‘Jana Raj Bhavan’ initiative | Kolkata Raj Bhavan opens its doors for public

A heritage walk in collaboration with Indian Museum, was inaugurated at Raj Bhavan on Poila Boishakh in which school students participated

Updated - April 16, 2023 12:31 am IST

Published - April 15, 2023 09:06 pm IST - KOLKATA

Students take part in a heritage walk organised at the Raj Bhavan in Kolkata on April 15, 2023.

Students take part in a heritage walk organised at the Raj Bhavan in Kolkata on April 15, 2023. | Photo Credit: Debasish Bhaduri

Kolkata Raj Bhavan, the residence of West Bengal Governor and one of the most iconic colonial structures of Kolkata, on Saturday opened its doors for the common public. The Raj Bhavan was decked up on the occasion of Poila Baishak, Bengali New Year’s day to greet the visitors. Governor C.V. Ananda Bose, who had taken the initiative to allow common people to access Raj Bhavan, said that it was a way towards making “Jana Raj Bhavan”.

“The Subho Nababarsha is an auspicious occasion for the Raj Bhavan, Kolkata to take forward the Jana Raj Bhavan initiative and Mission Kala Kranti in the State of West Bengal in a big way,” a press statement by Raj Bhavan said.

As a part of Jana Raj Bhavan initiative, a heritage walk in collaboration with the Indian Museum, was inaugurated at Raj Bhavan on Poila Boishakh. School students participated in large numbers in the heritage walk.

The Governor also flagged off colourful ‘Peace Run’ where one thousand National Cadet Corps (NCC) cadets went around the streets of Kolkata on Poila Boishakh. In the evening, songs, poetry and traditional dance was organised at Raj Bhavan with the launch of Kala Kranti Mission. The Mission, according to Raj Bhawan was a “unique initiative to appreciate and celebrate the rich diversity of our cultural traditions and arts & crafts— our soft power, bestowed upon us down the millennium”.

The highlights of the heritage walk at Raj Bhavan involve the Central Marble Hall, the South Marble Hall, the North Marble Hall, the Chinese Cannon, the Grand stairs, Asia first Elevator, Two lakes and bridge as well as the Royal Coat of Arms.

Raj Bhavan in Kolkata, is located in the city’s Esplanade area built by Lord Wellesley in the early 19th century, which is similar to architecture of the Kedleston Hall in Derbyshire. The iconic building remained the principal seat of power for the entire subcontinent, from 1803 to 1912. Visitors can apply online for a heritage tour and will be allowed to visit designated areas, mostly on the ground floor of the Raj Bhavan.

Irksome visit

Over the past few days, Governor Ananda Bose has been visiting different State-run universities like the University of Calcutta and Presidency University, a development that has not gone well with the State government. A recent directive by the Governor asking the Vice Chancellor of State-run universities to submit weekly reports to Raj Bhavan, was also criticised by State’s Education Minister Bratya Basu.

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