Legendary leader Biju Patnaik’s birth celebration has completed today with much fanfare. CM Naveen Patnaik, party members give the Floral tributes at Biju Patnaik’s statue at Assembly on his birth centenary.18-feet high statue of the late statesman unveiled at Airport Square in Bhubaneswar.Sand art exhibition inaugurated at Bhubaneswar.
About Biju Patnaik:-
Bijayananda Patnaik, popularly known as Biju Patnaik from 5 march 1916 to 17 April 1997. Biju Patnaik was born on 5 March 1916 to Lakshminarayan and Ashalata Patnaik. His parents belong to Ganjam district, G.Nuagan village at Bhanjanagar area which is 80 km from Bramhapur town. Biju Patnaik completed his early education at the Mission Primary School and Mission Christ Collegiate of Cuttack. admitted into the intermediate science class of the famous Ravenshaw College, where he was a talented sportsman and headed the football, hockey, athletics and cricket team of the University. He was the sports champion for continuously three years but due to his interest in aviation he dropped out and trained as a pilot.He studied Aeronautics at the Aeronautical Training Institute of India. Patnaik flew with private airlines but at the start of the Second World War he joined the Royal Indian Air Force eventually becoming head of air transport command.
Biju Patnaik was married to Gyan Patnaik. Biju Patnaik’s younger son, Naveen Patnaik, is the current Chief Minister of Odisha. His daughter, Gita Mehta, is an English writer. His elder son Prem Patnaik is a Delhi based industrialist.
In 1946 Biju Patnaik was elected uncontested to the Odisha Legislative Assembly from North Cuttack constituency.In 1952 and 1957 he won from Jagannath Prasad and Surada, respectively. In 1961 he assumed the presidency of the state Congress. Under his leadership, the Congress Party won 82 of 140 seats and Patnaik (representing Chowdwar constituency) became the chief minister of Odisha on 23 June 1961 and remained in the position until 2 October 1963 when he resigned from the post under the Kamaraj Plan to revitalise the Congress party. He was the Chief Minister of Odisha at the age of 45. Patnaik was close to Indira Gandhi who took over the Congress Party in 1967.
In 1969 he left from the Congress party and create a regional party as- the Utkal Congress. In the 1971 assembly poll, his party did reasonably well. Biju Patnaik then re-established contact with his old friend Jayaprakash Narayan and plunged into the JP movement as it picked up momentum in 1974.in the same year, he was elected to the Lok Sabha for the first time from Kendrapara and became Union minister for steel and mines in both the Morarji Desai and the Charan Singh governments until 1979. He was re-elected to the Lok Sabha again in 1980 and 1984 from Kendrapara as Janata Party candidate despite the Congress wave in 1984 following Indira Gandhi’s death. In 1990 state assembly election, the Janata Dal received a thumping majority (two third assembly seats) which saw Biju Patnaik being the Chief Minister of Odisha for the second time until 1995. He was re-elected to the Lok Sabha in 1996 from Cuttack and Aska constituencies as a Janata Dal candidate. He retained the latter until his death on 17 April 1997 of cardio-respiratory failure.
In 1951 he established the international Kalinga Prize for popularization of Science and Technology among the people and entrusted the responsibility to the UNESCO. The projects which he was known to have spearheaded includes the Port of Paradip.
To be born poor is not a crime but to remain so is indeed a crime’. ‘Be loyal not to me but to the destiny of the State’. ‘Odisha is a rich state where poor people live’. ‘Be a pride to your State and not a shame’.
“In my dream of the 21st century for the State, I would have young men and women who put the interest of the State before them. They will have pride in themselves, confidence in themselves. They will not be at anybody’s mercy, except their own selves. By their brains, intelligence and capacity, they will recapture the history of Kalinga.”- Biju Patnaik
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