Remembering Madhu Babu on his Birth Anniversary

Utkal Gaurav Madhusudan Das

TNI Bureau:  Today, Odisha remembers with deep gratitude and pays its rich tributes to one of the greatest sons of “Utkal Mata” and founding fathers of Modern Odisha “Utkal Gaurav” Madhusudan Das on his 173rd birth anniversary. His birthday is celebrated as “Swabhiman Divas” and “Lawyers’ Day all across the state.

Madhusudan Das, popularly known as “Madhu Barrister” was born on 28 April, 1848 in an aristocratic family of the village Satyabhamapur of Cuttack district. His father Choudhury Raghunath Das was a legal practitioner by profession and his mother was Parvati Devi.

After completion of Matriculation from Ravenshaw Collegiate School at Cuttack, Madhusudan went to Calcutta University for higher studies and became the first Odia to obtain a B.A., an M.A. and a B.L. Degree (Law Degree). He returned to Cuttack in 1881, started his legal career and became the first Odia to be a lawyer.

During those periods, he was deeply moved to see the miserable plight of Odias and felt that Odisha would have to suffer until it was united. Thus, he took solid stand to amalgamate all the Odia-speaking regions into an Independent united Orissa Province (present-day Odisha).

He made all efforts to establish the “Utkal Sabha” in 1882 at Cuttack. He served as the Vice President of the “Utkal Sabha” in 1889. It was the first organization in Odisha to promote national movement. Later, he founded the “Utkal Union Conference” or “Utkal Sammilani” which came into existence in December 1903 with the extinction of ‘Utkal Sabha”. Under his strong leadership and over three decades of tireless efforts, separate state of united Orissa was formed on 1 April 1936.

Madhusudan Das was also the pioneer in the field of economic development of Odisha. He set up “Utkal Tannery”, a factory producing shoes and other leather products which employed about 300 workers.

He has written some poems in both Odia and English language. The famous poems of Madhusudan Das are “Jati Itihas”, “Utkal Santan”, “Jananira Ukti” etc.

Madhubabu had the rare distinction of becoming First Odia in a number of fields such as First Odia Graduate, First Odia M.A., First Odia Law Graduate, First Odia Advocate, First Odia to visit Europe., First Odia to become a member of Legislative Council and member of Central Legislative Assembly and First Odia Minister.

“Kulabruddha” Madhusudan Das had left this mortal world on 4th February 1934, at the age of 85.

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