Lockdown Squad: Unique Initiative To Celebrate Odisha Art, Culture

It features artists like Shyam Kumar, MasterChef 2020 winner Abinas Nayak, Rapper Big Deal, animal lover Kusal Biswas and many more.


Bhubaneswar: It started with the watercolour strokes of artist Shyam Kumar on April 16, when the “Lockdown Squad’’ started its live sessions, but the efforts of the team reached the pinnacle of engaging followers on the social media when celebrated chef and MasterChef 2020 winner Abinas Nayak set the saga rolling into a huge success on Tuesday evening.

“Lockdown Squad’’ campaign by the Bhubaneswar Development Authority and Bhubaneswar.Me, a Smart City initiative, is a popular platform where the love for this wonderful heritage city is shared with others through curated pictures and stories. The campaign will continue till May 3.

Now in its final leg, the campaign has been gaining momentum and bringing in a lot of viewers through its live sessions on Facebook and Instagram. Tuesday’ s highlight was MasterChef 2020 winner, Abinas Nayak. He came with his modern twists to traditional Odia food, while keeping the nostalgia intact. In the MasterChef 2020 edition, he proved that Odisha is India’s best kept secret not only in the tourism and cultural field, but equally vibrant with its culinary delights for their distinct aroma and natural flavours.

The much-awaited session started with Abinas talking about how the lockdown can be used by everyone to explore their creative self and new talents. Through the interactive session, he also gave a brief insight into what drew him towards cooking and how it became a way of expression as an art form. He also answered questions regarding plating techniques, his fitness routine, hobbies and a lot more. 

Stressing the importance of how plating a dish is similar to storytelling, he also demonstrated a preparation of `paga’- a traditional Odia delicacy of spicy and tangy mix. The `ambula’ tomato `paga’ had a beautiful floral rendition in it in terms of presentation and many more nostalgic elements. 

Following the session of the MasterChef winner #TheLockdownSquad is geared up for a star-studded lineup in the coming few days. There will be superstars like Rapper Big Deal, Akshita Bhanj Deo, a royal member of the Bhanj dynasty, taking us through a virtual tour of the Belgadia Palace in Baripada and showcasing the legacy of Mayurbhanj that is preserved till date.

Among creative activities, there will be a session on Sustainable Livelihoods through Solar Energy with Palak Aggarwal, a session on digital art and its significance as a form of expressing social causes by Swayam Mohanty, popularly known as “Digital Defacer’’ on social media. 

Another session will be on animal welfare with Kusal Biswas. An animal lover ever since childhood, Kusal has been working tirelessly in the field of animal welfare, care and rescue. 

This thoughtfully planned campaign by Bhubaneswar.Me and BDA is far from over and this week’s star studded schedule is testimony to that. So, don’t miss out on the opportunity to create from Home with #TheLockdownSquad LIVE Sessions on its social media pages.


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