Posts filed under ‘Sonepur-Binka-Charada-Khaliapali-Kotsamlai-Birmaharajpur’

Odisha government to revive panthasalas and tourist amenities centres

Following is a report from TOI:

BHUBANESWAR: The state government will revive eight defunct panthikas through the public-private partnership (PPP) mode.

These include the panthasalas of Kapilas, Deulajhari, Bargarh and Charchika, Wayside Amenities Centre (WAC) of Jajpur Road, tourist complex of Sonepur and food court at Puri. “The bidders have been finalized,” said tourism minister Maheswar Mohanty.

The government has already brought 11 out of the 31 defunct panthasalas or panthikas under PPP mode, said a government officer in the tourism department.

Besides, he said the government’s amenities centre at Lulung near Baripada is defunct since 2009 due to Maoist problem. Though bidder was selected for operation on PPP mode in 2012, they declined to take over. He said the department is taking steps to make it functional. Similarly, the panthika at Bargarh is non-functional due to staff shortage. The government is taking steps for its renovation, he said.

The officer said the government would invite fresh bid for the panthasala at Sunabeda. “Earlier, the bidder selected for this panthasala declined to take over the property. We have invited fresh bid for this purpose,” he said.

January 3, 2014 at 4:47 am 1 comment

Fishermen on the Mahanadi river near Subarnapur

Fishermen row their boat as they set off for a day’s work on the Mahanadi River near Subarnapur, above 300 kilometers (187 miles) from the eastern Indian city of Bhubaneshwar, India, Thursday, Dec. 22, 2011. (AP Photo/Biswaranjan Rout).

June 16, 2012 at 1:45 am Leave a comment

Patali Mahotsav inaugurated in Kotsamalai

Following is a report from the Sambad:

February 2, 2012 at 7:25 pm Leave a comment

Solar fencing of Barpahad reserve forest, Sonepur still incomplete

Following report is from The Telegraph:

Balangir, June 23: The ambitious project of solar fencing, taken up by Sonepur forest division in the Barpahad reserve forest to minimise human-animal conflict, has run into troubled waters as the project remains incomplete even after a year of its launch.

Taking advantage of the open space, herds of elephants are still venturing into villages that border the forest, often causing damage to life and property. Residents of these villages bordering the Barpahad forest allege elephants were often found straying into the villages in search of food and water through the open space where the solar fencing has not been done.

Sonepur forest range sources said that the solar fencing had been taken up along the 102km perimeter of the Barpahad reserve forest early last year and 49km of solar fencing work had been completed. However work on the remaining 53km could not be done because of a fund crunch leaving the area open for elephants to stray into nearby villages.

“The elephants are eying the water bodies of the village this summer and the local residents are not allowing old persons and women to go to the village pond to fetch water,” Ramjee Sa, a member of the Vana Surakshya Samiti (VSS), said.

Loisingha forest officer Sankirtan Nag said that a herd of 25 elephants, which were earlier in Barapahar forest, were now roaming in the villages of the Loisingha forest area causing widespread fear. “The elephants frequent the ponds during daytime and settle near the water bodies after sunset,” Nag said. Though they have been receiving complaints from the villagers, they can do little in the absence of technical knowledge to handle the elephants.

The villagers have been facing this problem for the past few weeks. This comes at a time when there is severe water crisis. The villagers are now depending on wells and bore-wells, which are drying up fast. Light showers in the last few days have failed to help much.

Divisional forest officer (DFO) of Balangir Raj Kishor Sahu admitted that elephants from Barpahad were straying into the adjoining villages through the areas where solar fencing have not been taken up. “I have sent a proposal to take up 27km of solar fencing of the Barpahad forest that fall in the Balangir division. There would not have been any problem had fencing been taken up in both the divisions simultaneously,’’ the DFO said.

Spread over 4658.70 hectares, Barpahad reserve forest in Sonepur district is home to 28 elephants, says the forest department.

June 24, 2011 at 3:23 pm Leave a comment

Subarna Lok Mahotsav kicks off at Sonepur

Following is from

SONEPUR: THE fiveday Subarna Lok Mahotsav was kicked off by Planning and Coordination Minister A U Singhdeo yesterday. While the morning was confined to holding of boating competition in river Mahanadi, a festival of dance and music was flagged off in the evening at Gandhi Padia here.

