Padma Shri awardee and noted social activist D Prakash Rao died on Wednesday at the SCB Medical College Hospital in Cuttack. He was 63. Mr Rao succumbed to a brain stroke at 4.15 pm, SCB Medical College Hospital Emergency Officer B N Mohaparan said.
The hospital official said Rao was admitted after he tested positive for COVID-19, but had later recovered from the disease. However, his condition worsened after he developed certain neurological ailments. Mr Rao, a Padma Shri, was known for his contribution towards imparting education to slum and orphan children in Cuttack. The tea seller of Cuttack had spent his entire earning to educate slum children. Rao started the school ‘Asha O Ashwasana’ in Buxi Bazaar area in 2000 to provide free education to slums kids when he saw kids in his neighbourhood taking to petty crimes. Apart from his school, Rao was also a well-known blood donor. He was conferred with the prestigious Padma Shri award in 2019 for his contribution towards boosting the value of education among slum kids in Cuttack. Prime Minister Narendra Modi expressed his condolence on the demise of Rao. The Chief Minister’s Office informed that the mortal remains will be cremated with full state honours.