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  • , Contents Page 1


    Volume 52 March 2015

  • , Contents Page 2


    Newsletter of the Odisha Society of the Americas

    Volume 52 March 2015

    Tapan Padhi


    Sikhanda Satpathy Vice President

    Sabita Panigrahi Secretary

    Prashanta Ranabijuli Treasurer

    Satya Pattanaik Editor

    Soman Panigrahi

    Technical Editor Spring: Photo courtesy Babru Samal

    Suchitra G. Das Cover Art

    Babru Samal

    Mrutyunjaya Behera Photography

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    / 5

    Executive Messages:

    Tapan Padhi 6 Sikhanda Satapathy 9

    Sabita Panigrahi 10

    Prashanta Ranabijuli 11 12

    13 Gagan Panigrahi 23

    Bigyani Das 24

    Barun Pani 25

    Swarupa Samanta 26

    Sarthak Das 27

    Satya Pattanaik 28

    Girija Shankar Mishra 29

    Prashant Bhuyan 30

    Sasmita Mohanty 31

    Parashar Mishra 32

    Shashadhar Mohapatra 34

    Sulochana Patnaik 36

    Subrat Mohanty 37

    Amiya kumar Mohanty 38

    Aryabela Nayak 40

    Raghunath Dass 41

    Sabita Samal 42

    Sikhanda Satapathy 43

    Nrusingha Mishra 44

    Surya Nayak 45

    Anwesha Ranabijuli 46

    Tanmay Panda 48

    Suchitra G Das 49

    Sunanda Mishra 50

    Darshan Panda 51

    Babru Samal 52

    Sobha Dash 53

    Raju Sharma 56

    Interview with Prof Chitta Baral 58

    Interview with Isha Mohapatra 63

    Profile: Vaibhab Mohanty 65

    Profile: Siddharth Misra 70

    Nabakalebar 2015 74

    Odia Translation Work 90

    Amiya Kumar Mohanty 129

    News 140

    Chapter Report: CANOSA 142

    Global Odia Convention 146

    BOG Minutes of Meeting 152

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    (selfless volunteering) , ? , (hidden agenda) ,

    (timepass) , ,

    (self motivated)



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    Tapan Padhi President, OSA

    Dear Friends,

    I take great pleasure in inviting you and your family and friends to attend Global Odisha Conference at The

    John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts and OSA annual convention in Gaylord National Resort

    and Convention Center, National Harbor, Maryland, USA on July 1 through July 4 2015.

    The Odisha Society of Americas (OSA) is developing a unique international platform to promote

    collaboration and partnership among Odias residing in developed countries and in Odisha. The Conference

    is envisioned to bring in a transformational change to the Odia diaspora. It is an initiative to congregate

    successful Odias in various professional, cultural and educational field around the world to contribute to

    the development of Odisha and India. This is in line with the vision of the Government of India that each

    state should constitute its own global talent pool. Our effort is geared towards accepting the challenge to

    globalize Odisha.

    In addition to providing a platform, we are also looking forward to building this network of immigrant

    Odias from all developed countries who share same challenges and social life in an adopted country.

    Raising our children in a foreign land who are the second generation immigrants with a proper inculcation

    of our own Odia pride and culture, has been a mammoth task for every immigrant parents.

    We are inviting several key stake holders from USA and India, and internationally acclaimed personalities

    in Indian art, culture, education, business and media. Highlights of some of the planned activities are a

    spectacular cultural program in the Kennedy Center, White House Briefing, Capitol Hill luncheon, meeting

    with U.S. Chamber of Commerce, and business visits to national institutes of interest.

    As far as OSA activities are concerned, on the occasion of Utkala Divas to commemorate the Odisha

    foundation day, let us take this opportunity to salute Odia pioneers - Utkala Gaurav Madhusudan Das,

    Utkalamani Gopabandhu Das, Fakir Mohan Senapati, Gangadhar Meher and many others who have left

    behind their legacy that we are so proud of. Odia immigrants around the world celebrate this occasion and

    some chapters of OSA have also plans for celebration this month. I am very glad to share following

    activities of OSA.

    1. New Chapter Inauguration Celebration: Our youngest chapter - Rocky Mountain chapter celebrated the

    inaugural program on January 10 at Broomfield Auditorium in Denver, Colorado. I had the rare privilege

    to inaugurate the program and am extremely proud of local chapter members who showcased Odisha and

    Odia culture to more than 300 Non Odia speaking attendees through acts, dance, drama and above all

    displaying multitude audio visuals. Under the leadership of Sadhu Behera and Subrat Mishra, these 15

    Odia families had put their heart and soul to organize and delivered an excellent program.For further

    details - please contact Sadhu Behera .

    2. OSA Help Line: OSA has introduced a Help Line available through our website

    (http://www.odishasociety.org/). This "help an individual" number HAI-888-4OSA (424-888-4672) is

    mailto:sadhu.[email protected]://www.odishasociety.org/tel:%28424-888-4672

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    actively monitored by volunteers. We have defined mission of OSA Helpline, How it

    works, What is Offered, Administrative Requirements, Designing and structuring OSA telephone helpline

    service, Who will benefit from OSA telephone helpline, What issues should the helpline service

    cover, Helpline timing, How to manage OSA Helpline service etc. This has been possible due to sincere

    effort of BOG members Prashanta Ranabijuli ([email protected]) and Pramod Mahapatra

    ([email protected]). Please contact them as we need volunteers to make this helpline useful to

    those who truly need it.

    3. OSA Library Initiative: It is a matter of great news that Govt of Odisha has accepted OSA's proposal to

    invest the money donated by OSA members to modernize public libraries in Phailin affected area. The

    effort will be carried out by Odisha Govt to implement the proposal submitted by OSA. I have attached the

    latest official order received from Odisha Govt for your reference. In normal circumstances, the donors to

    chief minister relief fund can not determine how the donation can be applied. OSA contacted Chief

    Secretary, General Administration department and initiated the effort with letters and phone

    calls. However, due to persistent effort of our local member Mr. Ashok Rath, Library committee chair

    Nishikant Sahoo, library committee members Priyadarsan Patra, Sandip Dasverma and many others, this

    could be possible. Lot of follow up is needed to ultimately reach the goal. Please contact Nishikant Sahoo

    at [email protected].

    4. New website: We would like to acknowledge our new web design committee members Dr Rupa Misra

    and Susant Routray who spent countless hours to collect survey data and followed website research results

    of current trend to design a new website for OSA. This website is not yet fully developed but the beta

    version is available at www.odishasociety.net. You have any comments, please contact Bikash Panda at

    [email protected] or Ranjan Tripathy at [email protected].

    5. OSA Investment: After the thorough review/recommendation of Finance committee and after due BOG

    approval of the proposal, OSA treasurer Prashant Ranabijuli led the effort to invest OSA deposits in safe

    investment and I am glad to report that we have increased the balance by more than $3000/ so far as a

    return of our investment.

    6. Membership database: OSA Executive Committee has recommended to develop a new membership

    database which will be sole official property of OSA to be administered by OSA Treasurer and OSA

    Secretary. The design of this database and development of the program is in progress. If you have any

    comments and suggestions, please contact Prashanta ranabijuli at [email protected].

    7. Champu, Chanda, Odissi: For the first time, OSA has now included instrumental program participant in

    addition to vocal participants in CCO competition. For further details, please contact Sabita Panigrahi at

    [email protected].

