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Rann Kali, the war memorial built by BSF at the request of Christian and Muslim soldiers

When the F Company of BSF decided to build a war memorial at the spot, the Christian and the Muslim soldiers requested that a Kali temple be built instead.

By Newsd
Published on :
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Half-a-century back, a Kali temple was built by the Border Security Force (BSF) as a war memorial at the request of two soldiers – a Christian and a Bengali Muslim – at the Border Outpost (BOP) here, which h now become a pilgrimage for locals.

Major P K Ghosh, who was then commanding four border outposts (BOP) of BSF at Srinagar, Amlighat, Samarendraganj and Nalua in the southern part of Tripura bordering Chittagong division, in the then east Pakistan has chronicled the story in ‘Borderman’ the BSF journal.

When contacted, Major Ghosh said the Srinagar BOP was located in a very important strategic position and after the revolt by the East Bengal Regiment in 1971 against Pakistan, BSF aided the rebels in forming the first Muktibahini (Liberation army) here.

“The MMG post at Srinagar BOP was playing a crucial role in thwarting the Pakistani army. It was the forward observation post near the Chittagong-Noakhali area. Exchange of fire was nothing new in that area, but it intensified when the liberation war started picking up”, Major Ghosh, the retired BSF commander told PTI telephonically.

He said since the MMG post was causing major damage to the Pakistani side, it became a precision target for the enemy.

“A precision target receives continuous firing of shells over a period of an hour or so, it is likely to get damaged. On that day they fired 100 shells in ten minutes”, Ghosh recalled.

“There were three members of the detachment at the post including a Nepali Christian, Constable Rehaman – a Bengali Muslim and Constable Banabihari Chakraborty. The situation at the spot was terrible, and I asked them not to step out of the bunker,” he said.

As the situation turned worse, Chakraborty asked the others to pray to goddess Kali. “They did that without even considering their religious beliefs. The post was saved due to its position near a pond and marshy land and heavy rain a night ago. A bamboo tree also prevented the shells from torching the bunker and they ended up as air bursts”, he said.

When the F Company of BSF decided to build a war memorial at the spot, the Christian and the Muslim soldiers requested that a Kali temple be built instead.

“Building a Kali temple for a war memorial is very unconventional. But BSF did that to honour the request of the soldiers “, Ghosh said.

The funds were collected from locals and the Bangladeshis also joined in constructing the Kali temple in 1972.

“We named it Rann Kali (War Kali) temple to honour their faith. At a time of religious intolerances, such examples stand as a beacon of hope”, he said.

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