• Tuesday, Nov 12, 2019
  • Last Update : 02:06 pm

Historic Rudrakar Math in dire need of renovation

  • Published at 12:31 am August 21st, 2019
The 250-year-old Rudrakar Math in Shariatpur Dhaka Tribune
The 250-year-old Rudrakar Math in Shariatpur Dhaka Tribune

Locals say renovation and preservation could potentially turn this place into a tourist spot for people keen on travelling

Rudrakar Math (Rudrakar Field) is a historic establishment and archeological site in Shariatpur. Even though locals identify it as the Rudrakar Jamindar Bari Math, it is in fact the mausoleum of Nilmoni Chakraborty, an influential Jamindar who lived over 250 years ago. However, this tall historic structure is in near ruins, neglected by the authorities.  

Locals say renovation and preservation could potentially turn this place into a tourist spot for people keen on travelling. It is approximately 3km south of the Shariatpur deputy commissioner's office. Locals know this place as the Babu Bari Math.

Visiting, this correspondent found this historic site in a dire state, with collapsing wall plaster, garbage, and weeds all around. There used to be inscriptions on the wall even a few years ago, and the valuable artifacts used in the structure were stolen over the years since the liberation war.  

During the war the Pakistani army, with the help of local Razakars (Pakistani collaborators), tried to destroy the math using machine gun and mortar shells, but it did little to no damage to the structure.

According to local history, at the beginning of the era of Jamindars, the Mandir was established in phases by Banilal Chakraborty, Khitilal Chakraborty, and Boshontolal Chakraborty, the three sons of Nilmoni Chakraborty.    

It took renowned masons Tilok Bhuiya and Gurucharan Bhuiya, and hundreds of extra hands, to complete the structure  over a span of 10 years. 

Senior citizens in the region said that under Jamindar rule, this region saw  great advancement in the practice of education and culture. During British rule, they built 19 schools in a half square kilometre area, where education and cultural practices flourished. 

Rudrakar Jamindar Bari was surrounded by 8 or 10 multistoried buildings. Among them, the three storied buildings were residential chambers. The others were used for court sessions, warehouses, theatres, kitchens, and worshipping purposes.    

Rudrakar Union Parishad Chairman Habibur Rahman Dhali said: "A lot of valuables were stolen from the site due to negligence. It is my sincere request to the government that they look into preserving and renovating this historic monument, so that it can be turned into an attractive tourist spot." 

Shariatpur Additional District Commissioner Md Mamun Ul Hasan said: "We have previously sent a letter to the Ministry of Cultural Affairs and Department of Archaeology regarding renovation of the Rudrakar Jamindar Bari Math. We will once again notify the authorities concerned to renovate and preserve this ancient archaeological site. "