On the 214th birth anniversary of Veer Surendra Sai people from various walks of life, including political leaders, paid rich tributes to the great freedom fighter on Sunday across the State and demanded the installation of his statue in the Parliament.
It has been a long-standing demand of the people of western Odisha which both the ruling party BJD and Opposition BJP have also supported.
Former Sambalpur MLA Raseswari Panigrahi and Rairakhol MLA Rohit Pujari have also supported the demand to honour the contribution of the braveheart at the national level.
"There is no doubt that Veer Surendra Sai is the pride of Odisha. I also demand to install his statue in the Parliament to honour the contribution of the great freedom fighter," said Rairakhol MLA Rohit Pujari.
He also added that the birthplace of Veer Surendra Sai, Khinda, will soon be converted into a tourist attraction as promised by Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik.
"We are planning along with the Tourism Department to develop Khinda. We are following up the process," said Sambalpur Collector Dibyajyoti Parida.
Rengali MLA and BJP leader Nauri Nayak said that BJP MPs have already taken up the matter in the Parliament. He said he is hopeful that under the able leadership of Prime Minister Modi, the promise will be fulfilled.
Several socio-cultural organisations have also urged the government to take steps to install a statue of Surendra Sai at the Parliament.
Notably, Veer Surendra Sai was the first freedom fighter who had raised an armed struggle against the British imperialist forces in 1827, about 30 years before the 1857 Sepoy uprising.