    8. OSA Awards, Convention Guideline and Guests: OSA Vice President is pursuing constitutional

    mandated programs regarding various awards to be awarded during convention and chairs the guest

    selection committee of OSA. For further details please contact Sikhanda Satapathy at

    [email protected]

    9. OSA Election: OSA election is conducted by election committee and as per the election committee

    message in OSANet, the ballot papers have been mailed to each OSA Member. For some reason if you

    have not received the ballot paper please contact election committee at

    [email protected]. Please note that OSA Election Committee operates independently without

    mailto:[email protected]:[email protected]:[email protected]://www.odishasociety.net/http://gmail.com/mailto:[email protected]:[email protected]:[email protected]:[email protected]:[email protected]

  • , Contents Page 8

    any Executive Committee members involvement. For any election related questions,

    please contact election committee at [email protected]

    10. Global Odisha Conference: Our vision of globalizing Odisha does require partnership between OSA,

    global Odias and GoO, both in terms of intellectual partnership and funding is necessary to facilitate

    it. The funds from Govt of Odisha are meant to be Odisha government's share to participate in GOC that

    OSA is putting together with it's own fund through registration and fund raising. Your active participation

    is very much needed to make this conference successful. Please influence your friends and families who

    reside in other countries to join this conference. Please contact convener Pratap Das at

    [email protected], co convener Leena Mishra at [email protected] and Co-convener/Vice

    President Sikhanda Satapathy at [email protected].

    As you are aware by now, Global Odisha Conference has six symposium tracks under leadership of

    accomplished OSA members. This symposium tracks are critical to the success of this conference. For

    example a track on Health is planned where professionals in health related areas will deliberate on several

    focus areas of interest to global Odia diaspora and issues related to Odisha. Health and Family Welfare

    Minister of Odisha Government's participation would make deliberations effective and the successful

    establishment of collaborative efforts with Government of Odisha would be possible. Please contact track

    chairs to better understand the goal and vision, share your ideas, and offer in which way you would be able

    to participate, contribute to make this symposium successful.

    Track Chairs

    Education - Mr. Binod Nayak - [email protected]

    Business - Dr. Ajay Mohanty - [email protected]

    Tourism - Dr. Chitta Baral - [email protected]

    Health - Dr. Pinaki Panigrahi - [email protected]

    Spiritual - Mr Satya Patnaik - [email protected]

    Literature - Dr. Bigyani Das - [email protected]

    If you have any questions or comments, please do not hesitate to contact me at

    [email protected].


    Tapan Padhi

    President, OSA

    mailto:[email protected]:[email protected]:[email protected]:[email protected]:[email protected]:[email protected]:[email protected]:[email protected]:[email protected]:[email protected]:[email protected]

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    Sikhanda Satapathy Vice President, OSA

    OSA has been busy in the last quarter with regular business of the society such as

    convention planning and the election.

    Convention: This years convention is being planned at a scale hither-to-unseen in OSA

    history. Many exciting items are in the cards for the attendees as you can find on the

    convention website. There would be celebration of Odia culture, dance, drama, literature and art. As the adults

    seep in Odia bonhomie, the young adults will participate in many youth activities specifically designed for

    them. For those with interest in developmental and intellectual pursuits, a two-day Global Odisha Conference

    preceeds the convention with a variety of tracks on education, business, literature, tourism, health and

    spiritualism. Many volunteers from the Washington DC area and outside are actively engaged to make this

    convention successful. Please register soon and make plans to attend the celebration from July 1-4.

    Election: This year we have two sets of good candidates for the OSA election. The candidates have contributed

    heavily to OSA in various capacities as executives, convener, chapter president and volunteers for Odia cause.

    Irrespective of who wins, I am confident that OSA will be in good hands. The election committee has carried

    out its duties timely and cordially. I would like to thank all OSA members who have participated in this

    important business of the society. I certainly hope that there wouldnt be any undue psephology post-election

    and all will stand behind whoever wins the popular vote.

    Last convention: Last years convention finance report is almost ready. Thanks to the organizers of the

    successful convention that there was a net profit made at the end. Some may argue that the convention shouldnt

    be used to generate any net funds for the society. First of all, it is very difficult to balance the income and

    expenses given the uncertain nature of fund raising, which perhaps forces the organisers to be on the safe side

    and underspend. Secondly, if one accounts for the sweat dollars of volunteers, there is a tremendous value for

    the attendees irrespective of the net proceeds. Another issue from the last convention has also been passionately

    discussed in private and public. It turns out that some attendees in the Ohio convention did not pay OSA

    membership fee. While it is unfortunate that despite good efforts from the executives and some organisers such

    error crept into an otherwise successful convention, the solution is not in finger pointing at volunteers, rather it

    lies in improving the procedures to prevent such issues in the future. The latter approach is being pursued.

    Nepal disaster and OSA emergency funds: Several thousand lives were lost in the unfortunate recent earth

    quake in Nepal. The Odisha Society of America grieves for the great loss to human live and limb and the

    massive set back faced by the local economy. We urge all our members to generously contribute to the charity

    organizations who are carrying out excellent relief work in that region. Some have suggested that OSA

    Emergency fund could be used to support this purpose. While this suggestion has some merit, the current

    emergency fund guideline stipulates that the emergency fund should not be used for non-Odisha disasters, even

    though members should be encouraged for direct support. The primary reason for this policy, in my mind, is to

    channelize our limited collective effort to Odisha needs and mobilize members for direct donation for all other

    needs, be it elsewhere in India, Nepal, or elsewhere in the world.

    I am looking forward to seeing you at the convention this year. Thank you!

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    Sabita Panigrahi Secretary, OSA

    Dear members,


    The web address for OSA is http://www.odishasociety.org/. I highly recommend that you visit the site

    frequently. You can find information about our activities, newsletter Utkarsa, monthly Board Of Governance

    (BOG) meeting minutes, yearly general body meeting minutes and many more. Also you will find various

    guidelines such as convention guidelines and award guide lines. In a nut shell you will find answers to many of

    your questions and important information about the organization. If you want to contact the executives or any

    chapter representatives you can also find the contact information. I encourage each and every member of OSA to spread the message of the organization and help educate fellow

    Odias to become members of OSA. I also repeatedly request all of the OSA parents to encourage their adult children, who are above 18 years old, to

    become OSA members.

    I have attached this quarters BOG meeting minutes.


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    Prashanta Ranabijuli Treasurer, OSA

    Dear Friends, The strength of a volunteer based organization is a measurement of the cohesiveness of its members and their

    willingness to work together towards a common goal. Having seen OSAs operation closely in the past two

    years I have appreciation of OSAs volunteers. Anything and everything we see at OSA there is someone behind

    it. For every little success there is someones effort. Let us aim high. If there is a problem let us find the root of

    the problem and address it. Let our success not be over shadowed by a few shortcomings. In this report I want to update on the following items. OSAs long-term investment update

    OSAs long-term investment grew solidly in this quarter. As you know $150,000 was invested for long-term

    growth in November 2014. You will be pleased to know that in just 5 months the investment account has grown

    by more than $3,000. The investment balance as of 03/31/2015 stands at $153,114.18. Helpline update

    OSAs Helpline (424-888-4672 or HAI-888-4OSA) is now functional in pilot mode. Within a month of

    operation we have already received a call from a distressed family through the Helpline.

    Currently the Helpline is being monitored by OSA Executives and Helpline Committee members. But in order

    to make this program successful we need more volunteers to watch the Helpline. If you are interested to

    volunteer, please contact me. Emergency Relief Fund update

    Thanks to the donations by members, Emergency Relief Fund balance has increased to $15,305.62 as of

    03/31/2015. This is not a large sum yet but still large enough for small emergency situations. I hope more

    donors will participate in the Annual Fundraising Event in 2015 to improve the Emergency Relief Fund balance. Miscellaneous updates

    I am happy to inform you that OSA has obtained a PAN card from the Income Tax Department in India.

    In recent years receiving money from India had become a challenge because of the requirement to furnish PAN

    number of the recipient. As OSA receives a lot of funding from India during conventions it became necessary

    to obtain a PAN card for OSA.

