Makers of Modern Odisha: Sriram Chandra Bhanja Deo

Sri Ram Chandra was born on 17th December 1871 into a royal family in the princely state of Mayurbhanj. He ascended to the throne on 15th August 1892. He worked for the overall development of Mayurbhanj state and implemented a variety of benevolent measures to benefit the local populace. Pandit Utkalmani Gopabandhu became this ruler’s confidant, philosopher, and guide. Sri Ram Chandra made significant contributions to language, health, and administration. During his reign, a narrow gauge railway was built between Rupsa and Baripada. He spent Rs.6 lakh from the royal treasury to construct two major reservoirs at Haldiha and Haladia. Similarly, he increased the number of primary schools in his royal jurisdiction from 44 to 400.

Although he was the king of Mayurbhanj, he was devoted to Orissa as a whole. Under Madhusudan’s capable leadership, he accelerated the process of establishing Orissa as a separate Province. Sri Ram Chandra presided over the Utkal Sammilani’s first session in 1903. Following that, as a result of this Sammilani’s concerted efforts, Orissa’s dream of becoming a separate state became a reality on 1st April 1936. On 22nd February 1912, this illustrious son of Orissa died.

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