In his inaugural address, Singhdeo recalled the rich heritage and tradition of the district and stressed on the need to promote the district as a tourist destination. Later, Gotipua dance from Raghurajpur, Dongria dance from Bhawanipatna, Chhau dance of Keonjhar and Purulia in West Bengal, Bihu dance of Assam besides local folk dance were performed. A development exhibition and Pallishree Mela is also being organised.

February 13, 2011 at 9:06 am Leave a comment

Plans to link Puri to the Patali Srikshetra

Following report is from

BALANGIR: For the first time since Patali Srikshetra was discovered near the Trikuta hill at Kotsamalei village in Sonepur district, Puri Gajapati Divya Singhdeo today visited the place. A high-level team comprising officials of Puri temple administration and Sevayats was there to chalk out plans to link Puri to the place.

Earlier, Patali Srikshetra Action Committee (PSAC) installed the idols of the Trinity, which the Puri temple administration had given them in 2007, after Bigraha puja. It was here that the idols of Lords were kept hidden for 144 years away from the prying eyes of  invaders.

The Gajapati was accorded a warm welcome by the administration, committee and villagers. In his brief speech, he said a bhavya (lively) temple similar to that in Puri will be constructed here. “The natural and panoramic view around Patali Srikshetra inspires me to do a lot for this place, as a sevak of the Lord,” he said. I represent the Puri administration and all the servitors, he added.

Following is another report from The Telegraph:

Sonepur, Feb. 7: Puri king Dibyasingha Deb today appealed to the people to construct an eco-friendly temple for the lords. Speaking at the ongoing Patali Mahotsav in Kotsomalai village of Subarnapur district, he said that environment and spirituality should go hand in hand.

“Nature has given greenery, the hills and the caves to this place. We must not destroy it. I want to see a large and high temple like that of Sri Jagannath temple in Puri to be constructed here, which should be built with minimum exploitation of nature. When I come here next time I want to see a temple that would be eco-friendly,” the king said.

He further said that the Sri Jagannath temple management authorities in Puri would be ready to provide all help for the construction of an eco-friendly temple here.

“The Puri temple authorities will be happy to extend help to the Patali Srikshetra management. The administration here should go ahead with construction of the temple,” he added.

A chariot named ‘Dana Ratha’ is presently travelling across the state to collect funds for a proposed temple at Kotsomalai, popularly known as Patali Srikshetra.

Yesterday, idols of the three lords, which were kept in a house in Kotsomalai village in Subarnapur district for over three years, were installed in a newly constructed temple amidst chants of Jai Jagannath and Hari Bol by thousands of devotees on the occasion of the ongoing Patali Mahotsav. Mahanta of Jhanjapita Matha of Puri, Baba Sachidananda Das, carried out the rituals of the ceremony associated with the installation of deities in the presence of a team of sevayats who have come to the Patali Srikshetra for the ongoing festival.

This morning, hundreds of women brought holy water in a ‘Kalasa Yatra’ to the Snana Mandap of the temple. Later, the devotees performed ‘pahandi’ of the three lords. The deities of the lords will be kept there for three days for ‘darshan’ of the devotees.

Later, eminent music director Manmath Mishra performed bhajans, instilling a pious atmosphere there.

The Puri Jagannath temple administration had specially made the idols of lords Jagannath, Balabhadra and Subhadra by spending Rs 55,000 from its treasury, and donated the idols to the Patali Srikshetra authorities for installation in the proposed temple in 2007. However, the idols of the lords were kept in a house in the village, as the temple was under construction at that time.

February 8, 2011 at 3:19 pm Leave a comment

Art camp to highlight tourism potential of the Subarnapur district

Following items are from The Telegraph:

Sonepur, Feb. 7: The Sonepur district administration invited 18 painters from across the state last week to capture their impression of the district on canvas. Through this unique initiative, the administration wants to highlight the tourism potential of Sonepur district.

As part of the four-day camp that concluded on Saturday, the artists were taken to various tourist destinations to help them get an idea about the tourism potential of the district.