  • , Contents Page 12

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    aj aeN

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    da_e Ah ]B

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  • , Contents Page 44

    Reward of Boldness

    Nrusingha Mishra

    Emboldened in the face of snow, ice, blizzards, cold chill standing strong and tall Spring kept fighting back against all these odds to see the enemies fall

    These forces kept persistent attacks to come back and reign furious

    But the power of spring ultimately prevailed and came out victorious

    Things settled down with waves of new zest and vigor in the animals and plant vegetation

    Gentle breeze from the south and warmth from the bright sun brought magical transformation

    Luscious green foliage with colorful flower blossoms filled the landscape in unparalleled scenery

    Golden orioles and cuckoos filled the air with unforgettable musical symphony

    Germantown, Maryland

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    Melting into Eternity

    Surya Nayak

    Cloudy Sky, Rain-drops hanging like a canopy;

    Making the atmosphere dim,

    And thoughtful.

    Standing lone on my balcony

    I looked at the horizon

    I see you smiling at me,

    From within your almond-split eyes

    My heart rushed towards you,

    Fully drenched with your smile,

    I felt a meaningful jerk within me,

    And goose-bumps populated over my


    It is not,

    That I cannot live without you, but

    I do not want to live without you.

    I want to absorb,

    each of the sun rays

    That reflects towards me

    From the touch of your body.

    I want to breathe the air,

    That swirled around you

    and breeze past you

    I want to feel your hairs

    that caress your breasts and

    spears towards me

    I Closed My Eyes,

    I feel your soul to dissolving in me, and

    You melt slowly like a candle

    Your breasts, pressing my ribcage.

    You make me melt into eternity.

    Germantown, Maryland

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    A poem for Spring

    Anwesha Ranabijuli

    The first splatters of rain drip



    The pouring showers that rage




    The rivers that overflow into our domain




    Water is life

    the stimuli to all

    Water is also a sign

    of nature shouting Spring's call

    The flowers that blossom that bloom

    some as round as the full moon

    even the buds that are

    too late

    too soon

    couldn't have grown without the help of

    a dew

    a dew

    a drop

    a dripping drop of dew

    so many names for one substance

    many seemingly new

    But it can be shown

    through words alone

    that water is spring

    and spring must be shown

    the birth of a baby

    whether it be



  • , Contents Page 47


    signals the start of a new life

    but that life cannot continue

    without a helping hand

    so Water is a necessity

    to bring life to the Land

    Water is life

    Water is substance

    Water is even what allows us to dance

    but truth be told

    I think we all know

    that Water is Spring

    and Spring must be shown

    The first splatters of rain




    The pouring showers that rage




    The rivers that overflow into our





    Water is life

    the stimuli to all

    Water is also the foundation

    of what makes Spring different from Fall

    Round Rock, Texas

  • , Contents Page 48


    Tanmay Panda

    We had lost all the colours Amidst the whiteness of the earth

    Forcing us into the interiors

    Winter has been showing its wrath.

    But nothing is permanent

    So you O winter

    You have to and you must go

    See the people have already started to cheer

    After the dull and dreary winter

    The spring is back again

    People will enjoy their weekends

    In parks, lakeshores and their small garden

    The grass will turn green

    All around there will be flowers

    Nature will manifest its marvellous beauty

    With bright sunshine and light intermittent


    Men will come to Bermudas

    And women will have their dresses of best


    Camps, picnics, outings and long drives

    Will keep busy everyone outdoors

    O spring you are the best gift of the nature

    You make our lives livelier

    Even though I know you have to go

    I cherish I can keep you throughout the year.

    Toronto, Canada

  • , Contents Page 49

    Cherry Blossoms and Time

    Suchitra G. Das

    Boulevards fluff up in cotton-candy Blooming in boughs; scent of soil mingle

    Woodsy fragrance of partial flowers,

    White, and baby pink, soft petals

    Rain at the hint of a breeze;

    At a distance, migrating south,

    Pollen lifts bird-like in a swarm

    When wind whips up a storm.

    I had my own, a single cherry tree,

    In front of my red door, telling time

    In spring, pink; blood maroon in summer,

    Leaflets mottled in fall, leafless winter.

    Cast the perfect hour, it did in precision,

    No heat could sear; nor blustery cold bend

    It away from its job

    From sun up to sun down.

    From the parting of its branches

    I see moon peep out quarterly.

    From the shadow of its leaves,

    I discover a pattern of stars.

    Keeper of time, sentinel of dark

    Harbinger of spring, blossoms amuck.

    Fremont, California

  • , Contents Page 50


    Sunanda Mishra

    Fragrance is in the air, I m walking on with grace.. Luscious, green grass is reflecting the sunlight on my face

    Smile is hanging from my lips, but my eyes have to tell something else..

    Looking up at the sky.. I can see your face..

    Painted with smile on the huge canvass..

    I've turned into a stranger, with a smile that is fake..

    Eyes are crying loudly with the series of pain..

    Those you had gifted me when you were the dearest..

    Hugged all the pains thinking these must be called love..

    I was deep drowned in love then when love was a stranger..

    Opened my eyes & found myself in deep darkness..

    Unable to feel the beauty of this spring, puzzled with color blindness..

    Crossing your path with a smile that is fake..

    I am a stranger to you with a long silence & unwelcome flashback...

    Detroit, Michigan

  • , Contents Page 51

    My Dear Flower

    Darshan Panda

    Inside this flower Lies my small world

    Flower, my dear Flower

    As your petals opened

    I saw a never seen beauty

    Is she from a different world ?

    Flower , my dear flower ,

    As your petals leave you ,

    And you go back to that absolute power ,

    Where go all

    Will you take my kiss

    For your coronal ?

    Flower , my dear Flower,

    I too would go ,

    And mingle with that absolute power ,

    Why to be sad for that

    Where we will dwell in infinity

    And where light is shadow of a shade

    Cuttack, Odisha, India

    http://www.babru.com/garden/slides/FlowersMay13 (63).JPG

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    The Spring Break

    Babru Samal

    After our release from the penitentiary of winter

    We, the cocoon confined caballeros, were walking

    Basking in the middays sun

    Caressed by the scented breeze of the spring

    The delicate and elegant displays called flowers

    Jostled to invite us,

    Look at me first, please!

    We were all walking in the same path

    But within our microcosm,

    Happily confined inside our own bubble

    By the language we spoke

    By the color of our skin and hair

    By the dress we were wearing

    By the company we kept

    Without noticing others

    Or being noticed

    Or interacting

    We took photos

    Admired the flowers

    And wondered at the ever spanning blue sky

    We elbowed our ways

    To take a break inside Starbucks

    Where we were all happy and glee

    With the chai latte touching our lips

    With our eyes glued to our smart phones

    We all set down quietly

    Communicating with others

    With the touch of our fingers.

    April 12, 2015

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    CAIRO with Love

    Shobha Dash

    This is about our pet dog that we had named CAIRO. The Golden Retriever male puppy was only one month old when my husband brought it home for me. It was bit difficult for Tapan (my

    husband) to select the weaker, smaller and sick puppy in comparison to a healthy Black Labrador

    one only because I had insisted to have a golden retriever. That is how Cairo was brought to our

    Tata Sponge colony bungalow in March 2005.

    With the kids having grown up and moving out of the remote place like Joda for pursuing higher

    education, I would dread coming to an empty home after work. I used to miss my childrens

    company.the sharing of days stories, the togetherness, everything. One fine day I decided to

    have one puppy, preferably a golden retriever, to give us company and I mentioned this to Tapan

    that I wanted to get a puppy. .."A nice, playful dog to keep us company. Tapan told me that he

    would check with his friends and look in the internets classified section to see if anyone had a

    dog that would suit the two of us.

    After a couple of weeks, when he was at Bhubaneswar on some work, he spotted a very small

    advertisement in the Indian Express that said "Male Golden Retriever & Labrador mix, Free To

    Good Home". He phoned me and told that he was going to call and inquire about the dog. I said

    that if he liked it, he could pick it up and bring it home.

    Tapan later told me that when the owner of puppy took him to see it, the puppy was lying inside

    a box. The moment he saw it, he just fell in love with the puppy. The sleepy chocolate brown

    eyes looked to him sad and as if imploring to take him home. His fur was white and tan and

    extremely soft to touch. Tapan carried him on his lap all the way to Joda by car.

