OTDC celebrates Boita Bandan Utsav with orphans and senior citizens. Photo/ANI
OTDC celebrates Boita Bandan Utsav with orphans and senior citizens. Photo/ANI

Bhubaneswar: OTDC celebrates Boita Bandan Utsav with orphans, senior citizens

ANI | Updated: Nov 12, 2019 13:31 IST

Bhubaneswar (Odisha) [India] Nov 12 (ANI): Odisha Tourism Development Corporation (OTDC) on Tuesday celebrated Boita Bandan Utsav or the Boat Festival with senior citizens and orphan students of Ramkrishna Mission School at Pant Bhavan here.
Boita Bandan denotes sailing the boats in the river. It is celebrated on the auspicious day of Karti Purnima in Odisha. The Utsav is celebrated before the deity Maa Basulei who saves the fisherman from the wrath of sea and storm.
Basically, the Boita Bandan Utsav is celebrated by the fisherman community of Odisha. The traders also use to go to places like Bali, Jawa, Sumatra, and Borneo to sell their products in ancient times.
A famous traditional dance form of the Odiya fisherman named Chaiti Ghoda Naach is also performed in this festival. The dancers wear the mask of horses in this dance. Usually, these dances are based on themes such as social reformation.
The OTDC this year had selected pollution as the theme of the dance, wherein tourists were apprised of the increasing level of pollution and were advised to plant more trees.
Bali Jatra is also a part of this festival. It is related to the Odiya traders. During ancient times when the traders use to leave the region, they were sent off with Chaiti dance performance of the fisherman community. A speciality of the dance is that a female dancer too can perform the dance of a male performer.
"We have made special food arrangements for the tourists and have invited senior citizens as well as orphans to enjoy the festival. The festival was organized at Bhubaneswar, Barpur, Dhauli, and Sambalpur. This will help in creating awareness about the Boita Bandan, Bali Jatra and Chaiti dance tradition among the tourists", said Srimayee Mishra, Director, OTDC.
Akash Das Nayak, Odiya film actor and former MLA was also present to celebrate the festival. "Boita Bandan Utsav celebrates the great history of Odisha. We have also invited senior citizens and orphans. OTDC has done a great job to invite them so that they too can enjoy the Utsav," told Nayak to ANI.
Odisha government is trying to save this old tradition with the help of the public awareness program led by OTDC. Water sports and boating activities were also organised to celebrate the Bali Jatra along with Odiya cuisines. (ANI)