Paradeep is known for its huge port that has been handling more than thousands of million tonnes of cargo every year – from iron ore to crude oil. But fewer people know that before transforming to the 8th major port in the country, Paradeep port used to be a swamp crawling with mangroves and bushes.
Here are few historical facts that date back to the early 1960’s that tell about some of the lesser-known facts about the Paradeep port:
The plot of land on which the port is built was a mangrove swamp until 1948 when the Port Committee of the Government of India decided that there is the requirement of a port that connected Vishakhapatnam and Calcutta since the partition separated Dhaka from India.
Though it was proposed by the Central Water & Power Commission who proposed a port anywhere between Kolkata and Vishakhapatnam in 1950, it was actually Biju Patnaik the then chief minister of Odisha who made all things right for construction of it in Paradip on River Mahanadi.
On 12th March, 1966 INS ‘Investigator’ had its first maiden berthing in the Paradeep port which was declared open by Late Peter Stambolic, then Prime Minister of Yugoslavia.
The Indian Government declared the Paradeep port as the eighth major port of India on 18th April 1966 making it the first major port in the East Coast commissioned after independence.
Currently, Paradeep port is one of the busiest ports in the Indian seaboard with annual cargo tonnage of over 79 million tonnes.