Saturday, 17 March 2018

Col. Bailey's dirty Dungeon, Srirangapatna fort - was it built for the British by Tipu Sultan?

Bailey Dungeon, Srirangapatna fort, KA Flickr

Srirangapatna fort, Dungeon. abhinavagarwal.net/
Colonel Bailey's  Dungeon is part of the historical Srirangapatna fort, Srirangapatna, Karnataka that was recaptured by Tipu Sultan from the Marathas in 1872.  Made of mortar and brick, the vaulted dungeon with thick walls  is below the ground level and measures about  30.5 m long  and 12.2 m wide. it is located to the north of the Ranganatha Swamy temple and  was named after Colonel Bailey who was confined here for a pretty long time until his death in 1780 AD (some records mention 1782 AD). The dungeon  with low roof has  a series of arches resting on huge pillars dividing the interior into bays. The small town of Srirangapatna is close to Mysore - about 19 km. The fort was first built during the Vijayanagara Dynasty in 1454. It was Tipu Sultan who made the fort more formidable  and  did additional fortifications, etc.,  in consultation with the French with whom he had a military alliance to fight against his arch enemy the East India company. The EIC for a long time made a futile attempt to subdue Tipu  with  help from the Marathas and the Nizam of Hyderabad to control the fort.
Co. Bailey's Dungeon and Srirangapatna fort. HelloTravel

Col Bailey's dungeon, Srirangapatna fort, KA My Greedy Backpack
The British prisoners of  war  and others who were confined here had to undergo painful torture.  Chained on the wrists to stone slabs with  stone hooks  fixed on its walls, the prisoners had to stand in the waist-high water. The water was often dirty and infected and, further, they had to put up with leeches that stuck on the  fatigued  body in the dark dungeon that was far removed from the outside world. Hands being chained, there was no way the
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prisoners could get rid of the blood-sucking leeches on their body. This kind of torture ritual would continue until the prisoners agreed to sing -  to confess.The pitch dark, morbid and appealing prison condition would psychologically work on the captives. Countless British underwent this torture here and mention may be made of  other British  officers like  S, Samson, Fraser, Brithwhite, Captain Rulay,Captain Baird and Lindsay.  Col Bailey and these officers were captured during the second  Anglo-Mysore War, also called the Battle of Pollilur (September 1780). Tipu decisively  defeated the troop led by  Colonel Bailey.  Several Europeans were captured alive while more than 3,800 sepoys suffered casualties. Col Bailey became a POW and was sent to the dungeon followed by other officers mentioned above. Tipu brought many men from the troops and Colonel
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 The presence of a  cannon used by Tipu is in the dungeon and one explanation for its presence here is that  when there was a military blockade at Srirangapatna, the  heavy canon rolled back and, under its  own wight, made a hole in the ceiling.  At last, fell into the dungeon which has become its permanent resting place.


http://blog.abhinavagarwal.net/2009/07/colonel-baileys-dungeon-srirangapatna.html


http://www.deccanherald.com/content/201497/dark-dingy-dungeons-srirangapatna