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© Susanta Nayak


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Padmavati or Padmavat. The whole population of India is discussing the about the film. But I am going to write another Padmavati associated with Odisha. She was Queen Padmavati, wife of King Purushottam Dev of Odisha. The Padmavati episode or Kanchi Abhiyan legend is a romantic episode among the people of Odisha till to-day. Many scholars have found truth with this legend also.

It was a period in the 15th Century.King Purusottama wanted to marry Padmavati, the daughter of the ruler of Kanchi. He visited the King of Kanchi and got consent for the marriage with Padmavati from her father.

The ruler of Kanchi on the invitation of King Purusottama visited Puri and witnessed the car festival. As per tradition, King Purushottam used to sweep with golden broom before Lords on their chariots. This observation of Kanchi led to denial of marriage proposal of his daughter with the Puri King. This infuriated Purusottamadeva who led an army to Kanchi but was defeated at the hands of Kanchi Army. This led the king to fall at the feet of Lord Jagannath. Lord told him in a dream to march towards the Kanchi for the second time and in that march, success was him only. With blessing of Lord Jagannath enthusiasm, Purusottamadeva marched again towards the south.

While proceeding with army march, he had to take a halt on the bank of Chilka lake. He knew from a milk-maid, Manika that two young soldiers of the king, one dark and the other fair complexioned, riding black and white horses respectively ate all the curd from her pot and presented a ring to her. Manik showed the ring to the king and asked for money.

King Purusottama looked at the ring and knew that it was of Lord Jagannath. He was assured himself that the win was with him.

As is apparent, the king of Kanchi was defeated and Purusottama forcibly brought Padmavati to Odisha. He instructed his minister that the princess Padmavati would be given in marriage to a chandal (sweeper) so that his anger would be pacified. The clever minister of the king waited for an appropriate opportunity. At the time of the car festival, Padmavati garlanded Purusottamadeva by instruction of the minister, when the king was performing the work of aChandala i.e. Chhera Prahara. The king had no alternative but to accept Padmavati as his queen. All is well that ends well.

It is believed that Purushattam reigned over his kingdom for a long period. 

historical king queen

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