Bhubaneswar: The second wave of the deadly coronavirus has been devastating and heartbreaking. Odisha lost many luminaries who had done the state proud and whose further contribution in various fields would have been invaluable had they lived.
Mourning their loss, Odisha Bytes pays tribute to these well-known people.
Odia playback singer Tapu Mishra became the latest victim of the second COVID wave in Odisha when she succumbed to complications related to the infection on June 19 even after testing negative. The 36-year-old vocalist was on 100 per cent ventilator support and the infection had severely damaged her lungs. The family had also pleaded for help for her treatment. However, she lost the battle to COVID despite Odisha fervently praying for her speedy recovery.
Odisha-born IAS officer and Secretary in the Department of Industry and Internal Trade (DPIIT) Guruprasad Mohapatra also died of COVID-related complications on June 19. A 1986-batch Gujarat cadre IAS officer, he was the youngest son of renowned litterateur Mohapatra Nilamani Sahoo.
Vigilance Director Debasis Panigrahi succumbed to COVID while undergoing treatment at a private hospital in Kolkata on June 18. The 1991-batch IPS officer was airlifted to Medica Super Speciality Hospital in Kolkata on June 8 for advanced medical treatment after his condition deteriorated while undergoing treatment at a private hospital in Cuttack, where he was admitted on May 29 after testing positive for the virus.
Founder-cum-chairman of SAI International Education Group Bijaya Kumar Sahoo succumbed to post-COVID complications at a private hospital in Hyderabad on June 9. The chartered accountant-turned-entrepreneur was admitted to Ashwini Hospital, Cuttack, after testing positive for the virus on April 17. His condition, however, deteriorated later and he was taken in an air ambulance to KIMS, Hyderabad, for advanced treatment on May 19.
Former minister and senior BJD leader Bijayshree Routray passed away due to post-COVID complications while undergoing treatment at a private hospital in Bhubaneswar on June 2. He had tested positive for the virus on May 4. He died due to septicemia and multi-organ failure, hospital sources said.
NANDA KISHORE PATNAIK
The man behind the growth of women’s football in Odisha, Nanda Kishore Patnaik breathed his last at 1 pm on June 1. He had tested positive for COVID-19 on May 12 and was admitted to a private hospital in the city after his condition deteriorated. The renowned football coach had produced Indian internationals like Sradhanjali, Gitanjali Samantray, Ranjita Mohanty, Sarita Behera, Sudipta Das, and many more players.
Music director Santiraj Khosla succumbed to the virus on May 27. He breathed his last while undergoing treatment at SCB Medical College and Hospital in Cuttack. He had worked in more than 20 movies and around 2,000 Odia album songs. He had also received the State Film Award as best music director in 2019 for the film Pheriaa (Comeback).
Another noted music director Amarendra Mohanty died of COVID-19 at a private hospital on May 17. He had several superhit Odia movies to his name. These include the song Puchuki Gali from Suna Panjuri. He had also composed the music for Vasudha, Rama Laxman, Bhai Hela Bhagari, Stree and Kandhei Akhire Luha.
Renowned sculptor and Padma Vibhusan awardee Raghunath Mohapatra passed away at AIIMS-Bhubaneswar on May 9. He was admitted to the premier medical institute on April 22 after he tested positive for COVID-19. He, however, lost the battle and passed away at 3.49 pm.
Just about 10 days after Raghunath Mohapatra’s death, his younger son Prashant Mohapatra (47), who was also a former captain of Odisha’s Ranji Trophy cricket team and BCCI referee, died of the infection at the same hospital on May 9. Prashant along with his father Raghunath Mohapatra and elder brother Jasobant was admitted on April 22 after they tested positive for COVID-19. Jashobanta, who was shifted to SUM Covid Hospital from AIIMS in a critical condition, succumbed to the virus the following day.
Noted violinist Swarna Khuntia succumbed to COVID-19 on May 6. Born and brought in Cuttack, she was one of the few North Indian classical solo violinists from Odisha to have specialised in the ‘Gayaki Ang’ of the violin. She was the daughter of renowned tabla and Odissi pakhawaj exponent Pandit Harmohan Khuntia. She was working as a Senior Assistant Professor in violin in the Department of Instrumental Music, Faculty of Performing Arts, Banaras Hindu University since November 2006.