Utkal Reporter Bureau
Bhubaneswar|18 July 2017
Odisha government set a move to get “Paika revolt” officially recognised as the first war of independence of India. It will formally place a demand before the centre in this regard, said state Culture minister Ashok Chandra Panda after a cabinet meeting on Tuesday.
The Minister said,” The cabinet meeting chaired by Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik today recommended the state government to place the demand before the Centre to declare Paika Rebellion as the first war of independence in Indian history,”
This move of the Odisha government has come on the eve of CM Naveen Pattnaik’s tour to New Delhi to attend the grand gala ceremony to be held in the national capital on 20th july to commemorate the bi-centenary of the Paika Revolt. Hundred and fifty paikas have also left for New Delhi in the morning to be part of the event.
The Paika revolt of 1817 in Odisha has triggered political contests after the BJP led central government placed its interest on it. As a conspicuous mark of interest in the event Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitely made budgetary allocation for the bi-centenary celebration of the 1817 Paika Revolt. To add more PM Narendra Modi felicitated the progenies of the revolt during his tour in Odisha in April this year.
CM Naveen Pattnaik will present the states demand f when he will be attending the commemorating the celebration of bi-centenary of the 1817 Paika revolt in the Vigyan Bhawan.
According to the state government “It would, indeed be a befitting tribute to declare Paika Rebellion as the first war of Independence on the occasion of 200 years of this historic event,” .
To substantiate his government’s stand Minister Panda said, the rebellion took place 40 years before the Sepoy Mutiny in 1857. It was the first well organised revolt against the British, said Mr. Panda referring the research work of eminent historian B.C Roy.
He said the movement had participations from the peaswants, paikas, Zamidars and Malangas to qualify it as a truly pluralistic movement. This movement in the course of time has become the torch bearer and catalyst of the subsequent freedom fight.