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Pramod Panigrahi passes away

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Odisha Sun Times Bureau

Cuttack, May 21:

Former Odisha Law Secretary Pramod Panigrahi is no more.He breathed his last at a private hospital in Cuttack on 19 May where he was being treated for a brief illness.

He is survived by his sons Charudutta and Sthitapragyna. His wife, litterateur Mandakini Panigrahi had passed away in 2007.

Pramod PanigrahiPanigrahi hailed from Aska in Ganjam district and belonged to one of the most respected lawyers’ families of Odisha. His father Justice Lingaraj Panigrahi and his uncles, Barrister Madhusudan Panigrahi and Radhakrishna Panigrahi were revered names in the state’s legal circles.

Known for his superior aesthetic taste, debonair countenance and dynamism, his communication skills and depth of knowledge in several disciplines, he had a wide circle of admirers.

Truly an “officer and a gentleman”, his multifarious talents strode across legal services, theatre, literature, film acting and lyrics writing.Whether it was working closely with the the legendary chief minister Biju Patnaik or penning poems, he was equally brilliant in everything he tried his hands at.

His early college days at Ravenshaw’s Agami mess earned him friends like Manoj Das, Sarat Misra, Girija Patnaik , Amiya Tripathy, Anant Mohapatra, and many more exceptional figures from various domains. His foray into the world of theatre and films began with his stint at Kolkata with leading theatre and film personalities like Pahari Sanyal .

Panigrahi was the lead actor in “Parinam” (1965 ) produced by Kabiraj Krushna Chandra Tripathy Sharma of Aska. He also wrote the lyrics for Odia film Manikajodi (1963) including the immortal romantic “akhi phula…

Closely associated with Annapurna theatre movement in Cuttack, he had experimented in different formats of acting and direction with doyens like Babi, Dukhiram,Teema and all the leading lights of the era. Writing for Balakrushna Dash, teaming with Akshaya Mohanty, Parthasarathy Mohapatro resulted in classic compositions.

He started writing in his college days and was awarded Achiever of Young Talent at the Bishuba Milana by the then Chief Minister Dr HK Mahatab.

Sri Panigrahi has discharged his duties as a judicial judge in various districts & the High Court of Odisha including Phulbani, Bolangir, Puri, Cuttack and was popular as an honest, upright and judicious officer. Never the one to compromise on his integrity, he is a reference point in many outstanding judgments he has delivered in his brilliant career.

He had worked closely with Justice G.B.Patnaik, Late Justice R.C.Patnaik, Justice Ranganath Misra and Justice B.L.Hansaria of the Supreme Court.