Know Padma Shri Award Nominee Shanti Devi From Odisha

Bhubaneswar: Well-known social worker of Odisha Shanti Devi will be conferred with India’s third highest civilian honour Padma Shri. She is famous for her contribution towards restoring peace in the Maoist affected areas in Odisha.

Shanti Devi, who leads voluntary organisation Seva Samaj, was born in Balasore district on April 18, 1934. She got married at the age of 17 to Mahatma Gandhi follower Dr Ratan Das. After marriage, she shifted to Koraput from Balasore. Later, she founded an ashram at Gobarapalli in Rayagada district. Her carrier in social work began from there. She worked for development and education of tribal girls.

She also founded an ashram for leprosy patients at Jabarguda under Padmapur block in Rayagada district. After working for a long time at Jabarguda, she shifted to Gunupur and founded Seva Samaj ashram there in 1964 for imparting education to the tribal girls. She wanted to make all girls self sufficient, so that they can live with self-respect in the society.

She also set up another ashram at Gunupur for the education, rehabilitation and vocational training of orphans and destitute children.

Shanti Devi was also associated with the ‘Bhoodan’ movement and worked with Acharya Vinoba Bhave Ji. In 1961, she became the secretary of Utkal Navajeevan Mandal.

She became the President of Odisha Prohibition Congress and was also associated with a number of Gandhian organisations. She is the vice-president of Agragamee’s governing body since inception.

In 1994, she received Jamunalal Bazaz Award. She is also a fecepient of Radhanath Rath peace award and many state level and national-level awards.

Also Read: Purnamasi Jani: Know This Padma Shri Awardee From Odisha

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