The fraternity of KISS-DU, under the aegis of Saheed Laxman Nayak Research Chair and Tribal Advisory Council, KISS-DU observed the 125th Birth Anniversary of tribal leader Saheed Laxman Naik virtually on 22nd November 2023. The university paid tribute to the legend who had played a pivotal role in the creation of Odisha Province, which was established on 1st April 1936.

Hon’ble Vice Chancellor, KISS-DU Professor Deepak Kumar Behera, in his Welcome Address, talked about how industrialization started in Odisha. He reiterated Hon’ble Founder KISS and KIIT Dr. Achyuta Samanta’s vision behind establishing various Research Chairs in the university. Professor Behera added that the idea is to translate KISS-DU into a research hub and encourage research scholars to study the life and works of the state’s legends. He also advised the students to focus on their studies and emulate these tribal leaders.

Dr. Kanhu Charan Mahali, IPS (Retd.), The Director General talked about NFST and other scholarships and threw light on the life and struggles of Saheed Laxman Naik. He spoke about how Saheed Laxman Naik sacrificed his life for the sake of the country. Saheed Laxman Naik organised the rebels against exploitation by the officials of Jeypore Samasthanam. This brought him recognition as a potential tribal leader and the Indian National Congress admitted Naik into its fold. During the course of his training in the Naupuri Training Centre for Congress workers, Naik had the opportunity to meet and interact with several zonal and state-level leaders which enabled him to broaden his horizons.

The occasion was graced by Dr. Naku Hasdah Department of Odia, Sambalpur University, in his deliberation, Dr. Hasdah, drew reference from History that how earlier there was a culture of tribal life and he introduced the life of village and town. He highlighted the importance of desi medicine; belief system, rural life and upbringing.

Dr. Sunaram Soren, Santhal Programme, School of Comparative Tribal Languages and Literatures, KISS-DU delivered the Vote of Thanks.