governor- The New Indian Express

Express News Service

BHUBANESWAR: Governor Ganeshi Lal on Saturday said Odisha exemplifies a mini universe in itself with peaceful coexistence of people and the spirit of the State lies in its cottages.

Delivering special address on “New Ideas for New India: The view from Raj Bhawan” at the 8th edition of Odisha Literary Festival, the Governor said the culture of the people knows no distinction of caste, creed or colour.

It is a celebration of the sublime and the spiritual.

“The spirit of non-violence is not nurtured in the factory of civilization. It can only flourish in the self contentedness of the people living in villages. Go to any village you will certainly feel the pulse of a saint or seer (pious person) working in a cottage,” he said.

The cult of Jagannath imbibes the people of the state to embrace non-violence, love and laughter. Simplicity is the hallmark of the people of Odisha and they live in their own world.

After nearly 500 interactions and encounters with people of all shades and colour, the Governor said the spirit of Odisha lies in its cottages.

Great literature, art and craft are created and nurtured in an environment of penury and this is possible despite because the land is the abode of Lord Jagannath.

“We have heard of different Avatars of God. I find all the Avatars in this holy land. In my view Odisha is not a state but a universe in itself,” he said.

Speaking of the strength and indomitable spirit of the people of the state, the Governor said natural calamities (which he describes as prodigal sons of the God) come to the state to test their tenacity and patient.

But Odisha has always overcome the catastrophes and reinvents itself. Paying his tribute to noted poet Jayant Mohapatra, the Governor described the former as one the great son of the soil.

Delivering the keynote address, internationally-acclaimed poet Jayanta Mahaptra said poetry is where language happens. The language used in poetry is examined for the truth it contains.

“Poetry is a surrender to the flux of a language born out of both history and society, thus implying that poems are where the language gets made because of the poet’s belief in himself/herself. Through poetry language either gets richer or poorer, healthier or sicker,” he said.

In a way, poets are participating in the catastrophes of the world.

Any sensitive person sees the enemy in the valleys of Kashmir, in the napalm- ridden girl running for her life in Vietnam, in the boy run over by a tank in Tiananmen Square or at the World Trade Centre in New York, he said.

“I cannot escape these wreckages of history like the inhuman massacre of hundred thousand Odias by emperor Asoka in 261 BC,” he said while delving on the issue of what his writing was influenced by. In his introductory remarks, Editorial Director of The New Indian Express Prabhu Chawla said this is a platform which gives an opportunity from all walks of life to express their views and halve a healthy discussion.

The idea is to showcase Odisha as another place where literature flourish and there are many talented people here.

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