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Chapter: Calcutta Diary: Roots of Calcutta
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Calcutta: Society and Change: 1690 - 1990; "Introduction"; Rupa & Co publishers,1991.
This introductory note gives a vivid description of the founding of Calcutta three hundred years ago, and the state of Bengal at that period of time, including the intrigues by and between the Europeans as they jostled for power and position.
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Picture Gallery: Calcutta in the 17th and 18th Centuries Calcutta: Society and Change: 1690 - 1990; "Growth of the Metropolis"; Rupa & Co publishers,1991.
Describes how the city of Calcutta grew from the flood bank of the Hooghly during the times of Job Charnock in the late 17th century to the organized city, complete with Fort William, the Esplanade and other famous landmarks of Calcutta.
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Picture Gallery: Calcutta in the 19th Century. Excerpts from 'Calcutta: City of Palaces'
James Atkinson's epithet 'The City of Palaces' is presented, along with excerpts of comments about the European influence.
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Calcutta: Society and Change: 1690 - 1990; "The Calcuttans"; Rupa & Co publishers,1991.
Describes the people who lived in the early part of Calcutta's growth.
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1. Calcutta: Society and Change: 1690 - 1990; "Introduction"; Rupa & Co publishers,1991. CALCUTTA is on the east (which happens to be the left ) bank of the Hooghly, the most easterly of the distributaries of the Ganga in its large delta spread over approximately 70 sq. km. Job Charnock chose this site on August 24, 1690, and it has since been criticized as an erroneous selection, as all other European settlements - Hugli, Chinsurah, Chandernagore and Serampore - were all on the western bank. Tamluk, the port founded several centuries before Christ, and Nabadip - in the 11th Century A.D. - were also on the western bank. Rudyard Kipling, the mildest of the critics, wrote 200 years later that it was "chance directed", but that was probably because Calcutta had grown into a city bigger than Bombay where the poet was born. Even imperialists suffer from parochialism. Events have proved that Charnock was not wrong - at least had not been so for 257 years till partition robbed the city he had founded of a large part of its hinterland, by bringing the border as close as 77 km. The border, like most borders, was as much economic as political. Nobody in Charnock's time or even ten years before the happening could have foreseen partition. Charnock was led to Sutanati and adjoining Kalikata by the weavers (Basaks) and traders (Setts) - who had settled at the former place as early as the fifteenth century (i.e. before the Portugese had sailed up the Hooghly in 1510; and possibly before Vasco da Gama had discovered the 'Cape route' between Europe and India in 1497); he was definitely not led by chance!The Setts and Basaks had come to Sutanati and Kalikata because it was nearer the the sea, and the Betor canal connecting the Hooghly with Satgaon was silting up. According to Sir Evan Cotton, Charnock came to Calcutta because "The Bengali families which have been so closely associated with British rule in India - the Setts, the Bysaks, the Mallicks (ancestor Rajaram of Trevene [Triveni]) - advised Charnock to transfer the Company's Factory from Hooghly to Sutanati ". The Hooghly had been an important waterway for more than 3000 years. Tamluk (a shortened form for Tamralipti) - lower down the river - gets its name from the copper which was mined, as it is even now, at Ghatsila, not far from the port. Copper had been eclipsed by iron around 100 B.C.. So the name must have originated during the Copper Age, when Tamralipti exported the ore and metal to peninsular India, since the alternative was the less accessible Rajasthan area. The longer, original name of the port was in use till the third century B.C., when Ashoka's daughter and son sailed form it for Sri Lanka. Copper was replaced by other exports - mainly cotton goods - to South-East Asia. When the weavers and traders settled at Sutanati, they were most likely viewing prospects in the regions now known as Malaysia, Thailand, Vietnam and Indonesia. Since the East India Company, whose interests Job Charnock represented, had to economize on the bullion they spent on their purchases, export of goods to other Asian countries was as important a consideration as export to European countries. Sutanati was valuable in that context. Let us turn to an even earlier period - to the 18 centuries between the Ashoka siblings' voyage to Sri Lanka and the first entry of Portugese ships into the Hooghly estuary. Greeks knew of the delta (perhaps second or third hand) and called it Gangaridae, placing it further east of Parasii, their