Odisha Research Center marks new era of data-driven insights into state’s glorious past

Bhubaneswar: On Constitution Day, Odisha Governor Raghubar Das and Chhattisgarh Governor Bishwabhushan Harichandan jointly unveiled the Odisha Research Center (ORC).

Union Education, Skill Development, and Entrepreneurship Minister Dharmendra Pradhan, delivering a talk titled ‘Knowledge and Tradition of Odisha,’ emphasized the commitment to multidisciplinary education across prestigious institutions like IITs and IIMs under Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s National Educational Policy.

Pradhan highlighted the significance of understanding the scientific underpinnings and fundamental principles behind the intricate stone carvings adorning Odisha’s angular temples to appreciate the state’s prosperous and visionary society. He emphasized the role of the Odisha Research Center in delving into these perspectives and principles.

Reflecting on Odisha’s rich heritage, Pradhan noted its prosperity before the Kalinga War, characterized by a port-based economy. The Konark temple’s artwork, depicting maritime scenes with giraffe motifs, offered evidence of Kalinga’s historical maritime connections with Southeast Asia and Africa. Historical references also hinted at Odisha’s past role in exporting elephants. The excavations in Odangagarh, Tirtol area, revealed a 3,000-year-old civilization in Jagatsinghpur district.

Pradhan underscored the cultural aspects of Odisha, citing Balaram Das’s Laxmi Purana as a testament to women empowerment and cleanliness in earlier centuries. He highlighted the global impact of the Mahima cult and the teachings of Santhakabi Bhima Bhoi.

Addressing the gap in historical documentation, Pradhan expressed concern that Odisha’s rich history had often been confined to folklore due to insufficient research and evidence. He envisioned that the newly inaugurated Odisha Research Center would rectify this by unveiling the authentic truths of Odia society through comprehensive data analysis.