Rising Indian badminton star Rutaparna Panda receives Odisha's Ekalabya Puraskar
Nurturing the dream to win the Ekalabya Puraskar someday, young badminton star Rutaparna Panda got conferred with the honor because of her on-court achievements.
Rising rapidly in the ranks, Indian badminton player Rutaparna Panda was honored with the 29th Ekalabya Puraskar being bestowed on her at an event at the Mayfair Convention Hotel in Bhubaneshwar, Odisha. The star shuttler received a handsome cash prize of Rs. 5 lakhs and a citation from the Governor Prof Ganeshi Lal of Odisha, as well. The event also saw Padma Shri Dilip Tirkey and BJP National Vice President, Chairperson of Ekalabya Puraskar Committee, and Trustee of Indian Metals Public Charitable Trust (IMPaCT) Baijayant Panda present at the event.
The Ekalabya Puraskar is a very prestigious award that recognizes young athletes from the State of Odisha for their brilliant achievements in their chosen field of sport in the preceding two years. In the roll of honor since 1993, the award is given by the Indian Metals Public Charitable Trust (IMPaCT), which forms the charitable wing of the IMFA group.
Not just Rutaparna Panda, two other athletes from Odisha - cyclist Swasti Singh and football player Pyari Xaxa also received cash prizes of Rs. 50,000 each and citations for their extraordinary feats in cycling and football.
Rutaparna is a familiar name on the Indian badminton circuit by now and her talent has been visible on the international scene as well - the Uber Cup outing being the most memorable one in recent memory where she played Women's Doubles with partner Tanisha Crasto.
Sharing her excitement, Rutaparna said, "It's a dream for every young sportsperson in Odisha to win the Ekalabya Puraskar. I am feeling very proud after being conferred with the prestigious award because I had been nurturing the dream of winning Ekalabya Puraskar since a long time. The award will motivate me to do well and bring laurels for India as well as Odisha," the 22-year-old shuttler mentioned at the event in Bhubaneshwar.
"Even after winning many accolades, whenever a sportsperson receives the Ekalabya Puraskar and says that he/she had a dream of winning the prestigious award, it validates the efforts we have been putting in to encourage young sportspersons from Odisha. In that light, I am fully confident that Rutaparna Panda, Swasti Singh and Pyari Xaxa will achieve a lot of success in coming years," conveyed Baijyanath Panda, as well.