    The name Cairo was given to our puppy without any reason. May be during those days I had

    seen the movie The Mummy Returns which perhaps inspired me to name the puppy as Cairo.

    Cairo was growing fast. His immunization schedule, de-worming schedule, vitamin and calcium

    supplement everything was meticulously planned and carried out with proper record keeping.

    Within couple of months Cairo became the favourite puppy of the colony.

    Because of Cairos growing size we could see him changing his favourite sleeping place in the

    house. Sometimes we had to search for him in and out of our house. Every time we would find

    the little fellow in a new place taking a nap. Before going to office, we would ensure that we

    keep the small backyard gate locked with Cairo having the entire garden and the shed for moving

    around. One afternoon after coming back from office, I realised that Cairo was neither in the

    house nor in the garden. I was apprehensive that someone had stolen away Cairo. Suddenly I

    remembered of the hole on the back side wall which used to open towards Mr. Mishras

    bungalow. Over the wall I looked towards the other side of the fence and I could see five big

    German shepherds moving in his garden. With missing few heart beats I thought that if the little

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    Cairo would have gone that side through the hole then the big dogs must have killed him

    mercilessly by now. As I was moving away, I saw something moving inside the bushes. Little

    Cairo was juggling to come out of the bushes to walk towards the German Shepherds totally

    unaware of the danger. With choked voice I called Cairo-come- come. I was afraid to call

    loudly as my voice might attract the dangerous beasts. After few calls Cairo looked back and

    could recognise the known voice. He responded fast and through the same hole he returned back

    to my arms.

    When Cairo became six months old, we decided to start giving him basic training. We both

    would take him outdoors for training. A choke chain, one belt, one ball and one dumbbell were

    purchased. Cairo used to run around not listening to any of our commands. Whenever I would be

    strict with him, Tapan would say that is enough. Todays training is over. After fifteen days we

    realised we had trained him nothing. Few days later Tapan met one person who agreed to give

    training. Every morning he would take Cairo for a walk to the nearby field close to Birikala

    village and train him to shake hand, Sit, Down and some more tricks. We also made him do

    homework practice of what he had learned with the trainer. I use to hide the ball and say Fetch.

    Cairo would find the ball in no time.

    One day I saw the trainer beating Cairo. I came out to find out what was wrong. It seemed that

    the trainer was not in good mood that day. However we decided not to carry on with the trainer

    and with the little knowledge we had acquired from books and other literature, we tried to teach

    Cairo few more commands but ultimately Cairo remained half trained. He could not graduate.

    As days passed, we realised Cairo was able to understand Oriya clearly. One thing he learnt very

    eagerly was where is the Jhitipiti( the oriya name for lizard). He would look around the wall

    and would find one and would jump to catch it. With deep concentration he would keep on

    looking at it.

    Gradually Cairo became the known face in the colony. He would take no time to jump on the

    guests coming home and start licking their faces. This used to terrify the children and my friends

    who would come home to meet us.

    My children were completely in love with Cairo. Their phone calls to us would have the first

    lines asking about Cairos achievements. Their visits home would turn the house into a mad

    place with Cairo being the center of attraction.

    It was the month of June with earth welcoming showers of first rain. It was morning routine for

    me to go out every morning for a brisk walk and spend some time in the garden. The moment I

    would open the door of the house, Cairo would jump to move out first. The same thing he did

    that day. While I was going through the flower beds, Cairo ran barking after something to the

    backside garden. I did not pay any notice as Cairo was a very hyperactive dog and required to

    exercise very vigorously in the mornings. He would keep running round and round the garden for

    quite some time every day. Running after birds, frogs, rats & lizards was his favourite sport. I

    went inside leaving the door open and got busy in getting ready for the office. Before leaving for

    the office, I called Cairo to feed him his breakfast as he loved me to sit around while he would

    have his meals. He came jumping but showed no interest in his breakfast. As I was running short

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    of time, I left his food in his tray and locked the door from outside, leaving him in the shed as I

    used to do every day.

    We found Cairo lying listlessly on the floor in the lunch hour. He had not touched his food and

    nor he got up bouncing the way he used to do to welcome us. I was bit concerned and told Tapan

    to call the vet. I observed that though I had carried him inside, he had again gone out to sit in the

    rain. Every time I would pull him in, he would somehow stagger to go out and sit in the rain

    looking at the sky. By the time vet came, Cairo had no energy to lift himself. The vet was of the

    opinion that Cairo had perhaps eaten up something poisonous in the garden which had created

    this situation. He was given injections and saline but by nine in the morning next day, Cairo

    breathed his last. Our youngest son Kunal was home on vacation those days. Tapan had tough

    time consoling both me and Kunal. However somehow Kunal dug a hole in the backside garden

    and we laid Cairo there. I planted a tulsi plant on his grave which till today is there.

    We never had any pets after Cairo as I understood that it was quite painful when your loving pet

    passes away. Cairo was very special to us and I used to think about the person who had given

    him to us. Cairo brought so much to our family; I don't know how they could've given him

    away. We wouldn't have given him up for anything.

    The Be aware of the Dog sign board is still hanging on the main gate. The food bowl is still

    there in the corner reminding us of our dear Cairo.

    To, Cairo with love. We will remember you forever.

    Joda, Keonjhar, Odisha

    http://www.babru.com/WaterLily14/slides/WaterrLily14 (144).html

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    .... , , , , , ..........

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    , ... ,

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    I am very thankful for the existence of OSA - Prof. Chitta Baral, recipient of OSAs Distinguished Odia Award for 2014

    Utkarsa: Dr. Baral, congratulations for receiving OSA's 'Distinguished Odia Award' for 2014.

    Prof. Chitta Baral: What was your initial reaction when you knew about this?

    Thank you. I was in Bhubaneswar when I received an email about this award from OSA Vice

    President Sikhanda Satapathy. I was and am honored to have received this award.

    Utkarsa: Did you expect to get the award this year?

    Prof. Chitta Baral: My outlook towards awards and professional fellowships is that they will

    happen when they will happen. One should not expect them or worry about them.

    Utkarsa: What does this award mean to you? Will it impact your urge/intention to serve the


    Prof. Chitta Baral: I would like to dedicate this award to my dear father who passed away in

    July 2013 and who has been my source of inspiration and my guide throughout my life. Working

    for the development of Odisha has become my lifes mission for some time.

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    Utkarsa: You were not present when your name was called for the award. Dr. Lalu Mansinha

    received on your behalf. Any comment?

    Prof. Chitta Baral: I was in Bhubaneswar for my fathers one year passing away ritual

    (barshikia). My siblings also went to Bhubaneswar (from USA) for that. A year earlier I left OSA

    convention in Chicago and flew to Delhi directly from Chicago after I found that my fathers

    situation was critical after a surgery. So it was not possible for me to come to USA to get this

    award at OSA convention. I am very thankful that Lalu babu agreed to receive the award on my


    Utkarsa: Could you please tell us briefly about your childhood? Your schooling and higher

    education in USA?

    Prof. Chitta Baral: One of my earliest memories of my childhood is being 3 year old and my

    mother and grandmother carrying me in their arms in the rice fields near our village Baladia

    Matha (halfway between Jajpur Keonjhar Road and Korei station) and teaching me math tables

    and other elementary things. When I was five year old I was admitted to Kendriya Vidayalaya

    (Central School) which had recently opened in Bhubaneswar and which fascinated my father as

    he saw the kids going to and coming from that school wearing white and navy blue uniform. I

    did my Class I to X at that school, Plus 2 Science from BJB College, B.Tech (hons) in Computer

    Science at IIT Kharagpur, and MS and Ph.D in Computer Science from the University of

    Maryland, College Park.

    Utkarsa: I was going through your University website and saw you have written numorous

    papers. How do you get time? Rather I should ask how do you manage your time among so

    many things like profession, community service, family, Odisha connection etc.?

    Prof. Chitta Baral: Besides my job at the university I devote a big chunk of the reminder of my

    time on what has become my lifes mission. I must thank my wife for providing the environment

    that allows this and supporting me full heartedly on this. I would also like to thank Dhirendra

    Kar, who has been helping me for the last ten years on all my efforts towards Odisha.

