ANDHRA PRADESH

The legend of Komaram Bheem

In remembrance:The ITDA is constructing a memorial for the 14 warriors, who had attained martyrdom along with Komaram Bheem at Jodeghat.—PHOTO: S. HARPAL SINGH

In remembrance:The ITDA is constructing a memorial for the 14 warriors, who had attained martyrdom along with Komaram Bheem at Jodeghat.—PHOTO: S. HARPAL SINGH  

"Thedat...thedat...police vather". The Gond rebels at Jodeghat were jolted out of their sleep early that morning in October 1940 as the women came running and shouting to wake them up.

The women, who were out to fetch drinking water , had spotted armed policemen surrounding their village as they came looking for Komaram Bheem, the tribal leader who dared to question the authority of the Nizams of Hyderabad. It was three years since Bheem had been leading a rebellion on the question of rights of tribal people to pastures and the lands being tilled by them in the forests .

Bheem, who was camping at Jodeghat with a handful of his warriors, were instantly up and got ready by arming themselves . Most of the rebels could manage to get hold of axes, sickles and bamboo sticks. Asifabad Talukdar Abdul Sattar, a personification of the Nizams’ tyrannytried to get Bheem to surrender through emissaries.

After refusal for the third time by Bheem to submit himself , Sattar ordered to open fire . The tribal rebels could do nothing but went down fighting. "As many as 15 warriors besides Bheem attained martyrdom. The incident plunged the tribals into gloom on that full moon day,” the late Maru master and Bhadu master, the close aides of Bheem, used to say whenever they wound up their narrative of the incident. Not many, however, got to see the martyrs as the bodies were burnt unceremoniously.

The ITDA is building a memorial for 15 associates of Bheem at Kerameri. The memorial will be inaugurated on October 18 on the 73rd anniversary of that fateful day.



The ITDA is constructing a memorial for the 15 associates of Komaram Bheem near the latter's statue at Jodeghat, the present day Kerameri .



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