Odisha Festival 2023, organized by Utkala, the cultural wing of Sri Jagannath Seva Samiti, was inaugurated by Hon’ble Governor of West Bengal Sri C V Anand Bose on 21St June at the Northern Park of Bhawanipore in Kolkata. The inauguration ceremony was also graced by Mr. Ashim Kumar Bose, Hon’ble Councilor of KMC’s Ward No 70, Mr Chandra Sekhar Panigrahi, President, Jagannath Seva Samiti, Khidirpur, Mr Kashinath Behera, President of Utkala and other dignitaries.
A number of performances are taking place and visitors will also have a glimpse of Odisha handicrafts that are on display on the occasion.” Utkala Samman conferred every year since 2003 on personalities with outstanding contributions to Art and Culture. This year renowned Singer Mr Debashis Mohapatra, prominent Odia singer was honoured with Utkal Sanman. He also performed along with other well-known artists. The book “Jagannath in Bengal Eyes” Utkala Souvenir & Album JHUMAR was unveiled and the project Chhauni from Mayurbhanj performed Chhou Dance and Sri Subhash Patra & Troupe from Rairangpur performed Jhumur songs.
On this occasion, Mr. C.S Panigrahi, President, Sree Jagannath Seva Samiti said, “At Kidderpore Jagannath Mandir, we join in the celebration of Rath Yatra just like it is celebrated everywhere else. Concurrently, we also organized a week-long festival known as Odisha Festival. Our objective is to introduce the people of Bengal to the vibrant culture, arts, and music of Odisha. Additionally, we endeavor to incorporate elements of Odisha’s artifacts and cuisine to some extent, while promoting the Jagannath culture among our temple visitors and encouraging them to spread this culture to others. The Odisha Festival has been an ongoing tradition for the past two decades. This year, we are proud to commemorate the 75th Rath Yatra at Kidderpore Jagannath Temple in Kolkata. Our message to all is to embrace and follow the Jagannath culture.”
On 22nd evening, Honorable Mayor of Kolkata, Mr. Firhad Hakim will grace the festival as Chief Guest. On 22nd the audience will enjoy the Baul dance sponsored by the Govt of West Bengal.
These 7 days long festival will witness the classical dance programme by Navajiban natya Sastra, sponsored by Govt of Odisha, dance programme by Smt. Meera Das & Troupe along with Bhajan Sandhya programme by Artists of Odias at Kolkata, Indian classical Dance, interschool competition, Bhajan Sandhya by eminent Bhajan Singer / Bollywood singer Sadhana Sargam and her Team, performance by the Temple team and Gousiya Nritya by Prof Mahua Mukherjee will adorn the Odisha Festival.
A traditional Khiri-Pitha competition will be held on 25th June 2023.
The Closing ceremony on 27th June, 2023 will be started by the introduction of prize winners followed by dance performances by the prize winners. The festivities will end with the Bahuda Yatra (Return Rath) at 10.00am on 28th June 2023.