    Utkarsa: In FB page Odishalinks Odishagrowth, I saw you have shared a link about opening of

    a new hospital in Bhubaneswar with an investment of Rs.200cr. Last week I saw a news in

    Sambad, all the villagers of a remote village in Odisha have been suffering in high fever. There is

    no hospital closer to them, no doctor is visiting the village. Men cant go for earning. There is no

    food. The villagers wait for no one but miracle to happen or death. How would you like to react?

    Prof. Chitta Baral: As there are several different facts in the above 4 lines. I have many

    reactions to them. The common theme behind them is that a lot needs to done with respect to

    Odisha as it is behind the rest of the country in many many aspects, from the despair in the

    villages to educated people leaving Odisha (due to lack of suitable jobs) in hordes to other cities

    in India and the world. All of us who have concerns about Odisha need to do whatever we can.

    Utkarsa: People of Odisha think that Odias abroad do not think about them once they leave

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    Odisha. How much they are correct? Do you think Odias of North America in general have some

    role contributing towards the social, cultural and economic life of Odisha?

    Prof. Chitta Baral: There are many Odias abroad who think about Odisha a lot. I know a large

    number of Odias in North America who are passionate about Odisha and most of them have

    specific talents that they can and do bring in towards the development of social, cultural and

    economic life of Odisha.

    Utkarsa: You must have heard about Odia language getting classical status a year back? Do you

    think it is something beneficial for Odia literature or life of Odias? I want to add a point that

    Odisha has not yet produced a professional writer yet. What I mean is, not a single Odia has

    earned from selling literature to run his family, sending his children to school. How can we be

    happy about classical status?

    Prof. Chitta Baral: The classical status for Odia has energized many who are interested in

    greater usage of Odia, and preservation of Odia as a language. It may lead to specialized

    institutes and perhaps an Odia university (along the lines of similar universities on Telugu, Tamil,

    Malayalam, Hindi and Urdu) that will also help the cause.

    I think there are several Odia writers whose livelihood is intimately related to their writing. The

    names that immediately come to mind are Manoj Das and Gourahari Das. In general, teachers

    and professors in Odia language and literature and Odia journalists and Odia columnists who

    write regularly have their writing and livelihood intimately interwoven.

    Utkarsa: Tourism in Odisha is in its lowest form though Odisha has many tourist spots. You

    have been organizing Buddhism track in last few conventions. Now you are organizing Tourism

    track. What is your suggestion on improving tourism in Odisha?

    Prof. Chitta Baral: Steps need to be taken in all aspects of tourism such as improving tourist

    infrastructure, promoting Odisha sites around the world, commencing international flights, and

    having a tourism set-up that helps tourists and potential tourists. In regards to the latter I was

    impressed by the (old) Andhra Pradesh Tourism set up where they have operators standing by on

    phone and Internet to help tourists. In regards to promotion, Odias in North America and OSA

    can help in bringing a travelling exhibition of Odisha artifacts to top museums in North America.

    Utkarsa: Odia second generation in North America is a big force and in next 10/20/30 years it

    will be even bigger. Unfortunately we have not successful bringing them to the mainstream Odia

    life. What is your suggestion to connect them with Odisha so that they can contribute to Odishas

    economy and life?

    Prof. Chitta Baral: I think cultural ties are the best way to go. Getting the youngsters involved

    in Odishas dance forms, music, painting and other arts would help them remain connected with

    Odisha. This approach has been successful with respect to many youngsters learning Odissi. This

    can be further expanded. In this regards helping in the establishment of at least one Odissi school

    in each major metropolitan area in North America will be helpful. In addition establishment of

    some centers of Odisha studies in North American universities will also help.

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    Utkarsa: What is your idea about OSA as an organization? How can we bring many non-

    members to OSA?

    Prof. Chitta Baral: I am very thankful for the existence of OSA. Among other things, it

    provides a forum to interact and work together with other like-minded people on issues related to

    Odisha and Odia.

    One idea that can help in bringing more non-members to OSA is to hold more Odisha related

    competitions (in topics where individuals can participate) as part of the OSA conventions. When

    non-members participate in these competitions, they will get motivated to become members of


    Utkarsa: This is a personal question. You

    may choose not to answer. But I am sure,

    reader would love to know about this.

    Where did you meet Mutsumi? From

    which country is she? Has she ever visited

    Odisha? How is her relationship with your

    family and yours with her?

    Prof. Chitta Baral: I first talked to her in

    the campus of University of Texas at El

    Paso. She has visited Odisha many times

    and she is an integral part of our extended

    family, as the elder bahu of the family. I

    have been to Japan a few times and we will

    be going to her native place in coming June

    to see the house her late grandfather build

    and where her father grew up.

    Utkarsa: We have many established Odias

    here in North America. Sometimes our

    children look for mentorship, however we

    do not have any such provision in the

    community. How can we leverage OSA to

    develop a mentorship program in various fields?

    Prof. Chitta Baral: This is a great idea. I think OSA can serve as a good avenue to develop

    mentorship relationship between the children and others beyond their immediate family.

    Utkarsa: Dr. Baral, it is nice talking to you. You are a selfless volunteer. Most deserving for the

    award. I am sure you will be always there with the community. Any final word to our young

    community volunteers?

    Prof. Chitta Baral: Thank you. In regards to final words, I would like to reproduce the

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    acceptance speech that I sent Lalu babu in June 2014 to read out when receiving the award on

    my behalf. To that I would like to add that a peer review of IIT Bhubaneswar mentions the two

    big gifts they received from Dr. Sitakantha Das.

    I am deeply touched and honored by this award. I am sorry that I cannot be here in person, as I

    had to come to India. I would like to thank Sikhanda, the awards committee and OSA for the kind

    words they have said. Most of the accomplishments they mentioned would not have been possible

    without the help and inspiration of many OSA members and sister organizations such as SEEDS.

    Looking towards the future I would like to suggest a few directions where we can all work

    together for Odishas future and make some long lasting impact.

    ONE. With several world class institutions now existing in Odisha, such as NISER, IIT, NIT,

    Xavier University, AIIMS and Central University of Odisha at Koraput, it has become easier to

    contribute, help and set-up specialized named centers as part of these institutions. In that

    regards Dr. Sitakantha Das has signed an MOU for a Chair Professor position in the specific

    areas of Bio-Molecular and Food Technology in the school of Basic Sciences at IIT

    Bhubaneswar. It is expected that this will lead to the establishment of a new center at IIT

    Bhubaneswar. I hope others will follow that example and help Odisha as well as establish a

    legacy that may last hundreds of years.

    TWO. Now that Odia has been accorded the status of a classical language, and Odissi was

    earlier accorded the status of a classical dance, and efforts are on to make Odissi a classical

    music, I think it is time we come together and figure out a way to establish 1-2 centers of Odisha

    studies in a couple of top universities outside India; especially at least one in USA. For example,

    such a center with respect to Bangla exists in Berkeley and for Tamil in Cologne, Germany. Such

    a center on Odisha would promote the culture and heritage of Odisha in a big way. To establish

    such a center, there is need for funds as well as collaboration with current researchers of South

    Asian studies.

    THREE. Finally I would urge the OSA community to help in the development of Odisha in the

    knowledge domain. I believe that that is where we can have the most long lasting and far

    reaching contributions. A specific example, explaining what I mean by knowledge domain, is

    that currently Odisha has one world heritage site in Konark and three other sites in the

    preliminary list (Chilika, Bhitarakanika and Ekamra Kshetra). In contrast the Kathmandu valley,

    which I visited recently, has SEVEN world heritage sites. Getting UNESCO world heritage

    designation requires a lot of documentation and research. I urge OSA members to help in this

    documentation and research effort to get world heritage site designation for the three in the

    preliminary list as well as other deserving sites such as Ratnagiri-Lalitagiri-Udaygiri,

    Raghurajpur and Srikhetra, Puri.

