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Orissan Art , Archaeology, Architecture, History, Culture & Religion



by Prof. Karuna Sagar Behera

[Dr. R. P. Mohapatra born at Bhapur, Dhenkanal on 01-10-1939 died at Bhubaneswar on 14-01-1989]

Dr. R. P. Mohapatra, M.A., Dip-in-Archaeology, Ph.D., D.Litt. was an outstanding scholar, who made important contributions to historical research especially in the fields of Archaeology, Art History, religion and other aspects of our cultural history. Everyone knows of his deep learning , his love for monuments and his great scholarship. He passed away rather suddenly producing a deep sense of sorrow and grief not only his colleagues in the Orissa State Museum, but to innumerable scholars all over India. My association with him was quite intimate and dates back to the time when he was a student of the P. G. Department of History at Ravenshaw College, Cuttack. He was a Great writer. He was an eminent archaeologist. He was a Great lover of Orissan Art. He enriched the Orissa State Museum with valuable Art-treasures which he collected in course of his field work. He was a unique person. He was gentle, helpful to scholars and he had developed passion for study. I have always admired his love of learning, scholarship and objective approach. FROM THE DARKNESS OF THE PAST, HE DISCOVERED THE GLORY THAT WAS ORISSA. Through his monumental volume he could project the greatness of the world famous caves of Khandagiri and Udayagiri in a broader Indian prospective. Further research on Jaina Monuments of Orissa, enabled scholars to appreciate the value of our treasures of Jainism. He added a new dimension to our cultural history by study of the life style of the people, costume and ornaments etc. on the basis of tangible sculptural representations. His work on the Military History of Orissa is a valuable contribution to our knowledge on the subject. His magnificent volume on the Archaeological sites and Monuments of Orissa is an important authoritative reference book on the subject based on pain-staking field work and study. It is a matter of misfortune for Orissa that such a fine scholar passed away suddenly. I hope that his dedicated work and scholarship will inspire generations of scholars to work on the history and culture of Orissa. Dr. Mohapatra is no more with us but he will live through his works and his ideals will inspire all illumine us as he did when he was alive. I pay my tribute of respect to his hallowed memory.

Prof. K. S. Behera, Former Vice Chancelor Fakirmohan University, Orissa