‘Declare August 24 as ‘Self-sacrifice Day,’ Odisha govt urged

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Koraput Tribal SeminarBhubaneswar:  A seminar organised to commemorate the contribution of tribals in undivided Koraput district has appealed to the state government to declare August 24, the day when 19 tribals were gunned down by British forces on the banks of Turi river in Papadahandi in present day Nabarangpur district took place during the Quit India movement in 1942, as “Self-Sacrifice Day” (Atmotsarga Diwas).

The seminar on the topic “The role of tribal people in Koraput during the Quit India Movement” organised at Shaheed Laxman Nayak Bhawan in the capital city on Friday to mark the platinum jubilee of the Quit India Movement of 1942, unanimously resolved to request the state government in this regard.

As many as 19 tribal persons were killed by the British Police on that fateful day, while they were moving towards Papadhandi village to attend a meeting called there as part of the Quit India Movement.

Addressing the gathering, Odisha ST/SC Minister Ramesh Majhi, the chief guest on the occasion, said, “The sacrifice of tribal people of the then Koraput district during the Quit India Movement is unforgettable.”

The Minister recalled the supreme sacrifice of Saheed Laxman Nayak , who was awarded the death penalty by the British Raj during the historic movement called by Mahatma Gandhi.

Rajya Sabha MP AV Swami narrated how the tribal people of Karaput region had overcome numerous difficulties while participating in the iconic national movement.

A Professor of Delhi University Vijay Laxmi Singh said, “Organising a mass tribal agitation for the national cause in a remote area like Koraput during 1940s was incredible and exceptional in the history of Indian freedom struggle”.

Nabarangpur Lok Sabha MP Balabhadra Majhi, Dabugam MLA Bhujabal Majhi, Lieutenant General Narayan Mahanty, other dignitaries and intellectuals were present on the occasion.

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