When Rabindranath created the character Surma of the novel 'Bou Thakuranir Haat', he envisioned a Zamindar house to keep her memories alive. Today the Sreepur Zamindar house is long forgotten. But light of hope is still ignited in concerned locals who believe government initiatives can turn it into a potential tourist center.
According to local educators and history researchers, Sarada Ranjan Pal bought the lands of this region from Nawab Alivardi Khan in the fifteenth century. Jessore's influential king Pratapaditya married off his son Udayaditya to Bibha Rani Pal, daughter of Sarada Ranjan Pal, a zamindar of Sreepur. Saradha Ranjan built the Zamindar house in favor of Pratapaditya.
[caption id="attachment_231142" align="alignright" width="310"]
The iron chest used by the zamindars of Sreepur, now in ruins Dhaka Tribune
Raja Pratapaditya was a very influential king and Sarada Ranjan had a relatively liberal mind. The distances in relations between the two affected the family of Bibha Pal. Subsequently, Rabindranath Tagore wrote this story as the popular novel 'Bou Thakuranir Haat'.
The ruins of the Zamindar house situated in Sreepur Upazila, 15 km from Magura district town, still remain. Few monuments and the big gate are still clear. An ark remains neglected. Many local residents know of this place only as a ruined Zamindar house.
Dr. Majeda Khatum, former teacher of Sreepur Degree College, said: "In the novel of 'Bou Thakurani Haat', Udayaditya's wife Surma is basically the Zamindar's daughter Bibhaa Pal. Sadly, we have failed to educate the new generation on this history. The last sign is in ruins.”
Sadia Afrin, BA student of Sreepur Degree College said: "We have heard that it is a Zamindar house but we know nothing about its history, not even the novel 'Bou Thakuranir Haat."
According to Sreepur Press Club President Ashraf Hossain Paltu, this is not just a landlord house. It is connected to history too. Even Surma from Rabindranath Tagore's 'Bou Thakuranir Haat' novel was born and raised here. Udayaditya also came here with his wife to spend time in leisure. Such an establishment does not deserve negligence. If it is renovated under the tourism department, then the new generation will know certain unknown information.
Magura Deputy Commissioner Mohammad Atiqur Rahman said: “We have already started working with Magura tourist spots. Hopefully we will do something about this too.”