When the duty calls, this policeman cycles down to his assigned place of traffic signal and takes his position. Not in the signal post meant to offer shades and protection from scorching heat of summer or drizzling rains of the season, but in the middle of traffic crossing, on the road, whistling and dancing in-between the sea of commuters. Think he is a mad traffic cop? Oh, no, he is the one who wants smile on duty and make people (especially kids) smile to his dancing moves and the continuous rhythm of whistle while signalling Stop and Go. He is none other than the renowned ‘Dancing Cop of Bhubaneswar’ – Benudhar Sahoo, a home guard by position.
“When I am on duty, I usually put behind all my problems and worries. The only thing in my mind at that time remains is to see people happy when I signal them to cross the road or stop. It gives me immense pleasure to see people happily obliging traffic rules while I signal them in the busy road-crossings. I feel pain with swift dance moves and hand movements, but at the end of the day, I forget them all and only remember those smiling faces of people asking me “Benu Bhai, Bhala Acha? (Benu Bhai, How are you?).” – says Benudhar (fondly known as Benu Bhai to many), the Dancing Cop.
Continuing the saga of doing something different and innovative every year, 22 Bikes ideated the thought of spending an evening with dinner honouring the dedication and passion of this Dancing Cop of Bhubaneswar. The event marked as “Dinner with your Dancing Cop” was planned in association with “Odisha Hotel” and “Pinnacle HR Pvt Ltd.”. The entire family of this unique personality and the celebrity cop from Bhubaneswar was invited to join with a flock of people from all cross-sections of the society and dine together at Odisha Hotel, Patia Square, Bhubaneswar while interacting across the table with Benudhar. Also a small charity was organized in this evening to felicitate Benu Bhai, whose monthly income is merely Rs.6600/- (even in 2017!).
A total of 57 persons joined this unique of celebration of Republic Day with Benu Bhai and his family with two of his daughters. He also cut a cake to mark 68th Republic Day of India. He interacted with the august gathering and shared his life story amidst a lot of happy moments.
“Some souls are destined just to bring a smile on others’ face; his is one of them. He makes me smile genuinely every time I cross him.” – says Santosh Srinivas, an athlete and State level Table Tennis Player on this occasion.
“It’s not always about cycling; we also plan to do something different that can mark an impact on general people. Last year we have donated a sports bicycle to one of the budding cyclists of Bhubaneswar, who belong to the economically down-trodden community. This year we planned this event to felicitate this living legend, Benu Bhai, who makes paths safe with his unique dancing way of traffic control. We also have plans to bring more innovations along with cycling in Bhubaneswar.” – says Ajay, the owner of 22 Bikes and innovator of this noble concept.
The host of the evening, Odisha Hotels is famous for its authentic Odia Cuisines (Khanti Odia Khadya) and has been credited for introducing the world famous “Dahi Pakhala” (Watered Rice with yogurt) as a dish on menu in restaurants and hotels. Following its years-old tradition it is still serving the people with its genuine cuisines in pure Odia style preparations.
Author : Mr. Santosh Kumar Rout ( Santosh Kumar is an digital marketing expert by profession and cyclist by passion. Always ready to spend time with friends.At 22Bikes he networks with young cyclists that build a healthy nation.)