Odisha Channel Bureau
Bhubaneswar: Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik has written a letter to Union Culture & Tourism Minister Prahlad Singh Patel drawing the latter’s attention to the ongoing efforts put by the art and music lovers of Odisha to confer classical status to Odishi Music (vocal and instrumental).
“It is a matter of concern that Odishi music, the tradition of which dates back almost to second century B.C.E. is yet to be recognised as a classical music by the Government of India,” said Patnaik in his letter dated September 24.
The Odishan music has, at least a tradition of 2000 years and is based on written Sastra and its own core Raga. It has a distinctive rendition style based on codified grammar, the characteristic giti system of classical texts and having its own tala, different from Hindustani and Carnatic music. “No doubt Odishi music has all the requisite and exclusive characteristics to be recognised as a classical music,” said Patnaik.
The Chief Minister pointed out his government has undertaken pioneering efforts to get classical status for Odishi music at an institutional level, i.e. establishment of Guru Kelucharan Mohapatra Odishi Research Centre and Odisha Sangeet Natak Akademi with the purpose of promotion of music, dance and drama in the State of Odisha.
Another milestone in the path of promotion of the culture, art, music and tradition of Odisha was the establishment of the Utkal University of Culture way back in the year 1999 by the Odisha government, he added.
Odishi music has made significant impact on Indian cultural scenario. Several Odishan playwrights, sculptors, painters and choreographers have earned national and international fame. Odishi dance has been recognised as one of the classical forms and stands eminent because of its characteristic bhangi, thani, lalitya, mudra etc., but ironically, Odishi music is yet to be recognised as a classical form of music at national level, he said in his letter.
Patnaik further pointed out that the State Heritage Cabinet in its meeting held on October 2 this year decided to draw the attention of Union Government towards according classical status to the Odishi music.
He requested the Union Minister to appreciate the State’s heritage, the elegant and classical elements of Odishi music and to consider conferring classical status to it to fulfill the long cherished dream of the music lovers of Odisha.