Saturday, 1 October 2016

Navratri: 01-10 October, 2016


Navratri is a major Hindu festival dedicated to the worship of Goddess Adi Shakti or Maa Durga. Navratri literally means nine nights. During these nine nights and ten days, nine forms of Shakti are worshiped and the tenth day is commonly celebrated as Vijayadashami or Dussehra.
Nine forms of Shakti that are worshipped during the Navratri are: First night– Shailputri, Second- Bhramcharini, Third – Chandraghanta, Fourth –Kushmanda, Fifth – Skandmata, Sixth –Kaatyayani, Seventh–Kaalratri, Eighth – Mahagauri and Ninth Navratri – Siddhiratri are worshipped. Tenth day is commonly celebrated as Vijayadashami.
Navratri is a very important festival in all parts of the country. In the western States of Karnataka, Maharashtra and Gujarat it is the principal festival of the year and during which the traditional dance of Gujarat Garba is widely performed.
This festival is celebrated with great zeal in North Indian States like Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Himachal, Uttarakhand, Rajasthan, Punjab, Haryana, Delhi and performances of the Ramlila are the major attractions in these states. The Dussehra of Kullu in Himachal Pradesh is particularly famous in the North India.

The large procession of Goddess Chamundeshwari on a golden throne mounted on several well decorated elephants in Mysore, Karnataka is the main attraction of the Navratri festival in South India.
In the Eastern part of India particularly in Jharkhand, Assam, West Bengal and Odisha Hindus believe that it is lucky to start a new venture, project during Navratri or on Dussehra. So people and particularly the business community celebrate it as the New Year. In major Shakti Peethas like kali in Kolkata, Tara Tarini in Odisha, Kamakshya in Assam and, in other major Peethas the Navratri is celebrated for 16 days. Everywhere, the Sharad Navaratri culminates in the day of Vijayadashami or Dussehra. 

Wednesday, 13 April 2016

Lakhs of devotees gathered on Third Tuesday of Chaitra Yatra

The Third Tuesday of Chaitra month, considered the holiest in the annual calendar of the Tara Tarini Shakti Peetha began with the chanting of Vedic Mantras on the midnight of Monday. On the occasion lakhs of devotees had gathered at the hill shrine from Monday afternoon itself. As per the established traditions the Mangala Arati started at around 12.10 am in the morning and after the completion of Abakasha, Snana, Mailama Lagi, Sringara, Chandana Lagi, Panchamruta Bhoga, Bala Bhoga and Khichidi Bhoga the morning Arati of Adi Shakti was completed in 3.20 am at the Sanctum of the Shrine. Following it the Bagala Mukhi Besha Darshana for the Devotees started at around 3.30 am in the morning.
As per Hindu Purana and Tantra Shastra this is one of the 04 major Shakti Peethas in India where the twin goddesses Tara and Tarini are worshipped as the Breast Shrine of Devi Sati and the manifestation of Adi Shakti.
This famous Shakti/Tantra Peetha is located on the bank of pious river Rushikulya which is near Berhampur city in Ganjam district of Odisha.

The goddesses Tara and Tarini are regarded as the presiding deity (Ista-Devi) in majority of households in Odisha and in many parts of India.
Around Four lakhs of devotees visited the Tara Tarini Shakti Peetha on the occasion.
Mundan ceremony of over 10,000 babies (usually performed during the first year of a child’s life) is done to get the blessings of the Adi Shakti.
Devotees waited in long queues and dared extreme heat to offer prayers at the Shakti Peetha on the hill-top and participate in the Chaitra Mela, one of the biggest and longest religious fairs in the country.
On this occasion, more than 15,000 families and groups were seen cooking in the surrounding areas of the shrine and had a day of picnic at the Shrine. This is a unique and thousands of years old tradition at Tara Tarini Shakti Peetha.
Ganjam District administration and District police made elaborate arrangements for the visitors. As per the believe devotees climbed 999 holy steps to reach the hill temple. The rope-way which is being operated by TTDB and Ushabreco Pvt. Ltd. also carried thousands of devotees to the hill temple. The TTDB also operated buses to carry around 10,000 devotees to the hill top.
The Temple authorities distributed Pana, Buttermilk and Halwa Prasad to all the devotees during the entire day.
Justic Basudev Panigrahi of Odisha High Court, Member of Parliament, Aska Shri Ladu Kishor Swain, MLA Tirtol, Shri R Mallick, Odisha Southern Division IG Shri Amitabh Thakur, many other senior central and state government officials, Sub Collector, Tahasildar, officials of district administration, Secretary TTDB Shri Pramod Panda, Temple Executive Officer, office bearers of TTDB and Temple Management were also present on the occasion.
Special arrangements have been made for the convenience of the visitors. The TTDB, TATA, Gopalpur PORT Authority and other organizations set up Tents on the way and in and around the hilltop so that visitors can take rest and visit the Shrine without any difficulty.
Temporary health camps and drinking water points were also put up. The volunteers of the TTDB, NGOs and voluntary organizations and local residents actively helped the devotees who came from various neighboring states like Andhra Pradsh, Chhattisgarh and West Bengal and from many parts of the country.
Thousands of volunteers and hundreds of Policemen were deployed to control the huge rush, therefore the Third Tuesday of Chaitra Yatra which saw a huge rush passed off peacefully.
Thanks & Regards,
Ram Prasad Tripathy
PRO, Tara Tarini Development Board

