Bhubaneswar: Today marks Odisha pride Biju Patnaik’s 105th birthday. He was born on 5th March 1916 in Cuttack city. His full name was Bijayananda Pattnaik but people fondly used to call him Biju Pattnaik or Biju Babu. Biju Pattnaik held the Odisha chief minister’s office two times, once when in congress and later when he was in Janata Dal.
Biju Pattnaik was awarded the highest Indonesian award, “Bhoomi Putra,” honorary citizenship for his help during Indonesia’s freedom struggle. There are many Biju Patnaik contributions towards Odisha, like Paradeep port, Rourkela Steel Plant, among others. He was also an excellent pilot and became the first war pilot of India in the First India and Pakistan War in 1948.
Biju Patnaik’s wife, Gyan Patnaik, was a Punjab resident, and the two married in 1939. They have three children. Biju Patnaik and Gyan Patnaik’s wedding was a love marriage. Biju Patnaik was an Odia Karan boy, while Gyan Patnaik was from a Sikh family in Punjab. Very few people know that Gyan Patnaik was one of the few women who had a commercial pilot’s license before becoming independent.
His three children are named Prem Patnaik, Geeta Mehta, and Naveen Patnaik. Prem Patnaik is an industrialist in Delhi, Geeta Mehta is a writer, and Naveen Patnaik is the Chief Minister of Orissa. Naveen Patnaik is also affectionately called by his mother Gyan Patnaik as Pappu. Naveen Patnaik Writer before coming to Orissa Politics.
At one point in time, Biju Patnaik was considered very close to Nehru, and after that, he was also with Indira Gandhi. But in 1969, due to some differences, he left the Congress and formed his own party called Utkal Congress. Biju Patnaik was one of the leaders who were arrested at the time of the Emergency. Biju Patnaik contested the Lok Sabha election for the first time in 1977, and he chose Kendrapada for this. Later, he was in charge of the steel ministry in the center.
The state government is celebrating Biju Jayanti as Panchayati Raj Day. Various events are being organized on the occasion of Biju Jayanti.BJD supremo and chief minister Naveen Patnaik will lay a wreath at the statue of Bijubabu in Forest Park at 10.45 aAM today, and later, he will address party workers through video conferencing.
The BJD and the state government have taken up extensive programs on the occasion of Panchayati Raj Day. BJD president and chief minister Naveen Patnaik has called on every member of the party to re-dedicate himself to the state’s service and adhere to party unity, discipline, and discipline. All schools and colleges in the state will be closed today for Panchayati Raj Day. Also, all universities in the state and all degree colleges under higher education will remain closed.