Memorial of Thomas Dean Pears
St. Stephen’s School, Dum Dum, Kolkata
Date: 17 August 1880 Time: 5:30 am Location: Belvedere
Two shots broke the silence of the monsoon morning at Alipore, on the southern fringes of Calcutta (now Kolkata), but these were not ordinary gun shots but shots of a duel.
The shots were part of the infamous duel between Warren Hastings and Phillip Francis.
Hasting was appointed the Govern General by the directors of the East India Company. The directors also appointed a council of four members who enjoyed equal powers in the board as the governor general. Philip Francis was one of the four councils and always went against Hastings.
A conflict regarding the war with the Marathas lead to the duel between the two. Thursday, August 17 was the chosen date, and Belvedere was to be the venue; the time chosen for the encounter was half past five in the morning.
Both stood behind the mark and at the counting of one, two and three both fired. Francis fired first and missed his target while Hastings’ fire found its mark on his opponent’s right arm. Francis staggered and while attempting to sit, fell on the ground crying out he was a “dead man”. He recuperated within few days and attended the Council where both were civil in behaviour.
Indentured Indian Labourers Memorial and Clock Tower
Kolkata Port Trust, Kidderpore, Kolkata
We are the forgotten children of mother India. Mauritius, Trinidad, Suriname, Guyana and Fiji celebrate Indian Arrival Day and have memorials for the Indian workers. But in India no one remembers them
David Sheoraj of Trinidad and Persons of Indian Origin (PIOs)
Fiji: 14 May, Mauritius: 2 Nov., Trinidad: 30 May, Guyana: 8 May, Suriname: 5 June, Jamaica: 10 May. These days are all national holidays in the respective countries and are known as the Indian Arrival Day.
Apeejay Kolkata Literary Festival (AKLF) 2017
Heritage Tour on the River Ganges
The Apeejay Kolkata Literary Festival (AKLF), created by the Oxford Bookstores, happens to be India’s only literary festival created by a bookstore. AKLF also happens to be the fist literary festival of Kolkata.
On 6 Jan 2017 the 8th edition of the Apeejay Kolkata Literary Festival (AKLF) kicked off with a Heritage Tour of the River Ganges. I was invited, along with a host of fellow travel bloggers, to attend the Heritage Cruise by Candid Communications, media partner of AKLF.
Bengali Literary Heritage Bus Tour
Apeejay Bangla Sahitya Utsav (ABSU) 2016
The second edition of the Apeejay Bangla Sahitya Utsav (ABSU) kicked off with the Bengali Literary Heritage Bus Tour, held on 16 Oct. 2016.
I was privileged enough to lead a group of about 60 eminent Kolkatans, including eminent writer and columnist Ranjan Bandhopadhyay, through the winding streets of north Kolkata past the houses of stalwarts of Bengali literature.
St. Stephen’s Church, Kidderpore, Kolkata
Church with a Rocket like Steeple
Also see: My compilation of Calcutta (Kolkata) Churches
The St. Stephen’s Church, located on the Diamond Harbour Road, and next to the St. Thomas School, it is best observed from the bridge over Adi Ganga (Tolly Nala) in Kiddrpore.
With its unique rocket like steeple the St. Stephen’s Church attracts the attention of even the casual passerby. Strangely the steeple was not meant to be designed like a rocket, in fact it was designed as a ship’s lantern.
Balu Ghat, Metiabruz, Kolkata
Suriname Memorial, a small non – descriptive memorial, on the banks of Hooghly River in Metiabruz and Garden Reach area was unveiled by the Union External Minister Sushma Swaraj on 7 Oct. 2015.
The Suriname Memorial may be new but India’s relationship with Suriname dates back to over almost 150 years. A joint initiative of India and Suriname government the memorial is built in honour of those Indian contract workers who migrated to Suriname, the small country located on the northeast Atlantic coast of South America, from 1873 to 1916.
Ambedkar Bhawan, Kankurgachhi, Kolkata
The country is full of rivers, channels, streams, swamps, marshes and morasses. Southern part of delta is still composed of hundreds of tiny islands. In such a land of waters boating is bound to be the principal means of all purpose of life.
The Boat Museum, the only one in its kind in the whole of India, is located at the Ambedkar Bhawan, Kankurgachhi, Kolkata.The Boat Museum was inaugurated in Jan. 2014.