term for Magadha. Shards of Roman poetry and the clay cast of Augustan medallion have been found on the banks of the Hooghly, thereby pointing to Roman trade extending as far east in the early centuries of the Christian era. This trade, as well as Vasco Da Gama's crossing of the Arabian Sea from Malindi in East Africa to the Kerala coast, was helped by knowledge of the monsoons - winds blowing in a particular direction throughout a season. The same knowledge was used by Ashoka's children for their voyage to Sri Lanka. The Bay of Bengal is so shaped and situated, that the north-east monsoon wafts ships from the Hooghly outwards towards Sri Lanka and Java, and the south-west monsoon facilitated homeward voyages before the season of rains and storms sets in. The people of Bengal were mariners till the Sena Dynasty lowered the status of traders in the caste hierarchy, and sea trade was declared polluting. These acts might have been prompted by a desire to deny the Buddhist monasteries their principal source of income: donations from trades. These degradations and proscriptions were instrumental in ensuring the decline of Buddhism in Bengal. The needs of trade, however, could not be stamped out. On the west coast, where Islam had reached four centuries earlier than in Bengal, conversions to that religion ensured the continuance of the maritime tradition. Ibrahim, who piloted Vasco da Gama from East Africa to India, was a Gujarati Muslim. The Chinese and the Arabs took over the overseas trade, and both ranged over the waters from China to Africa. They crossed the equator but did not round the southern tip of Africa, for there seemed to be no produce worth picking up in Zululand. Some Indians, mainly Gujaratis and Sindhis, also participated in the
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near Sibpur opposite Calcutta. Satgaon. Sir Thomas Roe's embassy to the court of Jahangir in 1611 had cleared the way for the British to establish their trading settlements. 2. Calcutta was suitably located for interception. English rivalry with the Dutch was less prolonged and less intense.. The church built at Bandel in 1599 was destroyed during the siege. intermediate halts were required when recession set in. The number of pilot vessels depended on the traffic and a French visitor in 1789 noted that the English had twelve pilot brigs at the place which later came to be known as Sandheads.and were Christians. Chandernagore was founded by the French in 1688. Arnold Publishers). those evicted from Calcutta and Cossimbazar took refuge with the French and the Dutch. He was told that previously the French and the Dutch had a pilot vessel each. The prolonged occupation robbed the French settlement of all its elegance. Calcutta.. The Portugese located their settlement near Bandel. and had a country house at Garati for its Governor. Humayun had come in contact with Armenian traders during his refuge in Persia. Turks and V enetians.Arabs. truly a 'City of Palaces'. Both the French and Dutch settlements were upstream of Calcutta.html trade. Betor. Upto Jeddah in the Red Sea. when they began developing Diamond Harbour. The English used Kulpi for that purpose till 1789. The factory was re-occupied after Calcutta had been founded. the temple town of Navadwip. the trade route coincided with the pilgrim route of the Moslem Haj. Armenians spoke Persian .com/roots/s1calroots.tripod. and not in Portugese Hugli or Bandel. and often at war. Trade with Europe.the half-mile width of the river was under the surveillance of guns mounted on watch towers with a chain drawn across. Till late in the 18th century. Chandernagore retained its identity longest. By 1580. however.. pp. How it is that the Portugese presence at Hugli inhibited all European nations other than the Dutch from establishing their settlements is not clear. Till the early 18th century. First. below which . it can be inferred that a port existed had existed at Bandel. by the time their first trading settlement was established in 1537. However.the Arabic word for harbour. and their settlement at Hugli (named after the river but spelt differently to distinguish the town from the river) grew. However. In 1629. but even in its small town shabbiness it had "Liberte". had a place for the purpose of lighting the burden of ships at a place below the confluence of the Rupnarain with the Hooghly. It had the advantage of geographical location. till 1947. far from being the 'City of Dreadful Night' was. The Danes. Shaista Khan. In turn. Gondalpara was abandoned in 1714 and later incorporated into Chandernagore. forbade their entry or residence throughout his territories. the author says '. and had to leave in 1686.between Thana (Sibpur) and Metiabruz . compiled by S. Chinsurah was well inhabited by Armenians. To guard the settlements on the west bank. was still lucrative. which is a popular mispronunciation of 'Bandar' . Throughout the 18th