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Posted at: Jan 9, 2016, 1:24 AM; last updated: Jan 9, 2016, 1:06 AM (IST)

Bhagat Singh’s hideout now a protected monument

Games in martyr’s memory in Feb

  • Chandigarh: The Sports Department is all set to launch Shaheed-e-Azam Bhagat Singh Punjab Games. An official spokesman said the sports said the games would be held in February. He said the competitions during the games would be open to both men and women and to be hosted in different towns across the state. He said more than 9,000 players and officials were expected to take part. The winning teams would get a prize of Rs 15 lakh per sport. TNS
Bhagat Singh’s hideout now a protected monument
The building which is believed to be the hideout of the ‘Krantikari Party’ led by Bhagat Singh in Turi Bazaar, Ferozepur. Tribune photo

Anirudh Gupta

Ferozepur, January 8

After a long wait of almost seven decades since Independence, the state government has finally issued a notification to accord heritage status to the old double-storeyed building, which is believed to be a secret hideout of “Krantikari Party” led by legendary revolutionary Shaheed Bhagat Singh and his accomplices.

Though the state government took several years to grant this building “protected monument status”, local residents, who had launched an agitation for the same last year, are now contented with the move.

Deputy Commissioner DPS Kharbanda said though he had not received a copy of the notification, the officials concerned in Chandigarh have confirmed the same.

Kharbanda said a notice would be soon served to the occupants to preserve the structure as they would not be allowed to make any changes in the building henceforth.

“We will try to rehabilitate the families occupying this structure by offering them alternative accommodation so that the building can be renovated and preserved as per the status it deserves,” he added.

Earlier, after a prolonged battle fought by the local residents, the Department of Cultural Affairs, Heritage and Museums had issued a preliminary notification on December 19, 2014, under the Punjab Ancient and Historical Monuments and Archaeological Sites and Remains Act, 1964, to seek any objections to grant heritage status to this building.

Though no objection was received by the Department, there was an inordinate delay following which the Punjab and Haryana High Court had issued a notice to the state government on a contempt petition filed by Advocate HC Arora in December 2015, alleging non-compliance of the order for declaring this building a protected monument.

“For me this building is no less than a pilgrimage as I have grown up on stories around this hideout which was taken on rent by my father Dr Gaya Prashad under fake name of Dr BS Nigam to run a pharmacy here,” said Kranti Kumar Katiyar, who had visited this building in June last year.

“My father had told me so many stories about the secret activities during the revolutionary movement for which this building was used,” he said, expressing happiness over the move.

“While Dr Gaya Prasad used to run the pharmacy from the ground floor, the first floor was used by the revolutionaries to make bombs and evolve strategy against the oppressive British rule,” said Rakesh Kumar, who has played an instrumental role in the agitation to grant heritage status to the building.

Rakesh, who has authored several books on this monument, said the state government should establish a museum and library in this building.

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