Shree Laxminarayana Sahoo

Born :- 03-Oct-1880
Died :- 18-Jan-1962
Place of Birth :- Manikhamba, Baleswar

Odia writer, poet, journalist, social activist, reformer, historian and politician Shri Laxminarayan Sahu was born to Kshetramohan Sahu in the village Manikhamba near the then Baleshwar district. He was the only child of his parents.

After school education, Laxminarayan did his M.A. in multiple subjects. He also did L.L.B. Initially he joined as a manager at the Victoria Club Hotel in Puri. A few days later, he felt disillusioned with his job and took to teaching.

Laxminarayan became popular for his writings on tribal societies, their rich culture and their problems due to poverty and exploitation. He was deeply involved in the rural dance and music culture of Odisha, the Odia language, literature and culture, and made uninterrupted attempts for its improvement.

Apart from Odia, Laxminarayan was also conversant in Hindi, Bengali and Sanskrit. Among the stories, ‘Beena’, Sulata’, ‘Control Room’ and poetry "Pashar" and the social story in English ‘Spring of the Soul’ made him famous.

Laxminarayan was elected to the Odisha Assembly in 1947 and was a member of the ‘Constituent Assembly’ of India. He was praised by Ambedkar for his logically sound and eloquent speeches during the drafting of the Constitution of India.

Laxminarayan had accepted human service as the only goal of his life. He raised his voice against caste system from his student days. As a social reformer, he explained the justification behind the six shreds of the sacred threads worn by the Brahmins, which almost no Brahmin had any knowledge of.

In 1955, Laxminarayan was awarded the Padma Shri for his contribution to literature and education. He was called the chariot of history for his work on the history of Odisha. He was a member of the Asiatic Society, President of the Odia Sahitya Akademi and member of the Servants of India Society.

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