century. for the oldest Armenian Church on the banks of the Hooghly was built in 1707 in the Dutch settlement of Chinsurah. Mukherjee Click picture to enlarge Description of Picture 2 of 9 3/2/2012 6:03 PM . in its prime. Encyclopedia Brittanica. The treasury had remained at Satgaon. the Portugese wielded some influence at Akbar's court. the Danes and the French came to the river after the Moghuls had driven out the Portugese in 1632. two kilometers south. Thus. upstream from Calcutta during the Arab supremacy over the seas around India. However. Falta and Baranagore by the Dutch. Husain Alauddin Shah was ruling Bengal when the Portugese first entered the Hooghly estuary in 1518. They were eminently suited to be middlemen. only two kilometers away from Bandel and not too far from the earlier port.1858). the English and the French were rivals in Europe. Calcutta: City of Palaces .laid siege of the Portugese settlement at Hugli and in 1632. and the Dutch built their settlement at Chinsurah.Calcutta Diary: The Roots of Calcutta http://sankalpa.annoyed with these forcible conversions . though from Goa and not form their settlement on the Hooghly. The Dutch were the first to challenge Portugese hold on Asian trade. The fortunes of these two nations had by then declined beyond redemption. Portugese slave traders boasted in 1630 that they had made more Christians in one year than all the missionaries in ten. the English. The direction of and route of the trade was the same as with Rome in earlier times. had been used as an anchorage by the Portugese. It provides detailed information of its founding and growth. Bengalis had to rest content with the adventurers of Chand Saudagar and a few others.. The goods were handed over to Venetians to sell to the rest of Europe. Shirazis. It will be useful to recall two facts. For 192 years the Portugese enjoyed a near monopoly of Bengal's trade with Europe. Pilotage had been found necessary on the Hooghly since 1695. it is revealed here. Hugli attracted other settlements. Aurangzeb allowed it to be rebuilt in 1660. The Moghuls did not compel anyone to turn Muslim and were tolerant of the Portugese. The settlements were not free to remain peaceful to each other once hostilities broke out in Europe. "Egalite" and "Fraternite" inscribed on the gates which faced British India on the Grand Trunk Road running through the enclave. when it merged into independent India. by J P Losty (The British Library. (end of chapter) Other references and links to historical information about Calcutta: 1. the British later built a large cantonment at Barrackpore. the English shelled and occupied Chandernagore from 1793 to 1813. Falta and Baranagore. America and India. having incurred the displeasure of the Governor. some of whom followed him back to India. Arnold Publishers). During the 1757 troubles between the English and Siraj-ud-dowla. about 42 km. and the administrative center of Panduah. did not reciprocate. however.A survey of the city in the days of the East India Company (1690 . Second. Picture Gallery: Calcutta in the 17th and 18th Centuries Source: 'Calcutta: City of Palaces' by J P Losty (British Libraries. who. although transactions had to be conducted through intermediaries . To storm through that stretch was possible only by a strong naval force which neither the French nor the Dutch could bring. who settled in Serampore and Gondalpara (now part of Chandernagore) around 1670. After having accomplished that.the language of the Moghul court . It is possible that they (the Roman Catholics) were equally intolerant of other Catholics. The Dutch had a less bitter and shorter experience of British ingratitude in 1759 fighting them on the Hooghly. while Serampore was purchased from the Danes by the British around 1845. the Customs House was located here too. though not of the same denomination as the Portugese. Roman Catholics around Bandel and Hugli boasted to an Italian visitor that they did not permit heretics ( by which they meant Protestants) to live among them. Within months of having received with gratitude French hospitality and succor. The Hooghly being subject to tides. Sha Jahan . The Dutch settlements of Baranagore and Chinsurah were exchanged for British enclaves in Sumatra around 1824. 412-416 DISCUSSIONS: Comment # 1: Received from Home | Roots | Creative Forum | Future Vision | Stop'n Look! | Contact Us | Return to Top 2. Sher Shah was the ruler of Bengal as well as the rest of North India. they established their settlement at Chinsurah in 1622 and other stations on the way to Chinsurah at Baluster. but their original efforts were directed towards wresting the Indonesian islands from the Portugese. they appeared in Golghat in the heart of Hugli town only in 1650. the Moghuls had extended their authority over Bengal. and a smaller one at Berhampore. but was in ruins through unuse. Arabs were the principal carriers of both pilgrims and goods.