Berhampur, Odisha

Over 3 lakh devotees throng to Tara Tarini Shakti Peetha on Second Tuesday of Chaitra


More than three lakhs of devotees thronged to Tara Tarini Shakti Peetha on the second Tuesday of Chaitra near Berhampur city in Ganjam district of Odisha.
This is one of the major Shakti Peethas in India where the twin goddesses Tara and Tarini are worshipped as the Breast Shrine of Devi Sati and the manifestation of Adi Shakti. This famous Shakti/Tantra Peetha is located on the bank of pious river Rushikulya.
The goddesses Tara and Tarini are regarded as the presiding deity (Ista-Devi) in ever part of the state of Odisha and in many parts of India.

On the occasion of Second Tuesday lakhs of devotees had started gathering at the hill shrine from Monday afternoon itself. As per the established traditions the Mangala Arati started at 12.30 am in the sanctum of the temple and after the completion of Abakasha, Snana, Sringara, Chandana lagi and Panchamruta Bhoga of Devi Tara Tarini the morning Arati was completed in 3.20 am. Following it the Darshana started for everybody after 3.30 am in the morning.
Joint Secretary of Ministry of Drinking Water and Sanitation, Government of India Shri Satyabrata Sahu, Commandant of Army Air Defence College, Golabandha, many other senior central and state government officials, officials of district administration, Secretary TTDB Shri Pramod Panda, Temple Executive Officer, office bearers of TTDB and Temple Management were also present on the occasion.
Mundan ceremony of more than 10,000 babies (usually performed during the first year of a child’s life) is done to get the blessings of the Adi Shakti.
Ganjam District administration and District police made elaborate arrangements for the visitors. As per the believe devotees climbed 999 holy steps to reach the hill temple. The rope-way which is being operated by TTDB and ushabreco also carried thousands of devotees to the hill temple. The TTDB also operated buses to carry devotees to the hill top.

Special arrangements have been made for the convenience of the visitors. Tents have been set up on the way to the hilltop so that visitors can take rest. Temporary health camps and drinking water points are also put up. The volunteers of the TTDB, NGOs and voluntary organizations and local residents actively helped the devotees who came from various parts of the country.

Chaitra Mela begins at Tara Tarini Temple


Thousands of people from far-off places in the state and neighbouring Andhra Pradesh throng the Tara Tarini temple with their babies on the occasion of Chaitra Mela, which started on March 30, 2016.
The temple is one of the famous Shakti shrines in the state, located on the banks of the Rushikulya, about 35 km from Berhampur city in the Ganjam district.
"Shaving the heads of babies and offering their hair is a tradition in Ganjam and its adjoining districts. A company from Andhra Pradesh collects the hair and has offered around Rs 2.25 lakh this time. Last year, the same company had offered Rs 2.6 lakh," temple sources said.
Braving the scorching sun, thousands climb 999 steps to reach the 17th century temple, located about 709 ft above the sea level to tonsure their babies and offer the hair to the goddess every Tuesday of the month.
"About 700 police personnel, including eight platoons of police forces, three additional SPs (Ganjam), one DSP, ten inspector rank officers were camping on the temple premises to oversee traffic management and law and order," said SP (Ganjam) Ashish Singh. He added that no untoward incident has been reported in the temple yet.

-March 30, 2016

Wednesday, 9 December 2015

Water sports complex inaugurated at famous beach resort Gopalpur-on-Sea, Berhampur

A water sports complex was inaugurated in the backwater at Gopalpur beach resort in Ganjam district of Odisha on Sunday.
The inauguration comes ahead of the Gopalpur beach festival scheduled from December 24 to 28. This complex is being envisioned as a major attractor of tourists and water sport enthusiasts to this famous beach resort on eastern coast, best known for it serenity. Berhampur sub-collector Nikhil Pawan Kalyan inaugurated the complex.
Established with support of international scuba diver Shabbir Baux, the complex has facilities for water surfing, wind surfing, kayaking and scuba diving as well as water scooters. It would remain open for visitors from 7 a.m. till 5 p.m.. Well-known wind surfer Manaswini Moharana, who hails from Ganjam district, would provide training and technical support to the visitors.

