Vidyasagar's birthplace to be developed as educational tourist hub: Mamata
Birsingha: Birsingha Graam, the birth place of Ishwar Chandra Vidyasagar in West Midnapore, would be developed as a new educational tourist hub in the state, said Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Tuesday, while inaugurating a year-long programme here on the occasion of his 200th birth anniversary.
"Birsingha Graam would be developed as an educational tourist spot so that people from across the country can come here and get to know about Vidyasagar and his contribution towards the upliftment of the society. A new gate would be erected at the entrance of the village. The Information and Cultural Affairs department would prepare a detailed project report (DPR) in this regard," Banerjee maintained.
"We would set up a research centre after his name so that people are enlightened on how Vidyasagar contributed to Bengali language and literature through his 'Bornoporichoy'. I would request the Education department to take necessary steps. A museum would also be set up containing his books and other documents related to him. An elaborate plan would be taken up to develop the place as a tourist hub. A community hall and rest rooms for the visitors would also come up in the area," Banerjee said.
Birsingha would be developed along the lines of Jorasanko, the birthplace of Rabindranath Tagore and other tourist spots including the birthplaces of Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose and Swami Vivekananda, Banerjee added.
Meanwhile, taking a dig at BJP without mentioning its name, Banerjee said that some people are trying to destroy the cultural heritage of Bengal.
"A group of fanatics damaged Vidyasagar's bust in the city. It was not only a mere statue, but a representation of our civilisation and culture. The history of Bengal cannot be obliterated in this manner. We have set up another bust of Vidyasagar. His writings would be kept in digital format in an archive set up to commemorate his birth anniversary," she said.
"We are also setting up a museum at Badur Bagan in the city, where Vidyasagar used to live. He had strongly advocated many social reforms, including the introduction of Hindu Widow Remarriage Act and immensely contributed for the cause. He also fought for the education of women in the country, thereby dispelling the darkness people had lived with for so long," the Chief Minister said.
Banerjee also urged the students of schools and colleges to take part in various programmes to show respect to Vidyasagar and announced that one school in each district would be given Rs 2 lakh to conduct programmes on Vidyasagar throughout the year.
She inaugurated the historical building of a high school named after Vidyasagar, which was earlier announced as a
heritage building by the government.
His residence has already been announced as a heritage house, while the state government has allotted Rs 2.5 crore for the renovation of Vidyasagar Smriti Mandir.