Cuttack: From being a choreographer in Ollywood to selling poultry, life has dealt a hard blow to Jitu Rout. But he has no qualms about it and neither is he ashamed.
The pandemic brought the whole Odia film industry to a halt, rendering many people jobless and without work. Rout is one of them. He has now opened a poultry shop near Madhupatna overbridge in Cuttack.
“The pandemic and the prolonged lockdown left me with no option but to start selling poultry. I had a smooth life before this situation. All shootings were stopped due to the pandemic. Then there came a time when it was difficult for me to meet my daily needs. Then I thought of opening a poultry shop,” said Jitu.
“In fact, I had opened this shop during the first wave of the pandemic only. Initially, I used to cover my face to evade the possibility of people recognising me. Now I am not ashamed of doing this work because it has helped me to overcome my financial hardships,” he added.
“I keep recollecting memories of my time in Ollywood in my leisure time by seeing photos with heroes, heroines and dancers on the shooting sets. All the photos were taken before the Corona pandemic hit,” said Jitu.
Jitu belongs to Nua Sahi at Shankarpur in Cuttack. He was born in 1978 and started his career in Ollywood as a group dancer. He later turned into a choregrapher. He has directed over 7,000 music videos and choreographed in 13 Odia movies so far.
He has choreographed some popular songs like ‘Chalire Tora Padma Phute’, ‘Mu Eka Tamara’, ‘Tora Lamba Beni Alo Manini,’ ‘Silei Le Silei Le’ and many more.
He has also acted in many films.
“Life taught me that one should not be ashamed of doing any work. No work is small. Some people praised me for this new venture while others made fun of me. But I took both in my stride and didn’t let it affect me at all. I want to live with respect,” said Jitu.
“Initially, my family members were also not happy with this decision. But, now they are encouraging me,” he added.
However, Jitu is still hopeful that Ollywood will become fully functional and he too, will get back into action once the situation is back to normal.
“Till then, I will struggle for my survival and for my children’ s higher studies,” said 43-year-old Jitu.