Pradeep Pattanayak

The mortal remains of former Odisha Legislative Assembly Speaker and seven-time MLA, Surjya Narayan Patro were consigned to flames with full state honours at his native place in Digapahandi of Ganjam district on Sunday afternoon. 

A sea of people from different walks of life bade a tearful adieu to the departed leader. 

Earlier in the day, the leader’s mortal remains were kept at his Nayapalli residence in Bhubaneswar for the last ‘darshan’. At 9.30 am. Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik reached Patro's residence to pay his last tribute to the leader. Thereafter, the body was taken to the Odisha Legislative Assembly and then to the BJD party office where the leaders and his followers paid tributes to their leader. 

En route to Digapahandi, people at several places in Berhampur offered their last tribute to the departed leader. A large number of people also turned up at the cremation ground in Digapahandi to bid farewell to their favourite leader. 

The mortal remains were consigned to flames as per the Hindu rituals. He was accorded full state honour and gun salute. The departed leader’s son Biplab Patra lit the funeral pyre. 

Notably, Patro had passed away at a private hospital in Bhubaneswar on Saturday. He was 75. As per reports, Patro was admitted to the hospital on Saturday afternoon after his health condition deteriorated.

Patro was a seven-time legislator and the sitting BJD MLA of Digapahandi.

Patro was born on December 24, 1948 at Berhampur in Ganjam. He did his BSc and LLB followed by social service before joining politics. In 1977, Surjya Patro became the Municipal Councillor of Berhampur.  He won the Assembly elections for seven consecutive terms. He was elected as an MLA for the first time in 1990 from Mohana from where he was elected for four consecutive terms till 2009. He contested and won from the Janata Dal in the first two terms and then won from the same constituency on BJD tickets. 

Since 2009, he had been the MLA of Digapahandi for three consecutive terms. As a minister in the Biju Patnaik and Naveen Patnaik governments, he held various important portfolios. He was the Minister of Forest and Environment, Energy, Tourism, IT, Culture, Revenue, Information and Public Relations, Food Supply and Consumer Welfare.
Surjya Narayan Patro took over as the Speaker of the Odisha Assembly in 2019 and resigned in 2022.

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