Saturday, 31 October 2015

Shifting of NHAI office Berhampur to Balasore

Friends, Please raise your voice against this anti Berhampur stand of the Naveen Patnaik led BJD govt...otherwise this negligence towards Berhampur and South Odisha will continue for ever............
-Ram Prasad Tripathy

Thursday, 22 October 2015

Thursday, 2 July 2015

Odisha Govt failed to identify required land for the airport in Berhampur

Minister of State for Civil Aviation informed the Rajya Sabha on 12-August-2014 that Government plans to develop 3 new airports in Odisha at Jharsuguda, Berhampur and Jeypore. The Minister stated that, "a team from Airports Authority of India inspected Jharsuguda, Berhampur and Jeypore airports and observed that the Jharsuguda (AAI airport) can be developed for operations of A-320 type of aircraft whereas Berhampur (State Government airport) can be developed for ATR-72-500 for which additional 267 acres of land is required. Jeypore (State Government airport) can be developed for ATR-72-500 for which additional 253 acres of land is required". But, the Odisha Govt has failed to identify the required land for the airport in Berhampur and has gone in to complete silence on this issue.

For Berhampur people Sidhanta Mahapatra is not a hero ......................


Monday, 20 April 2015

Famous Thakurani Yatra extended by 11 days in Berhampur


In view of popular demand, the district administration in Ganjam has extended the famous Thakurani Yatra on April 19, 2015 in Berhampur by 11 days. The biennial festival, which started on March 28, will continue till April 27, officals said today.


Initially, the district administration had allowed the festival committee to hold the yatra for 20 days even though the latter had sought permission for 31 days.
"Several people approached the district administration requesting for extension of the festival", said Sub-Collector (Berhampur) Nikhil Pawan Kalyan.

The festival is attracting huge crowd from different places and hundreds of the people are thronging the Silk City to witness the famous Yatra. Locals dressed like mythological characters are seen moving around the city and so are chariots in different shapes like boita (ship) and doli (swing).

Saturday, 21 March 2015

Famous Berhampur Thakurani Jatra to begin from March 28

The famous Budhi Thakurani Jatra of Berhampur will start from March 28 this year and will continue till April 27. Preparations for the biannual festival have started at the Desibehera Street in Berhampur after the Subha Khunti (auspicious post) was laid on March 12.
Devotees in huge numbers expected to visit the temporary temple at the Desibehera Street at the time of Jatra,

Devotees in huge numbers expected to visit the temporary temple at the Desibehera Street at the time of Jatra,
Devotees in huge numbers expected to visit the temporary temple at the Desibehera Street at the time of Jatra, 
“The construction of the temporary temple at the Desibehera Street has started, it will take four more days to complete,” informed the craftsman of the temporary Mandap Dasarathi Maharana. The Jatra begins with the arrival of the floral sign of the deity (Aagyamala) to the temporary temple. This will be followed by Ghata Yatra in which the Aagyanmala will be taken on a public procession around the streets of Old Berhampur.
As devotees in huge numbers are expected at the time of Jatra, the Public Health Department has planned to increase drinking water supply in the Bada Bazar area.
As informed by the Executive Engineer of PHD Deba Sundar Mahapatra, around 20 temporary stand points will be placed in Desibehera Street and the nearby places. Water tankers will be positioned on different squares of the city at the time of jatra.
20 March 2015 | Ronalisa Parida | Edited By: Longjam Dineshwori
http://microstatindia.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=2296&catid=19&Itemid=630

Thursday, 19 February 2015

Tara Tarini Chaitra Yatra to be polythene-free

The famous Maa Tara Tarini Chaitra Yatra of Ganjam is going to begin from March 10. As per traditions, it will be performed on the four Tuesdays of the month of Chaitra. Keeping in view the flow of lakhs of devotees to the temple, the district administration held a preparatory meeting at Chatrapur on February 10. Revenue Divisional Commissioner (SD) and chairperson of the Tara Tarini Development Council Sailendra Narayan De presided over the meeting.

Old Image of Tara Tarini Shakti Peetha :Braving heat lakhs of
devotees standing in long queue to enter the famous Tara Tarini hill temple

