Centre to celebrate 200 years of Odisha’s Paika Bidroha

The Centre will celebrate 200 years completion of Paika Bidroha, known to be the first freedom struggle of India, to commemorate the courageous uprising of soldiers led by Buxi Jagabandhu in Khordha district of Odisha against British in 1817.

Presenting the Union Budget 2017, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said, “200 years ago in 1817, a valiant uprising of soldiers led by Bakshi Jagabandhu took place in Khordha of Odisha. We will commemorate it appropriately.”

The outstanding Paika Rebellion better known as the ‘Paika Bidroha’ in Odisha under the leadership of Buxi Jagabandhu has a special place in the National history for being one of the earliest known revolt against the British rule in India. It is dated back to 1817, much before than the Sepoy Mutiny of 1857. A national level celebration for the rebellion has been announced under the budget today.

The Paikas were the traditional land-owning militia of Odisha and served as warriors. They revolted against the British after the later took over their rent-free land, 14 years after Odisha came under British rule in 1803.

The Buxi-led rebels first attacked the police station of Banpur, burnt government quarters and looted the treasury. After a British commander was killed during a fight at Gangapada, the government officials fled Khurda in fear. The revolt spread like wildfire to other parts of the state such as Gop, Kanika and Kujanga and lasted for around one and half year.

Political parties cutting across party lines lauded the Centre’s move. “On behalf of the people of Odisha, I welcome the decision to commemorate the bi-centenary led by Buxi Jagabandhu,” chief minister Naveen Patnaik said.

Oil minister Dharmendra Pradhan, who had written a letter to Jaitley seeking budgetary allocation for celebration of the 200 years of Paika revolt, said, “By giving recognition to the historic event, the Narendra Modi-led government has paid a befitting tributes to the heroes of Odisha who stood for the country.”

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Paika Bidroha

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