Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Odisha IAS Arvind Padhee turns a smart salesman to package his state. How?

MEET this officer who describes himself a “born optimist”. And on April 23, this is what he tweeted: “Am now in one of the hottest places in #Odisha this summer. The warmth n 'no-double speak' attitude of d 'Samalpurias' give pure delight. :).” Arvind Padhee, who is a 1996 batch Odisha cadre IAS officer and secretary to the state’s tourism and culture department, passionately uses his social media handles to promote…the state of Odisha and its tourism, something that is unusual of a typical bureaucrat. Like a street-smart salesman, Padhee in this tweet, made an attempt to woo tourists to enjoy Odisha summers!
In fact, Odisha for years has failed to package its beauty, mountains, serene lakes and frolicking rivers, and also a 400-km-long coastline to tourists because of lack of aggression in campaigns. While Kerala and now Gujarat have packaged their tourist hotspots in the most innovative manner, many other states including Odisha have been left behind.
So, will this secretary’s Twitter feed convince people to visit Odisha? First, let’s list some of his tweets. “Let’s resolve on #UtkalaDibasa to contribute our own share to make #Odisha a happening state,” Padhee tweeted. Utkala Dibasa or Odisha Day is celebrated every year on April 1 in memory of the formation of Odisha as a separate province on that day, way back in 1936. And after a beautiful cultural evening, the officer thanked the audience, also in Twitter. “Cultural programs in the State level Utkal Divas celebrations last evening were superb. Thank d distinctive audience.”
With just 1650 followers, Padhee’s Twitter handle can’t be described as a popular one, but his contents are typical social media type, and hence are appealing. “The foyer/lobby leading to my office chamber in Culture Department in #Odisha Secretariat gets an artistic touch. :),” he tweets after posting the photo of the artwork, and not forgetting to hashtag Odisha. 
In this ongoing election, many a babu posts his selfie in twitter or WhatsApp showing the indelible ink being applied on the left hand forefinger. Is babudom getting changed? Yes, and they are getting “social” too.


  1. Dr. Arvind Padhee is a workaholic,dynamic,optimist officer with pro-people attitude. He always thinks new & trying best in his work. I remembered that day when Odisha Govt appointed him as Secretary,Culture & Tourism dept. I asked him Is govt. confined you in a low-profile dept ? He replied that No way, there is enough to do. I will explore the possibilities & you will see soon the result . This is Dr. Padhee. I am a great follower of this great man.

    Prakash Sethi

  2. He can be a change maker with deep focus on his responsibility for #Odisha.
    Thank you very much for all support possible at ISF14.
    Hope to meet you again for doing much better stuffs on surf tourism in Odisha.
    you are different:).

    1. Hope Mr.Padhee ensures the marketing for Surf Fest 2015 is done much in advance...so that more tourists can come in! The following brilliants festivals of Odisha need a planned social media campaign + print & tv campaign + materials placed in every airport & railway station:
      a) Sand Art Festival
      b) Konark Festival
      c) Surf Festival
      & of course all our brilliant tourists places mst b regularly highlighted. @odisha_tourism handle has to be far more pro-active. In FB also a quick revamp is needed, with engaged people handling it. This is a cheap yet effective way of reaching out 2 millions of potential tourists around the world.
      Most importantly: Nabakalebar Festival...for wich no buzz yet is seen... hopefully a coordinated media campaign will catapult Odisha tourism into limelight. 2014-15 is the best year for this by Lord Jagannath's grace. Hoping to see best action on ground + via well-planned campaign... :)