Raja Mahotsav 2023 : Raja, the annual festival celebrating womanhood in Odisha, was inaugurated at Odisha Tourism Development Corporation (OTDC) Panthanivas in Bhubaneswar today. The Raja Mahotsav was inaugurated by Tourism Minister Shri Aswini Kumar Patra formally inaugurated the Mahotsav in presence of Chairman OTDC Dr Lenin Mohanty and General Manager OTDC Shri Lagnajit Rout, as part of the three-day festival from 14-16 June 2023.
Speaking on the occasion, Honble Tourism Minister Shri Aswini Kumar Patra said that OTDC has made itself synonymous with the festival of Raja. The OTDC Raja Mahotsav which was started in the year 2010 aims at promoting authentic Odia delicacies coupled with celebrations during Raja including traditional Raja Doli, Raja Pitha and Raja Paan, as a tribute to Mother Earth as well as a mark of respect for women folk. Chairman OTDC Dr. Lenin Mohanty also spoke on the occasion and thanked the audiences as well as media personnel present for helping OTDC in propagating the culture and traditions of the state.
On the occasion of Raja Mahotsav, special arrangements have been made to ensure sale of Raja delicacies and sweets across all hospitality units of OTDC in Odisha including Nimantran Restaurant in Bhubaneswar and Silver City Boat Club in Cuttack. Further, traditional Raja Doli has been set up and Mehndi artists have been invited at Panthanivas Bhubaneswar to beautify the hands of women visiting OTDC Panthanivas in the above 3 days, free of cost. Jt. Secretary Dept. of Tourism Rajkishore Palei and Company Secretary OTDC Prashant Panda also spoke on the occasion.
Further, in an effort to make Raja Pitha accessible to one and all and alodso to celebrate the festive fervor, ‘Pitha on Wheels’ special Vans have been deployed by OTDC for sale of Raja delicacies and shall be stationed at various important places of Bhubaneswar like Sahid Nagar, Khandagiri and Patia etc. in Bhubaneswar from 8 am to 5 pm. These vans will provide option for take away of Raja Pitha and delicacies prepared by OTDC.
It may be noted here that the sale of Raja delicacies in the year 2022 helped OTDC generate revenues of around INR 12 Lakh. With the celebrations this year, OTDC aims to improve further on the sale volume of Raja Pitha and more importantly keep the culture and traditions associated with Raja alive.
The inaugural event saw the participation of senior Officials from OTDC and Dept. of Tourism. Enthusiastic citizens, especially girls and young women thronged OTDC Panthanivas and enjoyed the experience of Raja Doli and Raja Pitha on the occasion.