Report by BadalTah; Rayagada, April 25: Kedar Nath Panda, Sr Advocate & a renowned Social Activist of this region, had his last breath at the age of 71 years. He was the founder member of Rayagada Nagarika Manch and actively involved in raising voices against development deficit in the district due to lackadaisical attitude of local citizens, bureaucrats & politicians. He even visited hinterlands like Parsali to hear the plights of Dangaria tribes. He was equally philanthropic in dress distribution in interior tribal villages. His advocacy for restoring around 800 acres of land from defunct Jeypore Sugar Company will be really remembered by local netizens. He envisioned several development projects in Rayagada like a Govt Medical College, an air strip, a smart old age home & orphanage, working women’s hostel, indoor & outdoor stadiums, etc.
He served as a municipality Councillor, Trustee Member of Jagannath Temple, Balunkeswar temple and many other social outfits. He always believed in sociallisation process and allied with those initiatives, which were meant for human welfare. Old age and ailing body did not deter him while he walked through the town to collect donation for Tamilnadu flood or a campaign for a govt medical college in Rayagada. He had the history of Rayagada in his mouth. As a master strategist & Chanakya of Rayagada, he dared to face illegalities & corrupt practices. He was an ardent champion of Odia culture.
We really lost a friend, philosopher and guide in Rayagada. He shall always be in our memory as a sincere son of the soil. He was fearlessly championing for people’s rights. To reminisce his contribution, floral tribute was offered to the departed soul at Sanskruti Bhawan, Rayagada. Dr Surya Narayan Tripathy, Ex-Principal, Rayagada College, Advocate Sunil Kar, Advocate Arun Panigrahi, Sri Durga Panda, DCC President, Smt Bidulata Huika, State Convenor, Odisha Adibasi Manch, Prof Dr D K Mohanty, Sri Ranjan Rath, Press Club President, Sri Narayan Panda, Sri Siba Gouda, Sri Jogeswsr Das, State Secretary-BMS, Sri Sangram Pattanaik, Sri Atreya, Sri Nagaraju, Sri Rajesh Padhi from Centurion, Sri Jagannath Panda, Sri Ajay Rath & many others cherished their memories with late Kedarnath Panda. Dr.Badal Tah moderated the entire event.
“Though his physical need was minimal, his aspiration for all round development of Rayagada knew no bound”, said Huika. According to Dr Tripathy, he was of non-conformist and anti-establishment nature. He dared to question the injustice to the power that be. “He acted madly in the development issues of Rayagada”, said Jogesh. Sri Sakti Panigrahi from IMFA lamented about the leadership deficit in his absence.
It was resolved to request district administration to name a road in his name such as Kedar Marg. He dreamt of a women polytechnic in Rayagada. He also envisioned to upgrade the ME school at Brahmin street to a high school. Dr D K Mohanty suggested to take up the case with the District Collector.
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