“During the first two days of the camp, guides took the artists to various tourists destinations in the district and briefed them about the places and monuments to help them understand their importance. Finally, in the last two days, the artists brought out their impression of Sonepur on canvas,” said artist Saroj Mahapatra, who was the coordinator of the camp.

“Some of the themes explored by the artists were saint poet Bhima Bhoi and Rameswar, the confluence of river Mahanadi and Tel,” he added.

Veteran artists like Padmanava Mishra of Sambalpur and Srikant Udgata of Balangir were part of the camp.

Sambalpur-based artist Padmanava Mishra, who was born in Sonepur, was exulted to be back here and paint.

“I have many memories attached to Sonepur as I was born here and spent a good part of my life. The temples, river Mahanadi and nature have always inspired me and they have been my favourite subjects. In this camp, I tried my hand at the Shaiba and Shakta tradition of Sonepur,” Mishra said.

Mishra added that he had done a series of paintings on Bhima Bhoi that he wants to hand over to the district administration.

Gadadhar Barik, district culture officer of Subarnapur, said the camp was an initiative to highlight the tourism potential of Sonepur through the paintings.

“This collection of paintings is regarded as property of Subarnapur and will adorn Sanskriti Bhavan, which will come up soon.

“The artists have explored all the themes and places including the temples, philosophy, nature and rivers of Sonepur.

“Now, we have a collection of 24 paintings. Whatever places these artists haven’t explored, will be painted soon in another camp. There will be an exhibition of these paintings during the Subarna Utsav-2011, which begins next Friday,” Barik said.

February 8, 2011 at 2:35 pm Leave a comment

Puri Gajapati visits Patali Srikshetra at Subarnapur district

Following news is from TOI:

BALANGIR: Patali Srikshetra, where the idol of Lord Jagannath from Puri was believed to have been kept hidden for 144 years to protect it from the attack of invaders, was sanctified by the presence of Puri Gajapati (king) Dibya Singhdeo here on Monday. The Srikshetra is located at Kotsamalei village in Subarnapur district.

This is the first visit of the Gajapati after Patali Srikshetra was discovered near Trikuta hill in Subarnapur. At the time of discovery, a high-level team comprising officials of the Puri temple administration and Sevayats had visited the place and chalked out a plan to link Puri to the place.

With around 50,000 people gathering at Kotsamalei, the Gajapati received a warm welcome from the administration and the committee of Patali Srikshetra Utsav. In his brief speech, the king asserted that a bhavya’ (grand) temple in the pattern of Puri would be constructed here. “Given the natural and panoramic view around Patali Srikshetra, I am inspired to do a lot for this place as I am a sevak of the lord,” said the Gajapati. He said that this time he represented the Puri administration and all the servitors.

Before the visit of the Gajapati, three idols of Lord Jagannath, given to the Patali Srikshetra Action Committee ( PSAC) by the Puri temple administration for worship, were installed through Bigraha Puja. The three idols were sent from Puri to Kotsamalei in 2007. But for some reasons, the car festival couldn’t be organized and the idols were kept packed in a room. Earlier villagers celebrated the festival in their own way with limited means.

As per history, Lord Jagannath was kept underground at the Trikuta hills in Gopalli village twice about a thousand years ago. The lord was brought to the village and hidden underground at the hill for 45 years when Raktabahu attacked the temple in the last part of the eighth century. He was again kept underground for some years when Kalapahada attacked the shrine.

This claim has been substantiated in various publications like Madalapanji’, Sonepur Itihas’, Sonepur Rajagruha Chandrika’, Swarnapur Gunadarsa’, Kaliaka Purana’, Dasakumara Charita’ and many other durbar publications of the erstwhile Sonepur state. Historians also claim that while the permanent abode of the lord was called Srikshetra (Puri), the place where he was hidden was called Patali Srikshetra.

February 7, 2011 at 7:28 pm Leave a comment

Installation of the idols of lord Jagannath, lord Balabhadra and goddess Subhadra will take place in Patali Srikshetra

These idols, kept in the house of a villager in Kotsomalai for the last three years, would be installed in a temple during the Patali Mahotsav next month. Telegraph picture

Following is from The Telegraph:

Sonepur, Jan. 23: Idols of Lord Jagannath, Lord Balabhadra and Goddess Subhadra, which have been kept in a house at Kotsomalai village in Subarnapur district for over three years, will soon be installed in a temple in the village.

