Chariot Festival: Lords, Odissi & ‘Adruta’


By Sambit Pradhan

HOUSTON: A year short of a milestone (a decade), the preparation for 9th Houston Rath Yatra is in full swing by Orissa Culture Center(OCC)! Like every other year, OCC presents a magnificent cultural extravaganza this year, themed ‘Nrityanjali’. Keeping in mind of the dance appreciative audience of our city, we have invited two amazing Odissi dance groups, ‘Adruta’ and ‘Ananta’.

‘Adruta’ is a group of seven talented young girls who are mostly in their teens, is highly applauded for consistent performances on Door Darshan as well as at state, national and international level festivals. The danseuses have one thing in common besides their exceptional dance talent – they are abandoned by their biological parents but ‘adruta’ (accepted in Oriya) as daughters by a noble soul, Dr. Aditya Mohanty, a Professor in Philosophy in Utkal University, Orissa and Founder of Adruta Children Home.

Adruta Children Home, a unit of RAWA academy, was founded in 1998 by Dr. Aditya Mohanty, with the adoption of a baby girl named Purnima. Adruta has carved a unique name and niche for itself by adopting and caring for the abandoned and orphaned girl children. The organization currently takes care of more than 400 children!

Houston Rath Yatra Media Team invited Dr. Aditya Mohanty to share a few of his views with our readers.

HRY: Could you tell us your view of Adruta?

Dr. Mohanty: Adruta Children Home is a pioneering innovative venture to rehabilitate the abandoned, unclaimed, parentless and destitute children in providing them a conducive environment so that there is optimal expression of their innate potentiality and they grow into prized assets of the social mainstream.

HRY:  What inspired you to set up Adruta?

Dr. Mohanty:  It is nothing but sheer inner calling on part of some likeminded individuals which goaded us to address the cause of the children who live choice-less, voice-less, underfed, malnourished, uncared for, when most of them grow into problem individuals of the society, at large.

HRY: What gave you strength to go through the ups and downs through the years?

Dr. Mohanty: It is the consuming passion to address the cause of such children in distress and destitution which makes the journey so very fulfilling and enduring. As a result, the challenges on the way turn out to be opportunities maturing our perception of reality which lends strength and inspiration to address the odds and obstacles.

HRY:  Do you have any special words for our readers?

Dr. Mohanty: In endeavoring to make difference to the children in need of care and protection we make a great difference to ourselves unawares. One who renders Service without any ulterior motive is the first beneficiary of Service.

Thank you Dr. Mohanty for your time and we are looking forward to a great performance on July 09.

Stay tuned for ‘Ananta’ and other cultural segments!

Orissa Culture Center (OCC) and Sri Sita Ram Foundation would like to invite all our readers to the 9th Houston Rath Yatra, which will be held this year at India House, 8888 W Bellfort Blvd., Houston, TX 77031.

For information, please visit or call 832-225-2376 or e-mail at You may connect on