Four eminent personalities from Odisha have been selected to receive Padma awards this year which were announced on Wednesday on the eve of the Republic Day.
Famous actor, director and producer Sadhu Meher, eminent renal transplant surgeon Dr Mukut Minz, Sambalpuri singer of the Rangabati fame Jitendra Haripal and Odishi danseuse Aruna Mohanty will receive the Padma Shri award.
“I am extremely happy and express gratitude to the Union Government for choosing me for Padma Shri. I feel honoured and I dedicate this award to the actors and artists of Odisha. I pray for their prosperity and development of cinema,” Meher said in his reaction.
Notably, Meher has worked with internationally-acclaimed directors Satyajit Ray, Shyam Benegal, Buddhadeb Dasgupta, Mrinal Sen and Tapan Sinha, among others.
Meher has earned a name for acting in Hindi and Odia movies. He has played significant roles in films Bhuvan Shome, Ankur and Mrigaya. He bagged the National Film Award for Best Actor for Ankur.
Dr Minz said, “I have maintained diligence and honesty throughout my career spanning over 30 years. I was expecting recognition, for which I am thankful to the Union Government and people of Odisha. It’s a big encouragement for me, and I am very happy.”
It may be mentioned that Dr Minz had recently performed renal transplant surgery on External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj.