A doyen of children’s literature, Nadiya Bihari Mohanty has left behind a legacy of tales. He tested positive for COVID-19 and has passed away at the age of 90, while admitted in a private hospital.
He is one of the most distinguished writers for children and will always be remembered for his flawless and engrossing masterpieces.
Nadiya Bihari Mohanty was born on November 15, 1931 at Kaupada in Kendrapara district of Odisha. He graduated from Ravenshaw College and completed his law degree, both LLB and LLM, in later years. He belonged to a family having a strong presence in law, his father (Ram Chandra Mohanty) being an eminent lawyer.
Mohanty has written many plays for children before entering the radio world, his first being “Macha O Gacha” which he wrote for a school drama. This turned into an opportunity for him.
Mohanty was not only a writer but also a popular radio presenter.
His first job was at AIR, Cuttack as a presenter. ‘Sishu Sankara’, the popular radio programme that aired from All India Radio, Cuttack in 1960s gained him much popularity.
He was popularly known as ‘Bada Bhai’ (big brother) in all Odia homes, and was called the same by the children.
Besides, he has scripted more than 30 children books and has set a milestone in the field of child literature.
Some of his notable books are ‘Sani Sabhapati chhapan mantri’, ‘Hatahatta kala panasa katha’, ‘Khiri khechedi’, ‘Cha pahadare chakadhi’, ‘Rasta Rok’, ‘Sadu ra sagadi’, and many more. These books were a perfect amalgamation of prose and poetry that attracted children.
Nadiya Bihari Mohanty was conferred with the prestigious Sahitya Akademi award in the category of Bal Sahitya in the year 2013. This was a lifetime contribution award in the field of children’s literature.