Puppeteer Maguni Charan Kuanr to get Buddha Samman
STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE
Bhubaneswar, 14 February
Well-known puppeteer Mr Maguni Charan Kuanr will receive the prestigious “Buddha Samman” during the three-day Dhauli-Kalinga Mahotsav which is slated to kick off tomorrow.
“Every year an eminent art personality from the field of creative and performing art is conferred with the Samman which carries a citation, an angabastra and cash award of Rs  50,000. This year, the awarded will be bestowed on Mr Maguni Charan Kuanr for his significance contribution to his field,” said tourism director Mr Manoranjan Patnaik.
The coveted award, which was instituted by Odisha Dance Academy (ODA) six years ago, aimed at promoting and popularizing the teachings of Goutam Buddha and preaching the same through the festival.
Meanwhile, preparations are over for the three-day dance extravaganza which will be held at the foothills of Dhauli on the outskirts of Bhubaneswar. 
Dhauli Mahotsav, billed as one of the prime and noted festivals of Odisha, was conceptualized in 2003 to showcase best of classical and folk art forms of India at a sprawling stage at the foot of the heritage site Dhauli hill. It has curved a niche for itself in the cultural map of the country. The festival is aimed to create awareness of ancient Odishan culture, particularly to the young generation. Its objectives include preservation, promotion and popularization of our grand heritage at national and international level. Dhauli&’s rich historical and spiritual base forms the backdrop to this confluence of artistes of diverse disciplines in the spirit of cultural solidarity.
The Kalinga Mahotsav is being organised by the state tourism department since 2003 at the Dhauli Shanti Stupa.  Since last three years the government has decided to organize the festival in association with ODA, Bhubaneswar at the same venue. The objective is to preserve, promote and popularize the heritage at the national and international level.  With the Viswa Shanti Stupa at the backdrop, eminent dancers of India will harmonize the vigour of martial art with the peaceable sublimity of dance tradition through scintillating performances representing various martial art forms of the country and abroad.
Another significant objective is to create awareness among the youth, particularly the students about our cultural heritage and tradition and to inculcate the interest and involvement with our glorious art and culture by showcasing the rich tapestry of our performing arts and interactions with artistes.