Odisha Literary Festival: Literature always a potent weapon for social change, says CM Patnaik

Congratulating The New Indian Express group and Editorial Director Prabhu Chawla for successfully organising OLF, the Chief Minister said this festival plays an important role in more ways than one. 

Published: 23rd September 2019 08:49 AM  |   Last Updated: 23rd September 2019 02:25 PM   |  A+A-

Naveen Patnaik

Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik addressing the valedictory function of Odisha Literary Festival 2019 in Bhubaneswar. | ( Photo | Irfana )

By Express News Service

BHUBANESWAR: Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Sunday said literature has always been a potent weapon for social change and guiding the society.

Addressing the concluding session of the 8th edition of Odisha Literary Festival organised by The New Indian Express, the Chief Minister said all along, literature has been the essence of social transformation and happiness.

“The spark for major social changes across the globe has been ignited by revolutionary thinkers and writers. We all know how Voltaire and Rousseau had influenced the French revolution,” he said.

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Stating that Odia Mahabharat of Sarala Das was a transformative factor in the literary landscape of Odisha, Naveen said he simply adopted the language of the masses and made it mainstream literature. “It connected people to literature and the great social traditions of that era,” he said.

The Chief Minister said similarly, Bhima Bhoi’s attempts at fighting out class barriers, Fakir Mohan’s role in awakening the society for girl child education and Prativa Ray’s celebration of woman power are a few of the innumerable instances as to how literature can bring social transformation.

“Literature makes question things. Literature makes us dream, to transform. Without literature there would be no great imagination or heart to do what we do in our daily lives, nor a quest to improve our future,” he said.

Congratulating The New Indian Express group and Editorial Director Prabhu Chawla for successfully organising OLF, the Chief Minister said this festival plays an important role in more ways than one. 

“I hope the deliberations here will encourage our writers of today and in times to come will enrich our great tradition and empower our people with knowledge and creativity,” he said.

Welcoming Naveen, Chawla congratulated him for his fifth consecutive victory in the Assembly elections since 2000 and becoming the longest serving Chief Minister of the country. Though he speaks less, his words wins millions of hearts, he said. 

Deputy Resident Editor of The New Indian Express, Bhubaneswar, Siba Mohanty also welcomed the Chief Minister. During the two days of the OLF, there were 18 sessions in which 36 speakers participated. The OLF covered issues ranging from Writing about Kashmir, the word in Odisha, crime writing, history and music.

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