In an Interview with Dr. Puspalata Rath

by ABINASH SAHU
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Dr. Puspalata Rath is currently working as a lecturer in Odia in Indipur, Dhenkanal. She is a Member of Odisha Sahitya Academy ( Finance Committee). She has published many articles, poems and stories. She has also authored many books. The Interview Times had a conversation with her, below are the answers she responded to the questions asked – Q1- What you like more, small stories or poems and why ?

Answer – I like all types of basic literature, but if you ask me more, then my answer would be poems, because in other literature like short stories, novels, articles the author tells briefly but in poems poet say his/her thoughts, emotions which matters symbolically. So that, one can think about what he/she read. Readers do some mental exercise to reach near the meaning of the poem. In poem a reader have to do home work to understand a poem. Secondly the wording composition attracts me and my heart, vibrate my body and give me a complete pleasant when I recite a good poem, reached by a new truth of the poet’s philosophy.

Q2- Can you please share your experience/how did you feel after you were choosed as a member of odia sahitya academy?

Answer – When the list of Odisha Sahitya Academy Members came out, and I got calls from my well wishers, I felt happy. That moment was very precious for me. Whenever I am depressed by any matter, I just remember the happy moments of my life and come from that stage and luckily this matter is one of them. Odisha Sahitya Academy is a recognition for me. I am proud that I am a part of that.Q3- From where did you source inspiration or motivation/ ideas to write?

Answer – Inspiration, motivation words are unknown to me, when I was inspired and motivated, they are my teachers. My Hindi teacher gave me an essay to write in class 8th and that essay was written by me about 20-25 pages, he read patiently and told me that if you write such type, you will fail in the exam. From that day he noticed me and guide me how to write in exam papers but also praise me that time and told me that think, do, write, but be as time needs. Then in +2 time my educator, another father like person in my life, he changed the route of my life. He transferred at +2 second year to Balasore teacher’s training college but we were in touch through letters. He didn’t forget to give answers. When I got admitted in +3 with political science honors, he wrote me to keep Odia honors. Though I know that my brothers, sisters will scold me immediately for changing the honors. Luckily at that time students didn’t prefer to take odia honors rather they study with pass subjects without honors, therefore I could smoothly got Odia honours. For years I didn’t informed my family about this, as a literature student my weakness towards literature developed day by day.

Q4- What are your future plannings?

Answer – I know future is uncertain but now I have so many thoughts, I want to share with people.

Q5- Do you have the interest for Literature from Childhood or it developed later?

Answer – I couldn’t remember that from childhood I had interest or not, but in primary school we were issued library books, and instructed to return those books in few days, if we didn’t return that in time, we have to give penalties. The teacher who was in library charge examined us that whether we have read that book or not. When I was in class 3, villagers scold my class teacher for not teaching the students properly, villagers didn’t know the real aim. He didn’t touch the text book the whole day from 10-30 am to 4-00 pm but just tell stories, play with students, sometimes take the students to the garden of the school. Whenever I remember those days I just feel that what an ideal teacher he was, from him I got interest to read more and more stories.Q6- Can you please share us about how your first work published and what we’re the hard work you did for that?

Answer – As a writer my first work was a Lalita Nirbandha, Kala Chhatri( as student) which was published in 1992 in yearly magazine of Dhenkanal women’s college. My seniors praised me a lot, after that so many poems, articles, short stories published by many reputed magazines. My first book was ” A Pathagami ra Chinhapatha” which was published by Bijayeeni publication house. I just work for that, but not hard work. I don’t take any hardship in my life. Just doing my work and walking forward in life.

Photo Credits – Dr. Puspalata Rath

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