B. 40. 5. Mafarge Assets Corp. Old temples point to the Hooghly having swept eastward in a meander which touched Garia to return to a point above the place where it receives the Damodar (see map). The English had possession of the riverside of Kalikata. Rijksmuseum. for the Moghuls lacked even a flotilla. who was an "interloper" or "merchant" trading on his own without being part of the Company. At the eastern end is Baitakkhana. Amsterdam. About 50 yards from the fort was the Church of St. and magazines for their ammunition". built a place of worship with timber. 81." At the beginning of the 18th century Calcutta was on its way to outstripping all its rivals. 1665 Oil on canvas. and mentions that the English settled at Kalikata after "the Moghuls had pardoned all the robberies and murders committed on his subjects". Thomas Daniel. came up the present route in 1705. to the west of Laldighi (which had a succession of names: Tank Square. vol. Colored etching with aquatint. East side of Tank Square and the Old Mission Church. The present Cathedral. when Shobha Singh's rebellion started. Colored etching with aquatint. Calcutta as in MDCCLVI.1730. 8. The ancient pipal tree there was cut down i 1820 by a notification of the Governor-General. there are no polemics. and hence filled by salt water.II. 4.. 7. Kalikata was preferred to Sutanati or Govindapur "for the sake of a large shady tree". 40. Early view of Calcutta (unspecified origins) DISCUSSIONS: Comment # 1: Received from Home | Roots | Creative Forum | Future Vision | Stop'n Look! | Contact Us | Return to Top 3. Houses on the Chowringhee Road. because Charnock used the channel to sail to Madras to enlist help. Most investigators hold that Charnock's favorite was a pipal at the end of the avenue that led from his residence eastwards. Howrah) would have been a better place to settle down". Calcutta. Thomas Daniel. The construction of a hospital was begun in 1707. with St Anne's Church c. Colored etching with aquatint. which he asked the Council to register against a mortgage of Rs. Views of Calcutta #9. Calcutta. earlier called the Portugese Church. by Samaren Roy Rupa & Co publishers. Charnock used to draw on his hookah underneath it. Views of Calcutta #3.902. Indians occupied both the waterfront and inland sites. which was turned into a spill channel for tides by the excavation in 1748 of obstructions. Job Charnock. The new Court House.. Views of Calcutta #5.html 1. Calcutta. Hamilton the fort as a "irregular tetragon" built of brick and mortar. 1778.1991. Thomas Daniel. No cavalry can ride down a river or splash through a marsh. later replaced by a masonry structure. Calcutta 1787. and named the construction after the reigning sovereign. Anne. Line engraving by Thomas Kitchin. Old Court House Street from the north. later called Bow Bazar Street. that must have been before 1686. 203 x 316 cm. and now B. 40. was built in 1799. A 4282 2. Calcutta: Society and Change: 1690 . So Charnock sited himself and his warehouse at a place to which access by land was restricted to a narrow strip of land between the Hooghly and the Salt Lake.Calcutta Diary: The Roots of Calcutta http://sankalpa. He was not apprehensive of an assault by water. He thought that "a pretty good garden belonging to the Armenians across the river (that is. The Governor's House in the fort "is the best and most regular piece of architecture that I saw in India. having been once driven out of Hugli. The Dutch factory at Hooghly. The fort was then roughly where the General Post Office is located now.5 x 53 cm.1990. and in bazras (budgerows) in water. The English did the same at Kalikata. too. Thomas Daniel. Residents were carried about on land in palanquins. Esplanade Row West with the Council House. Alexander Hamilton defiantly owned a house in Calcutta. Bagh). "Growth of the Metropolis". and the French and Dutch were not expected late in the 17th century to be contenders of power on the Hooghly. Views of Calcutta #7. The location and identity of that tree has been the subject of considerable speculation. The Portugese who were strong and dominating. All armies on the move resorted to plunder and the wealthy moved away from their paths.com/roots/s1calroots.. where Charnock used to make purchases of goods brought by land. Hamilton provides information about the layout of Calcutta. The ancient meander is now represented by Tolly's Nullah. This depression was larger than it is now when it covers 28 square miles. which enabled the use of the present navigable route. Chinsurah. from Robert Orme's History. Fort William. except between the Governor's party and other private merchants on points of trade. 1788. Dalhousie Square. The strip was three miles wide. And there are many convenient lodgings for factors and writers within the fort. Anonymous view. had been ousted by a land army. 40. all religions are freely tolerated . and possibly reached upto Entally in East Calcutta. Hamilton mentions 3 of 9 3/2/2012 6:03 PM . 3. and returned to Sutanati.5 x 130 cm. 2. In Sutanati and Govindapur. Colored etching with aquatint.D. London.5 cm. The Company had a garden and ponds that furnished the Governor's table with vegetables and fish. Colored etching with aquatint. Thomas Daniel. and some storehouses for the Company's goods. nor can an infantry wade through water. The Dutch at Chinsurah could not remove their factory and so surrounded it by a high brick wall and mounted guns at suitable places. while Indians had property inland.5 x 53 cm. The Roman Catholics at Bandel who had been intolerant of Protestants till the end of the 18th century erected a brick chapel in Kalikata in 1700. 1788. Hamilton noted that ". Neither the Governor's House nor the warehouse was fortified till 1696.tripod. Fort William from the land side. 9. built in 1709. looking north.5 x 53 cm. jostled by other houses. Alexander Hamilton . 6. George Lambert (attributed). CALCUTTA is built on land that slopes east from the flood bank of the Hooghly to a depression which is inundated by tides. Govindapur had a "little pyramid built as a landmark to confine the Company's colony".. Oil on canvas. Views of Calcutta #10. If the Dutch did any river training. The Armenians.5 x 53 cm. 20 x 71. Calcutta 1786. Others are of the opinion that a tamarind tree was Charnock's favorite and that his tomb was built near it. 1787. To drag field guns through a stretch of water would be still more difficult. wanted to assure himself that the new site for the English factory would be less vulnerable than the former to land forces. 40..5 x 53 cm. According to Hamilton. in Calcutta. accessible through gardens. to replace an earlier temporary structure. erected without order and in satisfaction of the convenience of their builders.
