Manoranjan Das’s BUXI JAGABANDHU Director: Debabrata Pattanayak


Playwright: Manoranjan Das

Director: Debabrata Pattanayak

Group: Dynamic Platform, Bhubaneshwar

Language: Odiya

Duration: 1 hr 45 mins

The Play

The Great Paika Rebellion of 1817 happened under the leadership of Buxi Jagabandhu, the commander of the forces of the King of Khordha. Colonel Harkot, who was in-charge of the British East India Company in 1803, was planning to capture Odisha, which was strategically placed between Bengal and Madras, after the British had conquered Bengal in the North and Madras in the South. To achieve this, the first target was to make a treaty with Deogan and slowly bring Odisha under the Company’s control. Colonel’s scheme was to conquer Puri via Chilika Lake. Mukunda Dev II was the then king of Odisha. Colonel managed to get Maludar Fateh Mahammad into his fold and entered Odisha. Subsequently, they imprisoned King Mukunda Dev II. The Minister of Mukunda Dev II, Jai Rajguru was brutally killed fighting against the British. In the end, despite Buxi’s perseverance and constant resistance, he was killed by British officer Fletcher and a rumour was spread that a tiger killed Buxi. Fletcher saluted Buxi for his heroism and bravery to protect his motherland.

Director’s Note

The play is based on the hero of Paika rebellion, Bidyadhar Bhramarabara Rai. He is popularly known as ‘Buxi Jagabandhu’. With the support of common people, he became the leader of the first rebellion of the Paika (Soldiers of Odisha) against the British Rule. I thought of doing this play, written by Padmashree Manoranjan Das, on the occasion of 200th anniversary of Paika rebellion, to encourage the youth of Odisha by reminding them about Buxi’s heroism, love towards the nation, and the Paika rebellion.

The Director

Born on 28th January 1989 in Odisha, Debabrata Pattanayak is a Post Graduate in Drama (Direction) from Utkal University of Culture, Odisha. He has acted in about 30 Odia plays, written 7 plays and designed-directed 25 plays till now. Mr Pattanayak formed his own theatre group Dynamic Platform in 2015. He has undergone serious training under Rudra Prasad Sengupta, Satyabrat Rout and Subodh Patnaik. He has been recognised as a regular practitioner of contemporary theatre in Odisha. Presently he is serving as an Art Education Instructor (Theatre) in DIET, Puri, Odisha. He has been conducting theatre workshops with children and university students in different educational institutions.

The Playwright

Manoranjan Das was a contemporary Odia writer. He received many prestigious awards like Orissa Sahitya Academy Award (1964), Central Sahitya Academy Award (1971), Orissa Sangeet Natak Academy Award (1978), Central Sangeet Natak Academy Award (1981), Sarala Award (1989), Governor’s Plaque of Honour for play writing (1992), Padma Shri (2004), and Govt. of  India’s Senior Fellowship and Emeritus Fellowship, etc. He was a pioneer in the New Theatre movement in Odisha, had acted in stage plays and films, and written screen plays and Radio plays.

The Group

Being established as a contemporary theatre group in 2015, Dynamic Platform, has been producing plays since 2013. It was started with a mission to encourage the creative young talent by using theatre as a tool with systematic practice and training. The group has produced many significant plays and has participated in state as well as national theatre festivals such as International Peoples’ Theatre Festival of Natya Chetana, Panchamveda, and Arohan. The group also organises children’s theatre workshops to promote their creative potential and expression.

Cast & Credits

On Stage : Ch. Jayaprakash Das, Naveen kumar Parida, itendra Pattanaik, Pranjya Ranjan Khatua, Udit Guru Mohapatra, Subrat Kumar Dash, Dharmasis Behera, Rakesh Kumar Parida, Nilakantha Parida, Chiranjib Biswal, Ganesh Chandra Jena, Jyotirmayee Mishra, Hemanta Kumar Behera, Aditya Kumar Jena, Swarup Ranjan Das, Bhakti Ranjan Das, Saunika Sahu, Barshabasini Barik, Subhasmita Sing