    Thank you again for inspiring me and for having kind thoughts about me. I look forward to

    working with all of you in many more Odisha development projects in the future, especially the

    three specific examples that I mentioned.

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    Interview with Isha Mohapatra - winner of the 2014 Samik Singh Kalinga

    Youth Entrepreneurship Competition (SSKYEC)

    (Isha receiving $1,000 check from Tapan Padhi (president of OSA) and Ranjan Dash)

    (Isha Mohapatra is the winner of 2014 SSKYEC. Isha lives in Easton, PA and goes to Moravian

    Academy Middle School, Bethlehem, PA. She likes to paint, sing, dance and play lacrosse. Isha is the

    daughter of Dr. Satish Mohapatra and Mrs. Simantini Das, both of whom are life members of OSA)

    Describe your company and what it plans to do?

    Isha: My company makes and sells bricks that are more insulating than normal bricks to reduce

    the use of heat energy and heating cost in the common American household. To make my bricks

    more insulating I have to lower their thermal conductivity, which is the ability of an object to

    conduct heat, by making them more porous. I made my bricks porous by adding a paper pulp to

    the mix before moulding and firing them. I will make the bricks in Odisha because all of my raw

    materials are abundantly available there and the labor is much cheaper than here. From there, I

    will ship to North America and Europe. I plan to build a $10 million business in 5 years after

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    What motivated you to start your company?

    Isha: I already had participated in two science competitions and won prizes there. This

    motivated me to turn my science project into a business plan. I have also gone to

    many Entrepreneurship Workshops organized by OSA and the local NY/NJ Chapter. In the

    workshop, I liked working together in groups to come up with ideas for mock business plans with


    How will you use your prize money?

    Isha: I have already saved the money in my bank account for future use.

    Please share your experience in participating the 2014 SSKYEC. Will you

    encourage fellow odiya friends to participate in the competition?

    Isha: I had a great experience participating in the competition. It provides a good exposure to

    the participants to the world of entrepreneurship. Its hard work, but it pays off in the end. The

    competition makes you feel proud of your project and it is also interesting to see the other ideas

    people come up with. The greatest prize in the Competition is the high amount of prize money! I

    think that if more people participate in the Competition, it will be more competitive and it can

    become a big event in the OSA Conventions to come. I would encourage many people to

    participate in this Competition.

    We encourage the youths of odiya community to participate in the 2015 SSKYEC.

    Visit http://www.orissasociety.us/keaward for details.


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    Vaibhav Mohanty A Western classical music composer

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    Vaibhav Mohanty is a composer of Western contemporary classical music who resides in Charleston, South Carolina. He is making a name for himself in the music world by composing

    music for concert band, chamber ensemble, and jazz band. By age twelve Vaibhav was already

    conducting performances of his own music by large and small ensembles, and by age fifteen he

    had already established himself as a published music composer. His music compositions are

    being performed at schools, universities, as well as at professional settings throughout the U.S. A

    high school senior at age sixteen, Vaibhav plans to attend Harvard University in the fall of 2015

    with a focus on music.

    Childhood: Vaibhav was born in Durham, North Carolina, but soon he and his parents moved to

    South Carolina, where he has grown up. In Charleston, he started learning piano at age four. He

    composed his first piece of music for piano at the age of nine in memory of a late music teacher

    from his elementary school. When he joined middle school at age nine, Vaibhav started playing

    alto saxophone in the school band. Two years of experience of playing in band brought a change

    in his music composition. Vaibhav started composing music for large ensembles (particularly

    concert band) in eighth grade. In his nationally acclaimed high school, there is no band or

    orchestra program, so he formed two music ensembles, one outside the school and one in the

    school that kept his musical interests alive. In addition, he took guitar and music theory class in

    school while continuing his piano and saxophone studies. He started teaching himself other

    musical instruments as well, such as trombone. In his senior year, he has joined his high schools

    drum group. During the summer, he attends a summer music program run by the Charleston

    County School District (CCSD) Students Mastering the Academic ARTs (SMAART) program.

    Initially a student, Vaibhav later became an intern, and in the upcoming summer he will be a full

    time music teacher at the SMAART Program.

    Music compositions and Recognitions: Vaibhavs first submission of a music composition for

    piano, Floodgate of Happiness, to the National Parent Teacher Association (PTA) Reflections

    contest in seventh grade earned him first place at the state level and a national honorable

    mention. The following year, Vaibhav composed his first piece for a concert band at age eleven.

    The nationally recognized symphonic band of the local Wando High School recorded his

    Fanfare of Unity, which won Vaibhav his first National Award of Excellence from the PTA

    Reflections Contest. In the spring of same year, Charlestons West Ashley High School Band

    performed Fanfare of Unity, and Vaibhav appeared in concert as guest conductor to conduct

    his piece. Since then he has been participating in PTA Reflections Contest and in six years of

    participation he has won six state awards and at least three national awards so far (with the final

    years results to be released in May).

    In high school Vaibhav started composing music for chamber ensemble and jazz band. Recent

    years have seen Vaibhavs music compositions winning major national and international awards.

    In the 2012 Music Teachers National Association (MTNA) music composition contest, he won

    first place in the state and the southern division and became a national finalist. In 2014, at fifteen,

    he won the Grand Prize in the Sul Ross State University (SRSU) 3rd

    Annual International Wind

    Ensemble Composition Competition, which was a contest for musicians of all ages. Vaibhav also

    became a winner of the National Association for Music Educators (NAfME) student composition

    contest. In the same year, Vaibhav was declared a winner in the National YoungArts Foundation

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    competition and was one of the 170 winners from among over 11,000 applicants of various fields

    of art in the country.

    Performances of Vaibhavs compositions: Vaibhavs music has been performed at various

    venues around the country. Every summer since 2011 Vaibhav has been composing a piece (for

    chamber ensemble) for the CCSD SMAART program, where high school and middle school

    students who attend the program perform his composition. In 2013, the Charleston Catholic

    School requested Vaibhav to write a piece for the schools band, which premiered Vaibhavs

    concert band composition Skywalk. That month, Altitude, also written for concert band, was

    premiered by Piedmont Wind Symphony (composed of about 50 adult musicians) in Winston-

    Salem, North Carolina. Altitude, after being selected as a winner in the NAfME composition

    contest, was performed by the NAfME All-National Honor Band, which was comprised of more

    than 150 of the nations top high school musicians. The performance was at the world famous

    Grand Ole Opry House in Nashville, Tennessee. Exuberant Overture, the composition for

    concert band that won the international SRSU composition was premiered by the SRSU Wind

    Ensemble as a winning composition in 2014 and has since been performed by the SRSU Wind

    Ensemble for the universitys Presidential Investiture ceremony. Vaibhavs first jazz

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    composition, called Verve Street, was written for and premiered by the Charleston Jazz

    Orchestra (CJO), Charlestons professional jazz band in October of 2014. Scherzo, written for

    mixed woodwind choir, was performed in 2015 at the New World Center in Miami, Florida by

    members of the New World Symphony as well as other Miami musicians as part of the National

    YoungArts Week Classical Music Concert. More recently, schools and colleges across the nation

    have started performing Vaibhavs compositions.

    Music publications: Some of Vaibhavs music compositions for chamber ensembles, namely

    Humoresque, Train Ride, and Scherzo, have been published by JPM Music Publications in

    Festus, Missouri. Altitude, the composition for concert band, is due soon for publication by

    Lighthouse Music Publications in Ontario, Canada. Vaibhav is currently editing and preparing

    other compositions to be published as well.

    Music arrangements and performance: Vaibhav arranges Indian and Western songs for

    various types of ensembles. Cut Time Ensemble, which he and his friends have formed, performs

    Indian music as well as non-Indian music at various venues in Charleston including at festivals

    and programs held by the Indian Association of Greater Charleston (IAGC). As a classical

    pianist, Vaibhav has won multiple city-level competitions, and has performed at several honors

    recitals; he has competed at the state level. Vaibhav also plays alto, soprano, and baritone

    saxophone, trombone, guitar, and percussion in addition to piano.

