The Bilung village in Sambalpur district has been renamed as Rangabati Bilung, in recognition of the popular Odia folk song Rangabati and its lyricist Mitrabhanu Gauntia, who is the native of the village.

Odisha’s Revenue and Disaster Management department said in a notification: “Recognising the popularity of the famous folk song “Rangabati” of Odisha, the State Government on obtaining No Objection Certificate from Ministry of Home Affairs CS Division/ M&G Section, Government of India, New Delhi in their letter No. 11/23/2019-M&G dated 03.07.2020 read with Ministry of Science and Technology Letter No. F.No.SM/28/19/2019 dated 20.01.2010 do hereby rename “Bilung” as “Rangabati ‘Hung” under Bamra Tahasil of Sambalpur District in the State of Odisha as specified in Column(3) of the schedule below with the name as mentioned against Column-4, 5 & 6 with effect from the date of publication of this Notification in the Odisha Gazette.”

For the uninitiated, Rangabati is a hit Sambalpuri folk song that was first recorded for the All India Radio in 1975. A couple of years later, the copy of the song was recorded for a disc in the Indian Record Company, Kolkata.

The evergreen hit song was penned by 77-year-old Gauntia, who was selected for the Padma Shri this year. The veteran lyricist was earlier bestowed with the Odisha State Sangeet Natak Academy Award and Akashvani National Award.