(Breast Shrine of Shakti) near Berhampur city in Ganjam district, Odisha

Ganjam Collector Premchand Choudhury explained the significance and pride of the heritage temple and the famous yatra and sought the cooperation of all the service wings of the district administration and people of all walks of life for smooth and successful conduct of the yatra.
The meeting, among other things, decided to make the entire region of Maa Tara Tarini Temple free from polythene, construct adequate  rest sheds to protect devotees from possible heat wave, provide drinking water, put in place effective traffic system for transportation of devotees, provide temporary healthcare camps and sanitation in the temple premises, deploy fire fighting vehicles and ODRAF team, prohibit sale and consumption of liquor and other drugs in the region, repair and renovate all approaching roads on war footing and construct temporary toilets for devotees, among others.
It was also decided in the meeting that the Chatrapur Sub-Collector will review the progress of the preparatory work once in each week till the yatra begins. A master plan for all-round development of the temple was presented. The committee advised the chief of the Technical Committee Binod Kumar Patra to complete all the pending works on war footing.
Among others, Maa Tara Tarini Temple Development Council secretary Pramod Kumar Panda, Additional Collector Pradeep Kumar Nanda, CDMO Dr PC Sahu, the Ganjam ADMO, the Chatrapur Sub-Collector, the Purushottampur BDO, representatives of Sevayats Tapan Rana and Jagannath Rana attended.

Wednesday, 24 December 2014

How the state government in Odisha cheated the public on the IIM establishment issue?

This is how the state government in Odisha cheated the public on the IIM establishment issue. Actually the State Govt had decided about the location of IIM beforehand and it was just looking for an alibi to justify its decision. The 'airport' clause was self inflicted by the State government to hoodwink the people of Ganjam who tried every possible civilised method to convince the State Govt on the historic necessity of IIM in Berhampur. However, Odisha being Odisha here civilised methods and passionate appeals just does not work despite valid considerations of equity and distributive justice. . 

This is how the state government in Odisha cheated the public on the IIM establishment issue. Actually the State Govt had decided about the location of IIM beforehand and it was just looking for an alibi to justify its decision. The 'airport' clause was self inflicted by the State government to hoodwink the people of Ganjam who tried every possible civilised method to convince the State Govt on the historic necessity of IIM in Berhampur. However, Odisha being Odisha here civilised methods and passionate appeals just does not work despite valid considerations of equity and distributive justice. . 
(The Sambad)
(The Sambad)


Sunday, 16 November 2014

Images of BERHAMPUR BANDH demanding establishment of IIM at Berhampur

Odisha Govt should follow the old Saying, "Dont put all your Eggs in One Basket" and for all round development Education must be evenly spread across the State. 
Images of BERHAMPUR BANDH demanding establishment of IIM at Berhampur

Odisha Govt. Ditched & Deceived the people of South Odisha

Friends If we remain silent today we will have no right to complain in the future

Silence is not the answer to the problems facing South Odisha. If we remain silent today we will have no right to complain in the future. Because remaining silent will mean supporting the present development template being followed by the State Govt. Every citizen in India has right to development and the people of South Odisha cannot be denied this right. The questions raised here are certainly from the perspective of Berhampur city which is agitating for the IIM, but we do know that every single individual in South Odisha and Ganjam is equally concerned about the enigmatic silence of the Statate Govt on development issues after garnering their votes. This is not acceptable and we have to shout at the loudest to be heared by a Govt which is completely deaf and bereft of a sense of equity and justice.

Berhampur erupts in protest against the State Government

Berhampur erupts in protest against the State Government's highly retrograde moves on the establishment of IIM. Students across the district protest against the biased decision even as more aggressive protests have been planned for the coming days.

Handling IIM establishment issue proves lowest point in Naveen Patnaik's career as Chief Minister even as corruption charges flying thick and fast against the State Govt.

People not ready to give up yet on the IIM-Berhampur demand. Massive agitations planned in the coming days. BJD loses its credibility in Ganjam as it is accused of stage-managing the whole episode. Handling IIM establishment issue proves lowest point in Naveen Patnaik's career as Chief Minister even as corruption charges flying thick and fast against the State Govt.

People of Ganjam and Berhampur fought for the establishment of IIM-Berhampur against all odds. But they were fighting against a highly biased State Government, arrogant and drunk with power who have displayed scant respect for distributive justice. Not only Berhmapur city; for 90% of Odisha this decision comes as a big letdown. However this cannot be the end of the story and with greater public awareness we can set bigger goals for Berhampur and Ganjam and aspire for our rightful space in a developed India. Not to be disheartened and time to work with greater vigor and enthusiasm for the cause of Berhampur.



Is Odisha State government forcing the people of Berhampur & South Odisha to demand a separate Kalinga State??????

This is the right time to expose the State Government which has taken the people of Ganjam and South Odisha for granted.These questions follow from the opinions expressed by the readers in the previous post. As responsible citizens you are free to give opinions outsides the choices indicated on the path forward for Berhampur city, Ganjam and the backward southern odisha.

Is Berhampur city (South Odisha, Kalinga) not a part of Odisha State??????

