DEMAND FOR CONFERRING CLASSICAL STATUS TO ODISSI MUSIC

CULTURE

21/09/20

DR. AMAR PATNAIK (Odisha): Sir, the Odisha Heritage Cabinet, chaired by hon. Chief Minister, Shri Naveen Patnaik, passed a resolution on 2nd September, 2020, requesting the Government of India for conferring 'classical status' to Odissi music. This is a significant move towards promoting the rich heritage and vibrant cultural traditions of Odisha, which would also help in honouring the sentiments and individuality of the Odia community. Odissi dance and music were inspired and enriched by the Jagannath culture. More than a religious deity for the people of Odisha, Lord Jagannath is the fountainhead of our cultural, intellectual and emotional sustenance. Bharat Muni's Natya Shastra referred to the Odra Magadhi style of music and dance which belongs to Odisha. Similarly, Matangi Muni also mentioned Udra Magadhi Prabriti known as 'Kalinga music' or 'Utkal music'. With its distinctive aspects such as its own tradition, codified grammars, specific texts, ragas, talas, gita and classical style of recital, Odissi music can be distinguished from Carnatic and Hindustani classical music. It has all the characteristic features for being recognized as a classical form in its own right. The Government of India had recognized Odia dance as a classical dance form in 1964 and Odia was classified as a classical language in 2014. Integral to both Odia dance and language, Odissi music should also be treated the same way. In an effort to rediscover, preserve and promote the musical ethos and bequeath the rich legacy of Odissi music to our posterity, I put forth the request of the Odisha State Government and sincerely urge the Ministry to accord classical status to Odissi music.