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Mamata Banerjee plans tourism circuit around Mangal Pandey

There will be a perpetual flame such as the Amar Jawan Jyoti at India Gate.

kolkata Updated: May 30, 2017 16:28 IST
Snigdhendu Bhattacharya
Snigdhendu Bhattacharya
Hindustan Times
Mamata Banerjee,Mangal Pandey,Barrackpore
The death of Mangal Pandey, a sepoy in the 34th Bengal Native Infantry regiment of the British East India Company, on April 8, 1857 triggered India’s first war of Independence.(Facebook)

West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee on Tuesday announced a tourism circuit around Mangal Pandey, whose death on April 8, 1857 triggered India's first war of Independence.

Pandey incited fellow Indian soldiers to attack British officers and himself injured two British officers on March 29, 1857. He was arrested and hanged on April 8, 1857, 10 days before schedule.

The Bengal chief minister announced on Tuesday that the highlight of the circuit will be a perpetual flame like the Amar Jawan Jyoti at India Gate in Delhi.

“The perpetually burning flame styled as Amar Jawan Jyoti in New Delhi will be named Uthsa Dhara. This was the starting point of India’s first war of Independence and Mangal Pandey was the country’s first martyr,” she said while chairing an administrative meeting at Barrackpore in North 24 Parganas district.

Read: Mangal Pandey desecrated

Barrackpore, on the eastern banks of river Hooghly about 30 kilometres from Kolkata, was the seat of the 34th regiment of Bengal Native Infantry of the British East India Company that was disbanded in the aftermath of Pandey’s rebellion.

The film on Mangal Pandey starring Aamir Khan had a budget of more than Rs 35 crore in 2005 and was one of the most expensive films attempted by Bollywood. ( HT Photo )

“Barrackpore’s role in the 1857 revolt is part of heritage and a tourism circuit will be developed around that heritage,” she said. She also announced a grant of Rs 5 crore from the state’s urban development department.

Read: Mangal Pandey draws huge crowds at FFII

The first British barrack in India was built in Barrackpore in 1772. After the British crown assumed direct control of India, a sprawling Government House was built in Barrackpore to provide the viceroy with a suburban residence. Barrackpore is located on banks of the river.

Pandey’s death created huge repercussions among Indian soldiers in other parts of the country. It is regarded to have played a key role in the spread of the revolt.

Pandey’s bravery inspired legends for years. In 2005, Amir Khan played his role in the Ketan Mehta-directed Mangal Pandey: The Rising, a biopic on Pandey.

First Published: May 30, 2017 16:28 IST