Ganjam produced a former President of India, Former PM PV Narasimha Rao was MP of Berhampur, Krushna Chandra Gajapati, Sadasiva Tripathy, Binayak Acharya, Biju Patnaik and his Son went on to become Chief Ministers of Odisha. Yet 10 lakh people from Ganjam live in the slums of Surat, Mumbai and Ahmedabad. Not even a screw and bolt factory has not been built in Ganjam and the last major Institution (the Berhampur University) was established in the district almost 50 years ago. For last 5 decades Ganjam is crying for development but Ganjam people are as passive as ever. If they do not wake up now to question their leaders, then better they should prepare to live like slaves. The question is not only about the IIM; it is about self respect. Some people are saying that Berhampur does not have the infra to host an IIM. But then the question is who is responsible for poor infrastructure in Berhampur and Ganjam. So, time has come when people must speak up and oppose the continuous neglect of the State Govt.
The decision on IIM site selection, if true, should serve as a lesson for the people of rest of Odisha (Ganjam in particular) that they are second grade citizens and aliens in their own State who are remembered only once in 5 years during elections as they dont enjoy the rights same as the State capital. See how audacious the corrupt BJD Govt in Odisha has been on the IIM issue? The CM has no time to assuage the people of Berhampur who are on hunger strike demanding the establishment of IIM and the decision is being selectively leaked through the media about the decision to establish yet another central Institute in Bhubaneswar, now the IIM.

Does the CM even know about the IIM-Berhampur agitation?

Does the CM even know about the IIM-Berhampur agitation? He is silent as ever and the Berhampur MP goes missing every now and then to appear only during elections. With such representatives who denied even the Smart-city tag to Berhampur; people are bound to be frustrated.
Photo: Does the CM even know about the IIM-Berhampur agitation? He is silent as ever and the Berhampur MP goes missing every now and then to appear only during elections. With such representatives who denied even the Smart-city tag to Berhampur; people are bound to be frustrated.

Stop Step-motherly treatment to South Odisha (Kalinga)..... Establish IIM @ Berhampur

Saturday, 2 August 2014

Lawyers go on stir seeking court bench at Berhampur

Members of Ganjam District Consumer Bar Association started indefinite agitation from Friday demanding immediate commencement of proposed circuit bench of Odisha State Consumer Dispute Redressal Commission (SCDRC) in Berhampur.
Led by the president of the association, Kailash Chandra Mishra, and secretary Shyamakant Jena, the agitating lawyers sat on dharna on the premises of District Consumer Dispute Redressal Forum (DCDRF) in the city. They shouted slogans criticising the State government and the SCDRC for the delay in starting of the proposed circuit bench.

In January this year, the government had proposed to have two circuit benches of the SCDRC in Berhampur and Sambalpur. The decision was taken considering the large number of cases pending before the State Commission from southern and western parts of the State. At present the aggrieved consumers of south Odisha have to travel to Cuttack to file cases before SCDRC.

The director of department of consumer affairs had written to the Revenue Divisional Commissioner (RDC), southern division and western division as well as the secretary of SCDRC to initiate necessary measures for functioning of the two proposed circuit benches of the commission.

The RDC had given consent to provide all facilities for holding circuit bench the city. But, according to the members of the Bar association, till date the SCDRC has not held any hearing of its circuit bench in Berhampur. They alleged that similar was the situation in Sambalpur. The lawyers said they had given a notice to the State government on their demand 15 days back but no decision has been taken in this regard. They said they would continue their agitation till their demand was met....

