August 09, 2020
Do you believe that even during this traumatic pandemic someone is all ears to the grievances of commoners? Politicians reaching out to their targeted voter base ahead of elections is a banal spectacle. The reasons are patently obvious. But finding a real Good Samaritan during this unforeseen crisis is akin to looking for a pin in a haystack.
Yes, at the heart of silver city Cuttack, a flamboyant industrialist attends patiently to grievances from the early morning. He hears out the woes of slum dwellers. Each day, around 40 people pour out their agony before this self made business magnate at his ancestral house.
And, Mahimananda Mishra, obliges them with financial assistance for a bevvy of their personal needs ranging from marriage to healthcare and supporting higher education goals for their children.
Whenever we think of an industrialist’s lifestyle, the image that conjures up is a lavish spectacle- one of swanky offices, plush bungalows, terraced gardens, expensive limousines and every creature comfort one can dream of. If an industrialist has such a cornucopia of wealth, why doesn’t he do his bit to help the poor and dispossessed?
Why can’t he turn his eyes to develop the periphery and set right the inequities created by the rich-poor divide? Fortunately, the earth has gleaming examples of some kind-hearted wealth creators who have donated aplenty.
Bill Gates and Azim Hasham Premji stand out as exceptionally exceptional. But why aren’t other opulent business owners taking the cues? We are doomed in a country where barely one per cent of the population has wrested more than 90 per cent of the wealth. This lopsided phenomenon does not help India’s avowed march towards a sustainable trillion-dollar economy.
But as Odias, if we look in our backyard, our hearts swell with pride. Mahimananda Mishra owns a business conglomerate with a valuation in upwards of Rs 10,000 crore with verticals ranging from shipping to ports and hospitality. He employs 10,000 people, a resounding 90 per cent of them being Odias. Yet this sprawling business empire has not taken away a shred from his social commitments.
An ardent believer in Lord Jagannath and the incredible shrine, Mishra admits that he has achieved it all due to the blessings of the supreme lord. He genuflects to the Lord for endowing him with the strength to shoulder big responsibilities. The OSL Group of Companies founded by him is his family. He gives away a sizeable portion of his wealth to CSR activities. More power to his tribe!
Written By Dibyajit Sahu
Image Source: Google
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