GHESS ZAMINDARS-THE GREAT FREEDOM FIGHTERS OF INDIA
The tribal zamindar Madho Singh Ghess in the then district of Sambalpur(Odisha) with his sons Hatte Singh, Kunjal Singh, Bairi Singh and Airi singh aided by the regiment formed by the local tribal youths had put up a gallant uncompromising fight for the Indian freedom struggle beginning from 1857 and dedicating their lives they have set up a glorious chapter in the History of India. It was after the siege of Ghess and Madho Singh being hanged on 31st December 1858 his sons Hatte Singh, Kunjal Singh, Bairi Singh and Airi Singh grew more furious and continued their fierce fight against the Britishers lying in ambush at different forest strongholds and hideouts ,’Singhora Pass”(on NH6 bordering Chhatisgarh) being one of them. At long last when the insurgence was mitigated through length and breadth of the country they were nabbed by the Britishers and met their tragic end. After painstaking efforts the Britishers succeeded in arrestingHatte and his brave brothers-Kunjal and Bairi. Hatte was amongst the first batch of Indians and the lone Oriya fighter to have been sent to the Cellular Jail in the infamous ‘Kalapani’. Bairi in the process of imprisonment , was carried off by small pox within the four walls of the Jail. Long before their death younger brother Airi Singh was made chocked to death in a sealed tunnel. The last Indian fighter Kunjal Singh became martyr being hanged in Sambalpur Jail. In the opinion of Dr. Narayan Kulkarni the former Deputy Director of Indian archeology ,”It is a glaring rare example that five members consisting of father and sons of the same zamindar family sacrificed their lives fighting for the motherland.” Due to want of proper in depth research about this fight by the aborigins of Western Odisha certain momentous facts of Indian History like this one is left in the limbo of darkness waiting to be brought to limelight. -Ashok Kumar Pujahari...
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