Source-the hindu

Monday, 19 May 2014

Seek solace at Taratarini Shrine

BY: BIBHUTI BARIK
Bhubaneswar, May 18: When chief minister Naveen Patnaik started his electoral journey after paying an obeisance to the famous deity at Taratarini three weeks ago, people of Ganjam and the entire south Odisha were extremely happy.
Before beginning anything auspicious, an average person from undivided Ganjam district and the entire south Odisha would always seek blessings of Goddess Taratarini. It is believed that if you go to the temple with a wish in your heart, then it would definitely be fulfilled.
Situated in Raipura village under Purushottampur block in Ganjam district, lakhs of tourists from nearby areas in Odisha and also from Andhra Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh and Bengal visit the famous shrine.
The temple on the summit of a hillock is on the right bank of the beautiful and meandering Rushikulya river. The shrine is just 7km away from Purushottampur and 30km away from Berhampur.
Travel writer from Chhatrapur, district headquarters town of Ganjam, Sujata Patnaik, said: “Taratarini shrine has now achieved tremendous popularity for the twin goddesses Tara and Tarini. Both are ancient deities and were worshiped on the hilltop at a small temple for decades in the past. The original structure was demolished in 2005 and the new temple replaced the old one with the Kalingan temple architecture. With beautiful Khandolite stone the temple looks beautiful from the road near the foothill.’’
Nityanand Mondal, a visitor from Bhubaneswar, who came to the shrine with family said: “The ropeway has added a new dimension to the tourism scene. Unlike the ropeway at Nandankanan Zoological Park, which is abandoned now, the cars here give you a feeling of a safe ride. A person can also come to the hilltop without hiring a vehicle and go back by the ropeway.’’
The state government has also taken up widening of the road to the shrine that was earlier narrow. “The road widening work is a good step taken by the authorities. The endowment department should go for facilitating basic amenities near the shrine outside the temple compound,’’ said Nigam Nayak, a tourist, who came from Berhampur with friends.
The twin deities, crudely fashioned in stone, have beautiful silver eyes attached to them. Legends connect the deities to Sakta cult in the past.
Historians say that the Bhanja dynasty rulers of the former Ghumsar state in the undivided Ganjam district installed the enshrining deity. At present the endowment department looks after the temple, but Taratarini Development Board administers the day-to-day affairs.
Interestingly, monkeys in groups often create problems for visitors. “You must not flash a banana or coconuts openly while returning from the temple before getting into the vehicles. You should hide them with a dupatta or a bag,’’ said Nayak.
While the kalpa bata or the banyan tree which fulfils wishes is outside the temple and gets offerings of red scarves, bangles and clothes, a point near the gate also attracts visitors to put their offerings on a platform.
Offerings such as laddu and khichdi are available at a counter near a gate with a nominal price.
Getting there is easy as taxis and auto-rickshaws available at Berhampur and Chhatrapur. There are several places to stay. Moreover, there is a beautiful Panth Nivas run by the Odisha Tourism Development Corporation near the hill. Rail and road links to Berhampur and Chhatrapur are available in plenty.

Source: The Telegraph 

Saturday, 5 April 2014

Is this the world's biggest election loser?

By Sandeep Sahu
Berhampur, Odisha

He has stood in every Indian parliamentary election since 1962 - and lost every one - but that has not deterred 78-year-old Shyam Babu Subudhi from throwing his hat into the ring once again. Dr Subudhi is a homeopathy practitioner in Berhampur, a town in the eastern Indian state of Odisha. And he is contesting two constituencies, Berhampur and Aska, in India's forthcoming parliamentary polls.
Despite losing his deposit in every previous election, having won less than a sixth of the votes cast each time, Dr Subudhi is surprisingly confident he can win both seats this time. His one-page election manifesto even claims that there is "enough of a possibility" of him being appointed prime minister of India after the coming elections.

This will be his 13th attempt in a row to enter India's parliament. I am in electoral politics because I want to end corruption in the country” "People are fed up with the current crop of leaders, who switch parties when they are not given a ticket by their own party. They have seen that I am the only person who has steadfastly refused to join any political party since the 1960s," Dr Subudhi told the BBC at his home in Berhampur.
Dr Subudhi's electoral debut came in 1957, when he battled former State Minister Brundaban Nayak over the setting up of a school in Berhampur. "I fought with him in the Hinjili Assembly constituency and lost narrowly," he says proudly.
What started as a battle over a school soon turned into an obsession for this man, a familiar sight on the streets of Berhampur in his trademark cap, uneven beard, bulging black bag and well-worn suit, even in the scorching summer heat.

He fought in both assembly and parliamentary elections until 1980, when he took on former Chief Minister JB Patnaik in Begunia. From then on, he has focused his efforts purely on parliamentary elections.  Dr Subudhi remembers his "fight" against former Prime Minister Rao (right) as a high point of his career.
The high point of his long electoral career came in 1996 when he "fought" the Prime Minister of India, PV Narasimha Rao, for the Berhampur seat. Biju Patnaik, father of India's current chief minister and the biggest political leader in the state's post-independence history, is among his other notable "rivals".
"I am in electoral politics because I want to end corruption in the country," Dr Subudhi says. But how can he end corruption, even if he wins the election, when he is only an independent candidate? "I am sure I will get the support of many others in parliament," he says confidently.
Curiously for someone who is 78 and on the ballot in two constituencies, his manifesto promises to bar people above 60 from contesting elections, and put an end to the practice of standing in more than one seat.
His campaign style is also frugal and lacks the pomp and ostentation usually associated with Indian elections. He moves about mostly on foot, by bicycle or even bull-drawn cart, as he meets his electorate in ones and twos.

But Dr Subudhi readily concedes that despite his no-frills campaign style, he could end up spending about 500,000 Indian rupees ($8,300; £5,000) this time. But he laughs away any suggestion his family members might be peeved with him for "wasting" the money.
Indian workers make different party campaign flags at a workshop in Hyderabad on 7 March 2014
They do not appear too perturbed. "He spends his own money and never asks for help from anybody," says his daughter-in-law Rashmita. His earnings apparently come from his still-flourishing homeopathy practice, while his sizeable ancestral property ensures that he is never short of money to fight elections.
Many people in the town think he is mad. Others think he is an old man obsessed with getting into the Guinness Book of Records as the man who has contested the most elections.
But there are some - like his contemporary and good friend Venkat Bihari Praharaj - who do take him seriously. They believe he is standing sincerely and is not in the fight for fun. "But the problem is people tend to vote for parties rather than individuals," Praharaj says. There is nothing to suggest that the voters will behave any differently this time. But Dr K Shyam Babu Subudhi will have none of it.

