The Odia Wikipedia turned 14 this 3rd and the contributor community have gathered in the city for a two-day long event to celebrate the anniversary. The Odia Wikipedia was started as one of the first four Indian language Wikipedias along with Assamese, Malayalam and Punjabi Wikipedia in 2002, a year after the English Wikipedia was made live.
The project was quite dormant for more than nine years and it got revived by a group of
volunteer editors in Bangalore during 2011. Then the project became much of a household
name when more Odia speakers living in Odisha and outside joined started writing and
editing articles of several different subject areas. Odia Wikipedia is part of the 292
language Wikipedia family and a larger global family of hundreds of other free knowledge
projects that are collectively known as Wikimedia projects.
“Odia Wikipedia is officially available online at https://or.wikipedia.org and is free for
anyone to create articles on notable topics, and edit and enhance those articles”, says
Mrutyunjaya Kar, one of the administrators of the project. Aliva Sahu, one of the active
editors, shares, “being a student of Odia-language I was seeking information on musical
instruments and could not find much. So I started translating from English and now it is
one of the longest articles on Odia Wikipedia.” Explaining about the two-day long capacity
building sessions, Jnanaranjan Sahu, a session coordinator and a long time editor says,
“this event is bringing most of the active contributors under one roof as we are working
online. This event will help us learn from each other and impart knowledge so that
everyone can go back and use them”. “We have several subject areas covered on Odia
Wikipedia – from the elaborate rituals of Jagannatha temple to medical science.
Interestingly, almost all the articles on medical science are written by a retired assistant
professor Dr. Subas Chandra Rout and needless to say those articles are of really high
quality”, explains Pritiranjan Tripathy, an editor who is based in Kolkata. There was
a public gathering on the 5th at the Institute on Management of Agricultural Extension
(IMAGE), Siripur, Bhubaneswar.