Pune: When did you last hear about Odias celebrating ‘Raja’ outside Odisha or to that matter even within Odisha ? If you don’t happen to watch Odia TV Channels during Raja festival, chances are that you thought ‘Celebrating Raja’ is a ‘thing of past’ and doesn’t exist any more.
‘Raja’ is one of the oldest and unique identity of Odia culture and tradition. It’s not just a celebration of womanhood, but also a symbol of agriculture and merriment. Unfortunately, as the days pass, our old traditions keeps changing. These days, rarely do we get a chance to listen to Raja Folk song, neither do we get to see young women having fun in swings.As if our old culture is fading away in the glitz of city life. Because of this, the festival has started losing its identity and thus the young generation finds it difficult to connect to this tradition.
As an answer to this social issue, Pune-based Non-Profit Odia organization ‘Kalinga Swaraj’ has conceptualized ‘Raja Mahostav-2019’; a grand cultural festival to be held on 15th June at Shree Shivchhatrapati Sports Complex Stadium, Balewadi, Pune. The event starts at 1.00 PM.
Kalinga Swaraj Founder-President Sibasis says, “This is an initiative and humble attempt by ‘Kalinga Swaraj Foundation’ to make Non-resident Odias experience Odisha’s very own festival ‘Raja’ and to create awareness about the festival among the young generation. This year’s theme is ‘Celebrating Womanhood’.
Kalinga Swaraj Cultural Head Dipak Nayak says, ‘’We started this event last year (2018) as a small experiment to unite Odias in Pune. This year, ‘Raja Mahostav’ will be an extravaganza as there are several attractions: ‘Raja Queen-2019 Contest’, Cultural performances like Dance, Music, Stand-up comedy by professional artists as well as local Odia artists, Odia food stalls…to name a few.
Among celebrities, Ollywood star Akash Das Nayak, Ollywood & Bollywood Actress Prakruti Mishra, Ollywood’s celebrated Singer Aseema Panda, renowned Music Composer Abhijit Majumdar, Comedian Braja Singh, Odia Theatre Veteran Daitari Panda and Anchor RJ Swati are going to join this festival.Apart from the celebrities, we also consider ‘Raja Mahostav’ as a great opportunity for local artists to showcase their talent. As Icing on the cake, we are also fortunate to have many renowned brands who are joining us as partners/sponsors.”
Award-winning film production company BnR Films is associated with the festival as ‘Visual Partner’. Regarding the event, renowned filmmaker Biswanath Rath (CEO, BnR Films) says, ‘’We strongly believe ‘Raja Mahostav-2019’ by KalingaSwaraj, Pune is not ‘yet-another-Odia-festival’, but a grand new beginning for Non-resident Odias missing the Raja fun. And it has been an absolute honour for us to be associated with this event. What makes ‘Raja Mahostav’ special? Well, everything. From the list of celebrities (which include Ollywood Stars, Singers, Music Composers, Comedians, Anchors, Artists) to the extraordinary programme that awaits the audience. Undoubtedly, it’s going to be a complete package of Culture, Tradition combined with the right dose of nostalgia, fun and entertainment. We have already released the first promo video of the event which has received awe-inspiring response and has led to increased interest among Pune-based Odias. Promoting Art & Artists has always been our humble mission. As the Visual Partner, we are in the process of shooting/editing few more Promo videos which will showcase the hard work that goes behind the scene for such a grand event.