Friday, 31 January 2014

BJP national general secretary (organisation) Ram Lal urged the public to vote for BJP in general election to see Modi as PM

SOUTH ODISHA BJP CADRE GEAR UP FOR 2014 ELECTIONS



A meeting of MLAs, ex-MLAs, office-bearers and senior party workers of the BJP from 10 organisational districts of south Odisha such as Koraput, Rayagada, Malkanagiri, Nabarangpur, Gajapati, Kandhamal, Boudh, Chhatrapur, Bhanjanagar and Brahmapur was held in Berhampur city on Wednesday under the chairmanship of former MP Prasuram Majhi.


Speaking on the occasion, BJP national general secretary (organisation) Ram Lal urged the public, especially youths, to vote for the party in the ensuing general election to see Narendra Modi as the Prime Minister. He recalled that Modi, after becoming chairman of the party’s Campaigning Committee, first visited Puri to seek Lord Jagannath’s blessings before embarking on a countrywide tour. He urged party workers to make Modi’s February 11 rally in Bhubaneswar a great success.
Lal said the BJP has decided to knock at every citizen’s door with an appeal to cast their votes to make Modi the next Prime Minister. He discussed how to effectively manage booths. Odisha is crucial for the BJP as elections for both State Assembly and Parliament are to be held simultaneously here, he said.
BJP State observer Arun Singh said the BJD is responsible for the poverty of Odisha and its Government cannot escape from its liability in the coal and chit fund scams.
BJP leader and former Deputy Speaker of Assembly Rama Chandra Panda said that interestingly common people are ahead of the BJP in creating public opinion for Narendra Modi as the next Prime Minister since they believe that Modi is the right person to lead the national Government as ‘Bikas Purush’. Among others, the party’s senior leader Prasanna Mishra, Ganjam district president Bijay Swain and Bhrugu Buxipatra also spoke.
A public signature campaign was launched by party town president Rama Patra demanding to expedite the Janibilla-Dakshinpur piped water project. The party aims to collect signatures of 50.000 persons from the district for expeditious water supply to Brahmapur. The movement is spearheaded by senior BJP leader Rama Chandra Panda. Source: The Pioneer

Tuesday, 31 December 2013

Tuesday, 24 December 2013

Phailin: ‘Berhampur model’ would be adopted in Philippines and other places: UN representative Margareta Wahlstrom

Phailin pat for Berhampur

A special representative of the UN secretary general for disaster risk reduction, Margareta Wahlstrom, declared the municipal corporation here as a role model for effective co-ordination and preparedness to face a disaster. She handed over a certificate of recognition to Mayor K. Madhaviin Berhampur.

The UN representative congratulated all councillors of the Berhampur Municipal Corporation for restoring normality in the city soon after Phailin. “Disaster is a global problem, and here, the restoration process was very good,” she said. While interacting with the councillors, Wahlstrom particularly wanted to know how the number of casualties was so low as compared to the 1999 super cyclone.


Wahlstrom said the Berhampur model would be adopted in Philippines and other places. The mayor, who received the UN certificate of recognition, said: “The credit for the success of Phailin management goes to all the councillors, commissioner and staff members. It was a team effort.”
Municipal commissioner Ajit Kumar Mishra said: “We requested all the 40 councilors to help evacuate the people from the 254 slum pockets immediately after the meteorological department forecast about the cyclone. The accurate prediction helped us prepare for the cyclone well in advance and the councillors played a key role in disaster management during and after the cyclone,” he said.
Mishra added that 30,000 people had been evacuated in just around 30 hours at that time. Councillor Ashok Shukla, P. Asharani and others apprised Wahlstrom of the steps taken by them during evacuation and restoration.
The UN representative, accompanied by assistant secretary of the Union home ministry Aparna Ganeshan and K.C. Bishoyi of the Odisha Disaster Mitigation Authority, visited a multipurpose cyclone shelter at Matikhal near Chatrapur, Save the Child organisation in Gopalpur, a fishermen’s village called Nua Golabandha and the Berhampur University campus. Source: The Telegraph