The idols, which were donated by the Puri temple administration to the management of Patali Srikshetra in Kotsomalai about three years back, would now be shifted to a newly constructed temple during the Patali Mahotsav (the annual car festival). The festival is scheduled to begin on February 3.

Gajapati Maharaja of Puri Dibyasingha Deb is expected to attend the installation ceremony of the lords. Sources said Kotsomalai village, which became famous after the Puri temple administration had granted it the Patali Srikshetra status, was unable to observe the annual car festival for the past three years as the deities could not be installed.

District culture officer Gadadhar Barik said the installation ceremony would take place during Patali Mahotsav.

Barik said several people had come forward to donate for the daily expenditure of the deities. “There are several people who have offered for the puja and other daily expenditure of the deities. We have already got donations of Rs 500 each from 365 persons from across the state for daily expenditure. It will last a year,” Barik said.

He also said a new and bigger temple would soon come up at Patali Srikshetra. Puri temple administration has specially made the idols of Jagannath, Balabhadra and Subhadra for nearly Rs 55,000 from the temple treasury and donated the idols to the action committee for installation in 2007.

On hearing the news, Jagannath devotees are happy. “I had been waiting for this day. The past few years had been painful for us as we couldn’t celebrate the car festival at Patali Srikshetra as the gods and goddess had not been installed. Now, we will be able to observe the car festival here,” said a villager of Kotsomalai.

A team, led by the then chief administrator of Puri Jagannath temple, Suresh Mahapatra, and researchers on Jagannath cult and sevayats of the temple, visited Kotsomalai village in 2007. They pronounced that Lord Jagannath had been hidden in a cave at the nearby Trikuta hills for 144 years to get rid of the attack of Raktabahu and Kalapahad.

The Puri temple administration has announced all possible help for development of the area and in a rare gesture, donated the idols for installation at Patali Srikshetra.

January 25, 2011 at 9:44 am Leave a comment

Tourism boost plan for Sonepur town

Update from The Telegraph: Sonepur to have ring road

Sonepur, Jan. 20: Chief minister Naveen Patnaik today laid the foundation for embankment and construction of the ring road along the banks of the river Mahanadi here. The ring road will not only decongest traffic in the city but also prevent floods.

A joint venture of the state water resource and road and building (R&B) departments, the embankment and the road constructions will be done over a length of 5.1 km on the right banks of Mahanadi from the bridge over the river to the bridge over river Tel. The project is being executed at an estimated cost of Rs21.74 crore.

Addressing a public meeting at Gandhi ground, Naveen said his government was taking care of the overall development of the state. “We are trying to ensure all-round development of our state. The farmers are being given utmost importance and their problems are being looked at sensibly. We intend to uplift the socio-economic status of the scheduled castes and scheduled tribes. We have decided to distribute cycles to school going SC and ST students,” Naveen said.

He inaugurated the office buildings of superintendent of police, regional transport office and reserve police. He also inaugurated Swarnatoya Cric Fete, the silver jubilee edition of the All India Lalmoney Cricket Tournament.

Talking about the embankment and road project, executive engineer of Balangir irrigation division Naresh Nayak said it would not only act as flood control measure, but also minimise traffic hazards.

Following is from The Telegraph:

Sonepur, Jan. 19: Plans are on to begin a number of projects in Sonepur to exploit the tourism potential of the town.

The government is planning to build an embankment along the Mahanadi to turn it into a tourist hub. Chief minister Naveen Patnaik would lay the foundation of the embankment and the ring road along the river bank here on on Thursday

The ring road would be 3.6km long and would run from the bridge over the Mahanadi to the bridge over Tel. Initially budgeted at Rs 21 crore, the project, which includes the road and the embankment, would be funded by the Union ministry of water resources and Nabard.

Sonepur District Peoples’ Action Committee chairman Gobinda Maharana said the project would serve the dual purpose of communication and tourism. “The demand was there since 1980 but the committee had launched a movement two years ago. Our efforts have been rewarded,” he said.

January 20, 2011 at 11:31 am Leave a comment

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