Gajapati Maharaja Krushna Chandra Dev (1892-1974) was an educationist, freedom fighter, and a social reformer who had espoused the cause of the poor and downtrodden. He was born in the royal family of Paralakhemundi, the dynasty that belonged to the Ganga Dynasty of Puri. After completing his education, he was sworn in as the king of Paralakhemundi in 1913. He played an active role in uniting the scattered Oriya community and was the organizer of the 10th Utkal Sammilani at Paralakhemundi. He took part in the Round Table Conference held in 1931 and 1933 and placed a demand for the creation of a separate state of Orissa.
After Orissa was granted separate statehood in 1936, Krushna Chandra Dev was twice elected as the Prime Minister of the state. Utkal University, Medical College, Orissa High Court, and the Agricultural Research Center took shape during his rein. He adored the Oriya literature and the artworks of Orissa and was instrumental in establishing a permanent theatre at Paralakhemundi for promoting cultural activities. He also played an important role in the agricultural development of the state.
He will be remembered as the architect of modern Orissa who had revolutionized the social and economic fiber of the state.