Paper: General Studies Paper-I
Section: History of Modern Odisha
Topic: Important Personalities who shaped the Freedom Movements in Odisha
Role of Fakir Mohan Senapati in establishing the distinct identity of Odia language and literature
Born on January 14, 1843, at Mallikashpur in Balasore, he played a leading role in establishing the distinct identity of Odia language and literature. Fakirmohan Senapati is regarded as the father of Odia nationalism and the modern Odia literature. He dedicated his life for the progress of Odia language in the later 19th and early 20th century. The story of Fakirmohan is indeed the story of the “Renaissance” of Odia literature. Besides he was a social reformer and educator who used his pen to criticize and correct the aberrations prevalent in the society. He is called the father of Odia fiction.
The four novels of Fakirmohan, written between 1897 and 1915, reflect the socio-cultural conditions of Odisha during the eighteenth and the nineteenth centuries. While the three novels, Chhamana Atha Guntha, Mamun and Prayaschita explore the realities of social life in its multiple dimensions. Lachhma is a historical romance dealing with the anarchical conditions of Odisha in the wake of Maratha invasions during the eighteenth century. He has written quite a few memorable short stories, such as ‘Rebati’, ‘Patent Medicine’ and ‘Randipua Ananta’. Fakir Mohan is also the writer of the first autobiography in Odia, ‘ Atma Jeevan Charita’ .
Fakir Mohan’s first poem ‘ Utkala Bhramanam’ appeared in 1892. It is not really a travel book but rather an unusual and humorous survey of the contemporary personalities prominent in the then public life of Odisha. His other poems published are Puspamala, Upahar, Puja Phula, Prarthana and Dhuli.
He translated single-handedly the whole of the ‘ Ramayana’ and the ‘ Mahabharat’. For having translated both the ‘ Ramayan’ and the ‘ Mahabharat’ single-handed and his wide versatility in the word of letters, he is popularly known as ‘ Vyasakabi’ in Odisha.
He was also conferred the title ‘Saraswati’ by the king of Bamra, the then feudal state. A great lover and a creator of new era in Odia literature he was the founder of an organization called ‘Utkala Bhasa Unnati Bidhani Sabha’, which was started in 1867 to create a new awareness among the people of Odisha and to propagate Odia language.
Maharaja Krushnachandra Gajapati Narayan Deo as Makers of Modern Odisha
Maharaja Shri Krushna Chandra Gajapati Narayan Deo of Paralakhemundi was born on 26th April 1892, educated in Madras, assumed rulership in 1913, an enlightened and benevolent ruler; a patron of education and culture organised the annual session of the Utkal Union Conference at Paralakhemundi in 1914.
In 1916 he laid a light railway through his Estate connecting Naupada with Paralakhemundi; set up a big library in his palace for research scholars, an important member of the justice party of Madras, member of the Royal Agricultural Commission in 1927, member of the Madras Legislative Council.
He represented the case of Odisha at the Round Table Conference, London, 1930-31 and deposed before the joint Parliamentary Committee for the union of Paralakhemundi with Odisha in 1934,
He placed the printed Memorandum before the authorities and strongly advocated for inclusion of the Odia portions of Paralakhemundi in Odisha and Odisha for a separate province.
He formed the non- Congress Ministry in Odisha in 1937, the Government conferred on him the title of Maharaja in 1936 in recognition of his honour and merit. In 1941 November the Maharaja was invited to form the Ministry and assumed the Chief Ministership. Member of the Constituent Assembly of India 1947-50, life member of the Royal Society of Arts and Royal Asiatic Society, London; Life Member of Utkal University, Utkal University conferred on him the degree of LL. D. This worthy illustrious son of Odisha passed on 25th May 1974.