    Utkarsa contacted Vaibhav:

    What are you composing to present at the 46th OSA Convention in Washington DC?

    Vaibhav: I am currently working on a piece that fuses the stylistic elements of Odissi and jazz

    music. I am utilizing exclusively western instrumentation while the central motifs and thematic

    development of the piece are fundamentally based in Odissi. My goal is to try to bring together

    two genres of music that seemingly do not mix to try to bridge the gap between Eastern classical

    and Western non-classical music through commonalities in, for example, the emphasis placed on

    improvisation. In doing so, I would like the piece to be accessible to a wide audience, including

    both Odissi and jazz enthusiasts and all who fall in between. The piece is still in its initial stages

    of development, but I envision that most of the melodic content of the piece will tend towards

    Odissi in style, but the harmonic background will be strongly influenced by jazz. The piece will

    also feature significant improvisation, which will give the performers the liberty to influence the

    general sound as well. Overall, in writing this piece I am trying to strike a balance between

    two genres to create a cohesive fusion.

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    Some links to Vaibhavs compositions, arrangements, website, and articles/interviews:

    1. Scherzo (uploaded by National Youngarts Foundation):


    2. Altitude (audio; uploaded by MUSC Humanitas magazine):


    3. Exuberant Overture (uploaded by SRSU):


    4. Indian raga Madhmad sarang (with Dr. Mayuresh Abhyankar; uploaded by Vaibhav):


    5. Disney medley (arranged by Vaibhav and Seong Hwan Lee; uploaded by National

    Youngarts Foundation):


    6. An interview of Vaibhav on the opening of Charlestons famous Gaillard Center:


    7. Vaibhavs music website:


    (Every child in our community is gifted. They are our future. If you would like to share

    about your gifted child or any child in the community who would be an inspiration,

    please share. Utkarsa is the best platform for this.)

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5qym4jePb0ghttp://academicdepartments.musc.edu/humanities/humanitas/audio/BE141a_Altitude.mp3https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l1ZeEnBxJ78https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TazMg2Rx94Ehttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L3SMCUUGkw0http://www.yourgaillard.com/vaibhav-mohanty/http://www.vmohantymusic.com/http://www.babru.com/Azalea13/slides/azalea13 (59).JPG

  • , Contents Page 70


    SIDDHARTHA MISRA Odia boy who pursues Opera as career

    Indian-American tenor SIDDHARTHA MISRA has quickly established himself as a versatile performer in

    the tenor repertoire. His performance credits range from a house debut at the Opera Company of

    Philadelphia as Paris (Romo et Juliette) to Don Basilio (Le nozze di Figaro) and Spoletta (Tosca) with

    OperaDelaware and premieres with Center City Opera Theater in the title roles of Daniel Catans Il

    postino and Gregory Spears Pauls Case, which the Philadelphia Inquirer praised as one of the citys

    Top Ten Classical Music Performances of the year.

    Highlights of his young artist career include the Brahms Liebeslieder Wlzer, Op. 52 with the Mark

    Morris Dance Group at the Tanglewood Music Center; and excerpts as Rinuccio (Gianni Schicchi) in the

    Sarasota Opera Apprentice Program. His portrayal of Cacambo (Candide) with Light Opera Works was

    lauded by the Chicago Sun-Times as heartfelt with brilliant comic timing and his performance as

    Guiscardo (Pasatieris Padrevia) with Opera Alterna was praised for a purely honeyed sound and

    layered performance. Other summer festival credits include the Caramoor Festival, Opera North, Lake

    George Opera and the International Institute of Vocal Arts in Chiari, Italy.

    In concert, Siddhartha has performed Tobias Ragg (Sweeney Todd) and as a soloist in

    Mozarts Requiem and Coronation Mass, Handels Messiah and Beethovens Choral Fantasy. He has

    appeared as a soloist with the Keweenaw Symphony Orchestra and the Northwestern University Chorale

  • , Contents Page 71

    and has also appeared with the Philadelphia Singers, Choral Arts Society of Philadelphia and the

    Mendelssohn Club.

    Siddhartha holds a masters degree from Temple University, where he performed Le pecheur (Le

    Rossignol), Le petit vielliard (LEnfant et les sortileges) and Spalanzani (Les contes dHoffman) and

    holds undergraduate degrees from Northwestern University, where he performed Tamino (Die

    Zauberflte) and Rinuccio (Gianni Schicchi). Other roles include Alfredo (La traviata), Nemorino

    (LElisir damore), Ernesto (Don Pasquale), Don Ottavio (Don Giovanni), and Belmonte (Die

    Entfhrung aus dem Serail).

    A native of Cambridge, Massachusetts, Siddhartha studied at the Longy School of Music and was an

    accomplished violinist prior to pursuing a career in opera.

    Delco tenor leads a double life with Opera Philadelphia reports Delco Times

    When Sid Misra first learned of the line-up for Opera Philadelphias current season, he was

    especially excited about Don Carlo, the epic grand opera by Guiseppe Verdi.

    Its one of my favorite operas, says Misra, a member of the Opera Philadelphia chorus. Some

    of the arias are complete show stoppers: a synthesis of drama and music.

    Don Carlo continues Wednesday and Friday evenings and Sunday matinee.

    Although the arias are sung by soloists, members of the chorus have a significant role.

    This is one of the largest chorus weve used, says Misra, who is in his seventh season with Opera Philadelphia. Typically, an opera has a 32 member chorus, but in Don Carlo, there are 68 singers. Although were a large group, we have to function as one cohensive unit, Misra said. And

    there are some moments when the orchestra is creating an especially big sound, so we have to

    project our voices to the fullest. But we still have to blend in as part of the group.

    Its not only the actual singing thats a challenge with a large group. Even the entrances can be


    For instance, the stage for Don Carlo is set up with a ramp so that there are two levels. In one

    scene, the 68 chorus members have to enter quickly in 12 seconds but they are entering on

    two different levels. And theyre carrying swords and axes.

    So there are almost 70 people running onto the stage carrying a bunch of swords, said Misra.

    And we have to do this safely and quickly, so it requires a high level of discipline.

    To prepare for an opera, the chorus spends three and a half weeks in rehearsals. The three-hour

    rehearsals are held in the rehearsal hall of the Academy of Music. At first, the rehearsals are held

    once a week, but as the opening date approaches, they rehearse four or five nights each week.

    This leads up to dress rehearsals before opening night.

  • , Contents Page 72

    His future wife Valerie Haber was already in the chorus.

    She enjoyed it and so I auditioned, he said. The audition was successful and hes been a

    member ever since. Its great! Misra said about sharing this activity together. They lead

    separate working lives during the day.

    So its on the rides home from rehearsals that we really get to catch up, he said.

    His own life has taken a new direction ever since January when he became a member of the

    administrative staff of Opera Philadelphia.

    Misras official position is Subscriber and Member Services Coordinator, a full-time position in

    the ticket office, where he takes phone calls from subscribers and donors and helps with

    whatever issues they have.

    For instance, if theyre calling to renew a subscription, they may want to change their seats for

    the new season. Other callers may want to exchange tickets for another performance, but the

    same seats may not be available, so Misra tries to meet their requests for the new seats.

    Most times, they have no idea they are talking to a member of the chorus.

    I dont announce up front that Im a singer, said Misra. But when the conversation veers

    towards questions about a particular production, then I can give first-hand responses.

    He can be especially helpful when callers have questions about new operas.

    Thats when I try to give some insight into what to expect, he said. So hopefully, by having

    me in this role, the callers get a more informed opinion.

    Misras double life with the company is unique. He is the only singer who is also a member of

    the administrative staff.

    Ive been interested for a while in working on the administrative side, Misra said.

    Before this, he was a freelance performer with varied out of town companies and productions.

    But this lifestyle involves lots of travel. You can be on the road for 35 weeks and I realized I

    wouldnt be happy with that, said Misra.

