KoPT to organise 'Heritage Tour' to highlight places of historical significance
Kolkata: Kolkata Port Trust, for the first time in its history, is embarking on a mission to highlight its rich heritage in the best possible way. Come Sunday and KoPT will take you on a heritage tour on board its vessel to explore various places in and around river Ganga, most of which have been shielded from public view.
"Kolkata Port is intrinsic with the history of Kolkata and we feel that remembering Kolkata's glorious past cannot be without having knowledge about the port that was officially born 147 years ago. We have set up a museum at the Fairley Warehouse, an early 20th century peer of the Strand Warehouse that was lost in a fire on February 14, 2010, which will throw light at various landmark memories associated with the port. Our heritage tour will begin right from there," KoPT chairman Vinit Kumar said.
Elaborating on the tour, Kumar said that the three and half hour journey will start from the museum and then visitors will be taken to Princep Ghat, from where they will board a vessel. "We will be taking them on a guided tour of various jetties and constructions on the bank of river Hooghly. The tour will end at the Indenture Memorial," Kumar said.
The Indenture Memorial has been set up at the Suriname Jetty. It was from this place that the indentured workers from India set sail in ships to the small country located on the north-east Atlantic coast of South America from 1873 to 1910.
Gifted by the Surinamese Government, the memorial is a bust of 'Baba and Mai' - a depiction of male and female indentured workers known as father and mother - and a replica of a monument in Suriname capital Parimaribo. It symbolises the first Indian man and woman to set foot in the Dutch-speaking nation.
"How many of us know the jetty where Sister Nivedita had landed or that Uttam Kumar was an employee of KoPT, or have witnessed a piece of important history of the city overlooked by a tower peaked by a Cooke and Kelvey turret clock dating back to 1899? All these will be part of the tour," Kumar added.
The tour will be conducted weekly. The rate per person will be Rs 1,399, while that for foreigners will be Rs 2,499 each, including refreshments.