|Jammu Links News|
|Hijli Detention Camp now Hijli Saheed Bhawan. Photo courtesy: Biswarup Ganguly (Wikimedia Commons)|
the Satyagrahis. His forte was to beat them hard until they fell down like 8 pins in the Bowling alley. Yet another technique employed by this well educated English officer was his graceful treatment of Bengali women. Literally he would drag the women to the open streets, strip them of their clothes and leave them there. At stake was the modesty of Indian womanhood. He was unscrupulous and struck terror among the people. The Group headed by Gupta decided on 10th April 1931 to get rid of him soon. The task was given to four young men Phani Kundu, Jyoti
Following day, in the evening on the play ground adjacent to his
|Robert Dougles. www.midnapore.|
Bungalow Peddy was surrounded by teachers and officials. Jyoti and Vimal stealthily entered the ground posing to help the collector. The place was poorly lit, taking advantage of the situation they fired at Peddy at close range and he died on the following day.
During this tumultuous time one 71 year old, uneducated woman Matangini Hazra took the people of Midnapore by surprise. In a jiff, she did something that no body expected of her. This widow was carrying the national flag in hand to unfurl it atop a building. Her age did not bother her and she was already against wearing purdah. The police could not stop her and finally she was shot dead by them.
|Matangini Hazra topyaps.com/7|
Robert Douglas' fate was sealed in Midnapore. He was concerned about his personal safety and had to carry on his duty as the head of the district administration. He too was not a popular British official and an equally a treacherous man when dealing with freedom fighters He was instrumental in killing two youths at Hijli Detention Camp, Midnapore. The poor youths were unarmed and put to death.
|Robert Douglas www.midnapore.|
On the 30th of April 1932, he was presiding over a meeting of the District Board. Exactly at 5.30 pm. he was signing some papers surrounded by members of the Board. There was nothing unusual. Two youngsters Pradoot Bhattacharya and Prabhakangsu entered the room and in a flash one of them whipped out a gun and shot st Douglas' chest and he died in the hospital. This was done to revenge the killing of two innocent unarmed youths at the detention camp. The youth who did the firing escaped, but Pradyot Bhattacharya could not escape as his gun did not work during stand-off with the police. So, he was arrested and the police tried to pry out the whereabouts of the other. He never betrayed his accomplice and was hanged to death at Midnapore Central jail on 12th January 1933.
The spate of violence against the British officials took the people and also the British by surprise. Many Europeans did not want to risk their lives working in Midnapore district which had become a center of revolutionary activities directed against the British.
None wanted to work in a place like this. At last, Mr. Bernard E. J. Burge volunteered to take the charge of magistrate post at Midnapore unmindful of the risk involved in his work. Burge, being shrewd and careful had a good security around him and had his bungalow properly fenced. He would stay at home unless he had a solid reason to go out. Several months went by without any untoward incident.
On 2nd September Burge decided to to play football match at police grounds as he was fond of the game. There was a popular match between Mohammedan Sporting of Calcutta and the local Town Club of which he was the president. Anath and Mrigen had already got mixed up with the players. No sooner Burge had arrived at 5.30 pm evening than 8 shot rang out showering on Burge. The excitement and noise of the foot ball came drowned the noise and shouting that followed the firing. Mrigen was pinned down by a bodyguard and was killed. Other three Bengal accomplices Ramkrishna Roy, Braja Kishor Chakraborty and Nirmal Jibon Ghosh were arrested in connection with the conspiracy. Braja and Ramkrishna were jailed on charges of killing Bernad and sentenced them to death on 25 th October 1934 and Nirmal Jibon Ghosh following day- 26th October. Since then Midnapore never had Magistrate till independence. Thus 3 British officials in successive years, 1931, 1932 and 1933 were assassinated by the Indian revolutionaries. All the martyred men were Bengalis.
|Tomb of Bernard Burge .midnapore.in|
On the 26th October 1933, the 3000 patriots in the jail shed tears for those who were hanged to death by the British, The inmates included several women revolutionaries who wanted India to be freed from the British soon.