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Who was the First Chief Minister of Odisha?

Harekrushna Mahatab, a towering figure in Odisha’s political landscape, left an indelible mark as the state’s first Chief Minister. A visionary leader, orator, and social reformer, Mahatab played a pivotal role in shaping the destiny of Odisha during its formative years post-independence. His legacy continues to resonate through the annals of Odisha’s history, as he remains a symbol of progressive governance and grassroots empowerment.

Who was the First Chief Minister of Odisha?

Harekrushna Mahatab, fondly remembered as the “Utkal Keshari,” stands as a towering figure in Odisha’s political history. A stalwart of the Indian National Congress and a key figure in the Indian independence movement, Mahatab’s contributions as the first Chief Minister of Odisha and later as a Member of Parliament left an indelible mark on the state’s socio-economic landscape.

First Chief Minister of Odisha – Basic Details

Name: Harekrushna Mahatab
Date of birth: 21st November 1899
Birthplace: Agarpada, Bengal Presidency, British India
Known for: 1st Chief Minister of Odisha
Political Party: Indian National Congress
Death: 2nd January 1987

Inaugural Chief Minister of Odisha – Early Life

Harekrushna Mahatab was born on November 21, 1899, in Agarpada village, Bhadrak district, Odisha, into an illustrious Khandayat family. His early education at Bhadrak High School was followed by enrollment at Ravenshaw College, Cuttack. However, his passion for the freedom struggle led him to abandon formal education in 1921 to join the Indian independence movement.

Political Journey of First Chief Minister of Odisha

Mahatab’s political journey began with his active involvement in the Indian National Congress. He fearlessly confronted British colonial authorities, participating in movements like Salt Satyagraha and Quit India. Mahatab’s unwavering commitment to social justice and Gandhian principles earned him widespread respect and recognition within the Congress ranks.

Harekrushna Mahatab as First Chief Minister of Odisha

Harekrushna Mahatab, Odisha’s inaugural Chief Minister, undertook transformative initiatives from 1946 to 1950 and again from 1956 to 1961. Notable accomplishments include the integration of former princely states, shifting the capital to Bhubaneswar, and overseeing the construction of the Hirakud Dam. His visionary policies aimed at industrialization, rural development, and social welfare laid the groundwork for Odisha’s modernization and economic progress.

Odisha’s First Chief Minister – Intellectual Pursuits and Contributions

Beyond his political endeavors, Mahatab was a prolific writer and intellectual luminary. He founded the Prajatantra Prachar Samiti and initiated publications like Prajatantra and Jhankar, which served as platforms for disseminating progressive ideas and fostering public discourse.

Mahatab’s scholarly pursuits culminated in the publication of “Gaon Majlis,” a seminal work recognized with the prestigious Sahitya Akademi Award in 1983. His writings reflected his deep understanding of Indian politics, history, and socio-cultural dynamics, inspiring generations of scholars and activists.

First Chief Minister of Odisha – Legacy and Recognition

Harekrushna Mahatab’s contributions to Odisha’s socio-economic development and his unwavering commitment to democratic values earned him widespread admiration and respect. The Harekrushna Mahtab State Library in Bhubaneswar stands as a testament to his enduring legacy, symbolizing his dedication to education and intellectual enlightenment.

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Who was the first Chief Minister of Odisha?

Harekrushna Mahatab, a towering figure in Odisha's political landscape, left an indelible mark as the state's first Chief Minister.

When was Harekrushna Mahatab born?

Harekrushna Mahatab was born on 21st November 1899.

What award did Mahatab's work "Gaon Majlis" receive?

Mahatab's work "Gaon Majlis" received Sahitya Akademi Award in 1983.

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