I still feel deeply connected to my roots in Odisha, says Nandita Das on being conferred Prabasi Odia Samman

Actress, filmmaker and activist Nandita Das, will be among six people to receive the Prabasi Odia Samman. Nandita, who will be conferred the award on Friday at New Delhi-based think tank Odisha Forum’s annual function at the PHD Chamber of Commerce and Industry, said that she feels deeply connected to her roots in Odisha and that she finds it good to be pan-Indian.

“While I never lived in Odisha, my father has instilled in me his own passion for Odia food, craft, arts and culture. In my childhood, I went to Odisha every single year. So while I feel like a global citizen, I still feel deeply connected to my roots in Odisha,” Nandita said in a statement, quoted by Bollywoodlife.com. 

“Though I always say I’m half Odia, half Gujarati and I’ve done films in 10 different languages, it’s nice to be pan-Indian. It also does feel special to be selected for this honour by the Odisha Forum,” she added.

Nandita will be joined by a doctor and social worker Swarup Ranjan Mishra, the space entrepreneur and designer Susmita Mohanty, doctor-scientist Pinaki Panigrahi, noted dance exponent Sharon Lowen, and agricultural scientist Trilochan Mohapatra.

Nandita is not only an acclaimed actress but also a conscientious activist who speaks her mind. In fact, recently the actress raised her voice and spoke in support of the LGBTQ community. She said that the archaic law that criminalises homosexuality is shameful, and the impending decriminalisation of homosexuality by repealing Section 377 is imperative. 

Nandita Das’s second directorial venture, Manto narrates a turbulent time of change that greatly influenced author and playwright Saadat Hasan Manto’s life. The film is a portrait of a courageous writer and complex man, known for his fearless opinions.