Paraja Tribe Warns Of Protest After Odisha Padma Awardee Kamala Pujari Forced To Dance Inside Hospital

Cuttack: Members of the Paraja tribal community in Odisha have warned of protests against a woman social worker who allegedly forced Padma Awardee Kamala Pujari to dance inside the intensive care unit (ICU) of SCB Medical College & Hospital in Cuttack before she was discharged.

According to sources, Harish Muduli, president of the tribal community’s association Paraja Samaja in Koraput district, warned that members will hit the street if the state government fails to take action against the social worker, identified as Mamata Behera.

“I never wanted to dance but was forced. I refused repeatedly, but she did not listen. I had to dance. I was sick and got tired,” the Padma Awardee told mediapersons.

A video has gone viral where the social worker is seen dancing with Kamala Pujari in the ICU with music playing in the background.

Defending herself, Mamata was quoted in media reports as saying that “Kamala Pujari was having a mental breakdown due to her illness and lost hope that she would survive. My intension was to make her mentally strong and help her get well soon. She herself insisted that she would do the Dhemsa dance.”

Kamala Pujari, who was conferred with the Padma Shri in 2019 for promoting organic farming and preserving over 100 varieties of indigenous seeds of different crops including paddy, was admitted to SCB for kidney-related ailments. She was discharged from the hospital on Monday.

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