    His transition from freelance singer to full time staff person went smoothly.

    I was brand new to this side of the table, but the staff was very encouraging, said Misra.

    Despite his busy double life with Opera Philadelphia, this committed singer still makes time for

    other musical activities. He has sung with the Philadelphia Singers, the Choral Arts Society, and

    with the choir at the First Baptist Church.

    Moreover, he and his wife, a Delco native, have produced several operas for the Poor Richards

    Opera company. Theyve been performed at the Wallingford Presbyterian Church.

    We wanted to bring opera performances to Delaware County, he said. Right now, the Delco

    tenor is focused on singing in Don Carlo, one of his favorite operas.

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    Sid Misra works the business and singing side for Opera Philadelphia. Photo courtesy of Opera Philadelphia

    Verdi is a master of being able to take the mood of the moment and encapsulate it in a sound,

    said Misra. You dont get that in any other art form, and thats what makes opera compelling.

    He is now committed to this art form both onstage and off.

    I feel Ive made a strong commitment to further this art form, both as a singer and an

    administrator, Misra said. Hopefully this dual life gives me the chance to find solutions that

    serve both sides.

  • , Contents Page 74

    Utkarsa Special:


    Nabakalebar- as the word denotes, is the periodic renewal of the of the wooden idols of

    the four principal images (Chaturda murti) Lord Jagannath, Lodr Balabhadra , Goddess Subhadra and

    Lord Sudarshan.

    Nabakalebara means the new embodiment. This ceremony resembles the phenomenon of life and

    death on earth, as has been described by Lord Krishna to Arjuna in Bhagabat Gita.Anybody taking a birth

    on this Martya loka(Earth) has to leave the same one day on the other which is enevitable. Nabakalebar

    occurs when the hindu lunar calendar has two Asadhas; joda asadha, aslo called purusottam masa. This

    falls in the interval of 19 years or sometimes 8 years or 12 years. During the last century Nabakalebar

    has taken place in the years 1912, 1931, 1950, 1969, 1977 and 1996.

    There are two types of Nabakalebar

    1. Change of idol along with Brahma

    2. Angaphita : Neither Idols are changed nor the Bramha is replaced . Only the body of idols are


    The very first event of Navakalebar is the search of specific Darus( Neem wood) for the Chaturda murti.

    The countdown to the Naba Kalebara starts with the formation of the search party that would go out to

    locate the Holy Tree. The following is the lists of Darus collected from the following areas in the

    following years .

    Year Jagannath Balabhadra Subhadra Sudarshan

    1912, 16th July Prataprudrapur Niali Polar Mahal Fatehgarh

    1931, 17th July Gabapada Satwikpur Niali Kakatpur

    1950,16th July Khadihara Nauapatna Durgeswar Jalarpur

    1969, 16th July Champajhar Bhakar street Kahnupur Balara village

    1977,18th July Raychakradharpur Bhogeswar Baraboi Niali

    1996,17th July Dadhimachhagadia Ramakrishnapur Maladavillage Bisoidih

  • , Contents Page 75

    The search party consists of:

    1 member of the Pati Mahapatra family

    20 Dayitapatis

    1 Lenka

    9 Maharanas

    16 Brahmanas

    3 Deulakaranas

    30 police officers

    2 inspectors of police

    The characteristics which are to be followed for the selection of the Darus are

    For Lord Sudarshan :

    The bark should be reddish in color.

    The tree should have three branches

    There should be a sign of Chakra(wheel) with a small depression in the middle.

    For Lord Balabhadra:

    The bark of the neem tree should be light brown or white in color.

    The tree should have seven branches

    The tree should have sign of plough and pestle etc.

    Nearby there should be heritage and graveyard

    The upper branches and twigs of the tree should form a canopy looking like a hood of a


  • , Contents Page 76

    For Devi Subhadra:

    The bark of the tree should be yellowish.

    It should have five branches.

    Mark of a lotus flower with five petals.

    For Lord Jagannath:

    The color of the tree should be dark.

    The tree must have four main branches.

    The tree should be near a river or a pond or on a crossing of three ways or else be

    surrounded by three mountains.

    There should be a cremation ground near the tree.

    There should be some hermitage not too far off the tree.

    There should be Shiva temple in the neighborhood of the tree.

    The tree should be free from the parasites plants and creepers.

    There should not be any nests of birds on the tree.

    The tree must not have been struck by lightning nor partially broken before by storm etc.

    There should be ant hill near the tree and snake holes at the roots of the tree.

    Signs of sankha and chakra must be present on the tree.

    The tree should be surrounded properly with the trees of varuna,sahada and bilva.

    The tree should be away from human settlement but should not stand in a swamp

    surrounded by marsh or mud.

    The specific event for searching the Darus also termed as Banayaga Yatra commences on the 10th day of

    bright fortnight of the month of Chaitra i.e the day following Shri Ram Navami. On this day after the

    mid-day worship (madhyahna dhupa) Pati mahapatra , the priest, takes out three Ajnamala or the

    garlands of orders, which are pieces of te read strings tied with nirmalya in the middle. He distribute

    these garlands to the head of the respective Daitas of the respective images and retains the Ajnamala of

  • , Contents Page 77

    Sri Sudarsan with himself. Then Bitarachha Mahapatra ties sarees of 12 hastas in length on the head

    of the Daitas and that of Pati Mohapatra is a longer one.This function is done near Kalahat door insider

    the temple. Then Patajoshi Mahapatra ties new clothes on the heads of Lenka Sevayat and four

    Biswakarma Sevayat(Carepnter). This function starts near Jaya Bijaya door. The traditional trumpet and

    drums are played. The procession including Daitas, priests , Viswakarma, Lenkas,Karanas, Pati

    Mohapatra etc starts and goes through sata pahacha via Anand Bazar and comes to lions gate. From

    there they proceed towards the kings palace. After meeting the King & his Rajguru, the procession goes

    to Jagannath Ballav Math where the party rests. The next day the journey starts to Kakatpur Mangala for

    her blessings and guidance. The total group offer prayers for the success of the mission.

    The goddess Mangala directs the Daitas, in dream to the places from where the Darus are to be


    After the Darus are located , the ritual bath of the tree is completed by sprinkling it with sacrificial water

    . It is applied with sandal paste and vermillion. Flowers are offered and new cloth is wrapped around the

    tree. After this, Pati Mohapatra places the Ajnamala of the deity on the respective trees. Yajna is

    performed in the sacrificial pavilion erected on the western side of the tree. Then follows Ankurropana.

    Some varieties of seeds are sown for germination. After the seeds germinate, homas are made reciting

    vedic mantras continuously for two days. Then the axes are worshipped. Pati Mohapatra strike the tree

    with golden axe, then Viswavasu or Daitapati with silver axe and at last the Viswakarmas with iron axe

    cuts down the tree. After being cut, the tree must fall only in the northern, eastern or north-eastern

    direction. A log of about 2.5 meters in length is cut out from the tree trunk and rest of the tree is buried

    underground at that very spot. The Daru is disbarred and given a quadrangular shape. It is then wrapped

    up in a silken clothes. During this period the party do not take either food or water. No one is allowed to

    see the cutting of the Darus as per the Sastras. Then the Darus are transported to Puri by a specially

    constructed cart made up from the wood of kendu tree. The wheel of the cart are made of vata tree and

    axle made from tamarind tree. The localities of the places through whiles the cart passes pulls the cart

    and then Daru reach Puri. After as stoppage at Nrusimha Temple of Gundicha house, the Darus are

    brought to Koili Baikuntha trhough the northern gate of the Shrimandira.

    On the full moon day o fthe Jyestha month i.e on snana purnima, the Darus along with the old images

    are brought to Snana Mandapa for the usual bathing ceremony. After this the old images are taken to

    Anabasar room. Usually Anabasar is for 15 days. But during Nabakalebar it is for 45 days and termed as

    Maha Anabasar. The Darus are taken to Nirmana Mandap where the images are carved by Viswakarmas.

    The temple is closed for publ