgracing a Padma Shri awardee, he said, “I never look for respect. So I do not feel disgraced when someone disrespects me. Only the one who wants to be respected would feel so. It is true that I am sad about the unexpected incident. But, I am sad not because I am a Padma Shri awardee. I think the award itself was not valued.” It would have been better if they had mentioned only Jitendriya Haripal instead of Padma Shri Jitendriya Haripal while allotting the room, added a visibly hurt Haripal.
Haripal, however, praised the officials and inmates of the Odisha Bhawan for their support.
“The officials and inmates here helped and supported me whenever I approached them. Had they not recognized me, I would have taken shelter in a temple or elsewhere,” he said.