Music: Pratap Chandra Rout

Set Design: Pranjyadutta Sahoo

Light Design: Bikas Kumar Pradhan

Costume: Prasana Kumar Satapathy

Make-up: Ramesh Chandra Sahu

Playwright: Manoranjan Das

Design & Direction: Debabrata Pattanayak

Manohar Khushalani

Manohar Khushalani

Prof. Manohar Khushalani is a former Visiting Faculty at Indraprastha Institute of Information Technology, Delhi. The courses he taught were: Animation & Graphics, Non-Linear Editing for Film and Radio and Theatre Appreciation.  He has won a total of nine Excellence in Teaching awards for all the courses he has taught at IIITD Earlier he retired from Government of India as Director Environment Management, Central Water Commission and held many senior positions in the Government Based on a Belief that Culture and Environment are the two keys to global sustainability , Manohar Khushalani has launched two portals: A Portal on Environment and Water called One Vorld at url: and two Ezines on Culture called Stage Buzz at url: He has taught extensively in varied subjects such as Dam Safety, Instrumentation, CAD, IT, Animation, Theatre, Newspaper Editing. He has conducted Courses on Environment Management, Water Shed Development, Team Building and Personality Development. He was an Expert Member of Prasar Bharti’s Committee for Grading & Short listing Films for Telecast on all channels of Doordarshan.  He is a Radio Anchor for All India Radio and has moderated several programs for the Rajdhani Channel He is a well-known Theatre Actor/Director and Critic, has been involved in theatre since 1977. He has worked as an actor in over 50 plays with almost every leading director/Actor in the Country including Badal Sircar, Feisal Alkazi, Amal Allana, M.K. Raina, Anuradha Kapoor, Maya Rao, Manohar Singh, Prasanna, Rati Bartholomew and Sushmita Mukherji. He has been active in the social sector as a street theatre activist. As a member of Workshop Theatre, Theatre Union and Prayog, Khushalani has participated in street plays taking up major social issues such as dowry, bride burning, Sati, banned medicinal drugs and communalism. Dario Fo’s Accidental Death of an Anarchist and Can’t Pay Won’t Pay, both directed by him, received rave notices from critics and audiences alike. Other plays directed by him include Badal Sircar’s, Sagina Mahato and Boris Vian’s Empire Builders for Ruchika Theatre Group. Khushalani has also acted in a few films such as Sudhir Mishra's Hazaron Khwaishen Aisi , Shoojit Sircar’s Madras Café and Pradeep Krishan's Annie Gives Those Ones. He is an Animator & Graphics Designer and has directed a number of documentaries. He also held a number of Honorary positions and was President of North India Films Association, He was the Chairman of  Jury for UGC CEC Educational Films Competition and has been on their Preview Committee since last many years. He was on the preview committee of Door Darshan Channel 3, was a visiting Professor at National School of Drama, New Delhi, and Film & Television Institute of India, Pune, AJKMCRR, Jamia Milia Islamia and Professor in Media at FICT, Delhi  He has judged a large number of Drama Competitions and conducted a number of Theatre / Management Games Workshops with Institutions such as AIIMS, NTPC, CWPRS, NWA, Karve Nari Prakshishan Sansthan, FICT, IIT, MAMC, Gargi College, KNC, Tagore International School and Vivekananda School. He is a Theatre Critic for IIC Diary, has also been a Columnist with Midday and Pioneer Daily and wrote Column's Called Culture Cocktail and Footlights Respectively. He was also the Guest Editor for an issue on Folk Theatre of ICCR Journal Horizons. He has written for Times of Indian, Hindustan Times, Blitz, Hard News, Hindu Business Line, Theatre India & Art Times. He has designed dams and hydraulic structures for the Government. He is a programmer and has developed Engineering design software in Fortran. He is a co-author of Irrigation Practice & Design (Vol 1 to5 - 1500 pages) published by Oxford & IBH and sponsored by National Book Trust. He has been a Director, Environment and Sociology, at the National Water Academy, Khadakwasla and Director, Environment Management Directorate, Central Water Commission and Member Secretary, National Environmental Monitoring Committee for River Valley Projects. He was also Director of Instrumentation Directorate in the Dam Safety Organisation. He was Chief General Manager and Head of Water Resources at Scott Wilson and is an accredited consultant with numerous other organizations He is a Delhi Public School, BITS Pilani, IIT Delhi and FTI Pune Alumini. He was also the President of BITS Pilani Alumni Association, Pune.

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