Sunday 19 November 2017

The Rosogolla Race: Odisha’s Inaction, West Bengal’s Gain

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How many of us know that the Gobindobhog rice, grown in West Bengal for the past 300 years in Bardhaman district, got the Geographical Indication (GI) status in August 2017? 
Or that two other Bengali sweets- Bardhaman Sitabhog and Bardhaman Mihidana also got the GI tag this year? Did the media and state’s CM share the above “sweet news” so competitively?
But, notice the GI tag victory claim for "Banglar Rasogolla" ("Bengal's Rasogolla or Rasogolla of Bengal") that has a Banglar history of just 149 years (1868-2017) !
In stark contrast, Odisha's Jagannath Temple in Puri has an 800 years old cultural association with Rasagola.
Even now Rasagola is offered as bhog during Niladri Bije, the last day of Ratha Jatra.
As per tradition, Niladri Bije is the only day when Rasagola is offered as bhog to Lord Jagannath.
Niladri Bije is celebrated as #RasagolaDibasa.

On the last day of Ratha Jatra, Lord Jagannath offers Rasagola to pacify MaaLakshmi, who is angry as He hadn't taken Her along.
Despite having 150 pages documentary and historical proof of Rasagola's Odisha origin, it is surprising how and why the Odisha Govt. did not even apply for GI or raise any objection to “Banglar Rasogolla”. 
Rasagola mentioned with other Odia sweets in the 15th Century Dandi Ramayana
The July 2016 Rasagola report facts should come to light for the world to know the real birthplace of the Rasagola. The truth will be out one day.
Why did the Odisha Govt. delay the process?

Do read my entire article- The Rosogolla Race: Odisha’s Inaction, West Bengal’s Gain published in The Quint for more.
What is your take on the Rasagola issue? Do share your views in the comments below.


  1. Hey, I didn’t get why is there competition for everything? As I remember, both Bihar and Odisha were a part of Bengal itself. Now I have a similar comparison: what we call Indus Valley Civilization or Sindhu Ghati Sabhyata in Hindi was an ancient civilization of India but today, Sindh is in Pakistan then what should it be called ancient civilization of Pakistan?

    In my opinion, both Odisha and Bengal should have equal right on Rasogolla. In fact, I have a suggestion to stop the fight between Odisha and Bengal over Rasogolla and the solution is to declare it the sweet dish of Undivided Bengal. What do you say?

    1. Yes, even I am wondering why Bengal, the rest of India and the world is unwilling to accept the fact about Rasagola's Odisha origin and association with Puri Lord Jagannath Temple where it existed much before Kolkata city came in existence :)
      Rasagola is older than its 1868 "invention in Kolkata".

      You can check out the paper-
      Rasagola: The Ritual Offering of Odisha By Asit Mohanty
      It may be remembered that first it was the sweet dish of the Lord.
      Now the whole world enjoys it.

    2. Hmm…I tried to give it a broader prospect by attributing Rasogolla to Undivided Bengal so that we Biharies could also take some credit of it. :D

      On a serious note, the logic given in the link also has flaws. I don’t want to go when and where the word chhena origins. My argument is very simple, and it acknowledges the fact that Rasogolla originated in Puri but it also acknowledges the fact that before 1912, Puri was in Bengal, and during 1912 to 1936, it was in Bihar and Orissa Province. It is also possible that someday due to further division Puri may not be a part of Odisha. So, I didn’t get the concept of ‘GI’ thing. For me, it’s just another tool to divide people – divide and rule.

      Now, on a lighter note, I don’t care whether it’s of Bengal or Odisha. I love it and I will continue to love it. Hum aam khane me viswas rakhte hain guthli ginne me nahi.

      By the way, Anita, the effort you put in this article by collecting and mentioning all the relevant references with hyperlinks is commendable. Kudos (Y)

    3. At first, Kalinga kingdom comprised of a large part. When I had visited Nepal, they introduced me as a guest from "Kalinga" :)
      But, no matter what regions came up later, similar rituals have been followed in the Lord Jagannath Temple Puri from 12th Century Rasagola evidence is available in Odia Ramayana of late 15th Century.
      Odisha must earn her deserving due- The credit for Rasagola and Odisha must be recognized as its place of origin.

      The Rasagola article with loads of references is the result of hardwork and research of Sahitya Akademi winning cultural-writer and scholar, Shri Asit Mohanty.

  2. Sad part is that we don't want to accept history as it is. We are happy dividing ourselves for cheap politics. Most of the issues including fight over rivers like Kaveri, Mahadayi would be solved if we unite as Indians. I don't understand why we play unhealthily with our own people?

    1. True Sindhu. Many issues are politicized for vested interests.
      We pray for better judgment and understanding.
      Hope there's rational thinking and truth is recognized.

  3. Hi Anita,

    I have been following your blog from quite sometime and I totally love your posts.
    I have nominated you for the Black and White Challenge ( link:

    I do hope that you would participate in it.

    1. Thanks for your nice words and for nominating me for the Challenge :) Will check it out.

  4. Great article, Thanks for your nice data, the content is quiet attention-grabbing. i'll be expecting your next post.

    1. Thank you so much for your nice words.
      The next posts are ready :)

  5. Good Article Anita !! I dont know why we Indians keep fighting.. Just enjoy the different varieties of Rasogulla !!
    Why dont these people fight against poverty or equality !!! Its a political gimmic

    1. Thanks for sharing your views, Sneh.
      In our India, we get to enjoy many varieties of not only Rasagola but other items also viz. Vada, Dal etc. (list can go on & on)
      This is not simply a fight for a sweet.
      It is just to let everyone know about the true origin and the reality that most are ignoring/hiding. I have shared my views here-
      Rasagola Project

      Agree with your observation about equality & poverty.
      United efforts can help attend & solve such pressing issues.


Your words mean a lot to me.

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