Thursday, 31 October 2013

Phailin changes face of ‘green’ Maa Tara Tarini hill Shrine


Nature’s fury in the form of the Phailin cyclone has devastated everything at the famous Tara Tarini hill shrine except the main temple on the hill top.
The 965 feet high hill, which was proud of its lush green vegetation cover, has become totally naked with the brown rocky base showing up. Most of the large trees on this hill have got uprooted or massively damaged by the cyclonic storm. According to secretary of the Tara Tarini Development Board (TTDB) Pramod Panda, they included several decade old banyan and peepul trees. “Due to its lush green nature, this hill was being called Purnagiri or Kumari parvat. But the cyclone seems to have snatched away that identity from the hill,” he said. A cashew plantation of the hill shrine at Sholaghara near the hill has also been completely devastated.
The ropeway station at the foothills of the famous Tara Tarini
mangled with uprooted trees in the aftermath of Cyclone Phailin 

According to the priests and authorities of the TTDB, this hill shrine had not faced such devastation during the two cyclones that hit Ganjam district in 1999.
Major attraction
A major attraction of this hill shrine was the rope way to the hill top. It is an irony that it was to be restarted recently after renovation. But the cyclone has caused much damage to the ropeway which would surely delay its inception.
Although the towers and cables of the ropeway are in place, they have to be checked up to ascertain whether they are strong enough after the cyclone. The carriages of the ropeway have been damaged.
All buildings at the hill top and most buildings at the foot of the hill were damaged by the cyclone. No structure has remained at the hill top except the newly-renovated temple which was completed in 2010.
This temple had been built as per traditional Rekha style of Odia temple architecture. It again proved that Rekha style of temple architecture as per which famous Jagannath temple of Puri and Lingaraj temple of Bhubaneswar have been built can with stand major cyclones.
The stairway and the road to the hill top have been cleared up but drinking water supply and power connectivity to the hill top remains snapped.
For providing drinking water to devotees, water is being taken by tanker to the hill top.
Nature’s fury also had its impact on the flow of devotees to the hill shrine. Very few visitors are visiting the hill shrine and their number was not expected to rise even during the Kali Puja, the priests of the temple said.
Pre cyclone image
Revenue Divisional Commissioner (RDC), southern division, Bikash Mohapatra, who also happens to be president of the TTDB, said all the developmental projects proposed for this hill shrine were also stalled due to the devastation caused by the cyclone.
The TTDB had planned to move around a ‘rath’ in Ganjam district to collect donations for the development of the hill shrine, which cannot be taken up now as the whole district is devastated by the cyclone and the rains and flood that followed.
“We are now planning to start online donation facility for the restoration and reconstruction works at the hill shrine so that devotees living outside could come over to help in rebuilding the hill shrine to its past glory.
Priority

“Our first priority now would be to regenerate the devastated vegetation of the hill shrine in consultation with the forest department,” said the RDC. The aim would be to plant those species of trees on the hill which would sustain cyclonic storms in future and would not get uprooted. But it is for sure for next few years the hill shrine would continue to have a barren look as a memory of wrath of nature which did not spare the hill which was a major centre of faith. Source: The Hindu

Tuesday, 15 October 2013

Ganjam worst hit by Cyclone Phailin, 2.4 lakh houses damaged


Uprooted trees on a road in Berhampur caused by cyclone Phailin (Source: The Hindu)
BERHAMPUR: Hit hardest by Cyclone 'Phailin', the coastal district of Ganjam is estimated to have suffered a loss of at least Rs 3,000 crore in the nature's fury which has deprived lakhs of people of their livelihood and damaged 2.4 lakh houses. Fishermen have suffered massive losses as their nets, boats and catamarans have been damaged. The farming community has also been hit with the standing paddy crop submerged in water. Moved by the tragedy that has struck the hapless people here, Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik, after a visit to relief camps, has ordered payment of Rs 500 each to the affected even as the administration will begin distribution of ration free of cost for two months.
Damaged pandals in Berhampur city in the aftermath of Cyclone Phailin (The Hindu)

Official sources have pegged the loss in Ganjam at more than Rs 3,000 crore in this district alone. Power infrastructure has been damaged to a great extent. "There has been extensive damage to the standing paddy crop as a huge area of land covering paddy fields has been submerged in rain water. There has been huge loss to horticulture farming also as an enormous number of mango and coconut trees have been uprooted," District Collector Krishan Kumar told PTI.
Source: MapsofIndia.Com

He said Ganjam is the worst-affected district in Odisha in terms of loss of livelihood and property. "More than 2.4 lakh houses have been damaged which includes fishermen huts and other 'kutcha' houses," Kumar said. A special relief package for fishermen will also be announced by the government. Fishermen have suffered massive losses as their nets, boats and catamarans have been damaged, the Collector said. He said nine people have lost lives due to cyclone in this district alone.]
Source: PTI, Business Standard, The Hindu
Source: The Sambad

Deserted Berhampur road post-Phailin (Source: The Hindu)

Source: OrissaPost