Bande Utkal Janani: Labour Minister suggests ‘Odisha’ instead of ‘Utkal’

Bhubaneswar: Labour and Energy Minister Sushant Singh courted a controversy today with his suggestion to replace Utkal with Odisha in ‘Bande Utkal Janani’ song.

“Government should consider the sentiments of western Odisha residents and change the Bande Utkal Janani to Bande Odisha Janani. So far I am not aware of what the state government is planning to do,” said Labour and Energy Minister Sushant Singh.

“It is an attempt to make an issue out of nothing. The faster the state government grants sate song status to Bande Utkala Janani, the better it is. The more it is delayed, the State government & the administration will be responsible,” said Prabhukalyan Mohapatra, son of Kantakabi, the composer of Bande Utkala Janani.

After Singh’s comment, BJD party spokesperson Pratap Deb said that every individual has the right to express their personal opinion but in this case the decision has already been taken.

“In a democracy, everyone can come forward and express their opinion as law is equal for everyone. But when a decision has already been taken in the Vidhan Sabha, any individual’s view is void,” Deb said.

Responding to the Labour Minister’s comments, BJP leader Golak Mahapatra said, “All the formalities have already been done on whether the song will be changed or not and the documents are with the Home Department. Now it is for the government to decide.”

A few days back, protesters under the banner of ‘Ame Odia’ organisation took to streets demanding state song status to ‘Bande Utkala Janani.’

The protesters had lamented that it is unfortunate that the song which had stirred the souls of Odias during the fight for a separate province is yet to get the state song status.