Odisha pays tributes to Utkal Gaurab Madhusudan Das on his birth anniversary

Bhubaneswar: People of all walks of life in Odisha paid rich tributes to Utkal Gaurab Madhusudan Das on his 172nd birth anniversary today.

Taking to his twitter handle, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik paid his heartfelt tribute to Madhu Babu, who is called the architect of modern Odisha.

Likewise, Union Minister Dharmendra Pradhan and Kandhamal MP Achyuta Samanta paid their tributes to Utkal Gourab Madhusudan Das.

Madhusudan Das was born on April 28, 1848 in Satyabhamapur in Cuttack district.

After his early education in his locality, Madhusudan Das moved to Cuttack for his higher education. Later, he went to Calcutta University. In spite of extremely challenging conditions he lived in Calcutta for almost fifteen years, from 1866 to 1881.

Madhusudan Das became the first Odia to complete his B.A in 1870. He continued his studies at Calcutta and earned his M.A. in 1873, and an LL.B degree in 1878, thus becoming the first scholar from Odisha.

The common people of Odisha called him as ‘Madhu Babu’ as he worked for the political, social and economic upliftment of the people of the State.

This apart, he also massively contributed to the society as a lawyer, journalist, legislator, politician and social reformer.

He founded Utkal Sammilani which brought a revolution in the social and industrial development of Orissa. He was elected as a member of the legislative council of Bihar and Orissa Province and under the Diarchy scheme of Government of India Act, 1919, he was appointed as Minister for Local Self-Government, Medical Public Health, Public Works in 1921.

He was the first Odia to become a member of both the legislative council and the Central Legislative Assembly of India. He founded Utkal Sammilani (Utkal Union Conference) which laid the foundation of Odia nationalism. Utkal Sammilani spearheaded the demand for unification of Odia speaking areas under a single administration.  This led to the formations of state of Odisha on 1 April 1936. He was also the first Odia to travel to England. He founded the Utkal Tannery in 1905, a factory producing shoes and other leather products. In 1897 he founded the Orissa Art Ware Works. With his support, the Tarakasi(filigree) work of silver ornaments achieved commendable feet.

As a writer and poet, patriotism was always at the forefront of his mind, and that was reflected in all of his literary works. He penned a number of articles and poems in both English and Odia. Some of his important poems are “Utkal Santan”, “Jati Itihash” and “Jananira Ukti”. He was also an influential speaker in Odia, Bengali and English.

(With reference from Wikipedia)

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