a large open pleasance called the Maidan at the center and a rearranged central business district called Laldighi. believed to have been his town residence. and the residents . Those evicted included the ancestors of such illustrious men as Rabindranath Tagore.Calcutta Diary: The Roots of Calcutta http://sankalpa. Belvedere in Alipore belongs to this period.html Chandernagore as having a "pretty little Church to hear Mass. enterprising builders were attracted more to the Garden Reach waterfront than to inland parts. the city's residential quarters. This north to south thoroughfare is still the main street of the metropolis. which is still there and in a much better state of preservation than Clive's at Dum Dum. Daniell's drawing of Buckingham House is dated 1788. But William McIntosh in 1779 felt that the Esplanade was "the only part of the city worth preserving. their roofs invariably flat. wrote Mitchell. One reason for the slow growth of areas beyond the Ditch was that till the 1753 conferment of the zamindary of the 24 Parganas. one by which pilgrims went to the temple at Kalighat. Three years after the receipt of the zamindary of the 24 Parganas. Eliza Fay called on a Mrs. the Ghoshals of Bhukailash and the Devs of Sovabazar. one north of Raj Bhawan. Calcutta had only two roads. each having its own small enclosure. James Mitchell. Mitchell mentions that they were laid out wide and straight after the shelling of the Old Fort had destroyed the haphazard and irregular constructions around it. Twining had passed Garden Reach. natural as well as artificial. Behind the building for the writers at its northwestern end was the theater. so was the new residence for the Governor. and a feeble garrison". were inadequate to prevent its being stormed. Near Job Charnock's tomb and where the tamarind tree stood." While coming up the Hooghly. called the Avenue. a member of the Council. Hastings built a home for himself in Alipore. dances and other ceremonial gatherings were held on its upper storey. supporting lofty verandahs. extended eastward from the river. Tiretta Bazar was the first public market and it started functioning in 1783. the Council House. We lack precise information on Robert Clive (Governor from 1757 to 1760 and from 1765 to 1767). noticed "that the Governor's House and the Company's store and warehouses" were "surrounded by a high wall without a moat. and that in which the Bankshall Court is located. Old Fort William fell to a country force. in spite of the temple providing a nucleus and its being part of the property of the descendants of Tipu Sultan. found the Buckingham House on the Esplanade "handsome but by no means equal to what it ought to be for a Governor-General". and on the opposite shore there was the residence of the Superintendent of the Company's botanical gardens. while contiguous Hugli stretched for two miles along the river. along the edge of which the garden itself extended. Mitchell thought the Fort could "resist a country but not a European force". the Company in 1780 leased a house built by Richard Barwell. but Ballygunge's status as part of Calcutta was uncertain till 1870. which till then had belonged to the Sabarna Roy Choudhurys. sections of which carry different names.. They were all white. Nearly all these buildings were occupied by civil and military officers of the Government. The other. which also served the purpose of a town hall. Originally. When the fort was rebuilt. as the villas on the left bank were called. who had bought it from an Englishman. 1757).tripod. The Fort took a long time to build and was completed only in 1774. Bhowanipore was developed still later. "A range of magnificent buildings. were at a little distance from the house. and a large folding gate and porter's lodge at the entrance. John's. more Britons could afford coaches. and inhabited by Hindus. The Governor's Council met at the Old Council House. and in 1780 Mrs. and the Greek Church was built in 1780. the horse-drawn coach came to Calcutta. the Deputy Governor's residence to the west. So the site of the new fort was shifted to Govindapur. as balls. Portugese. could impede the defense of the Fort. the Accountant General's Office. who arrived in 1792. formed the limit of both the city and the plain. surrounded by verdant grounds laid out in the English style." Twining missed noticing the banyan tree at the Botanics up a narrow creek. surrounded by colonnades. to which rank the Bengal Governorship had been raised in 1774. the Governor's residence and the St. with bastions planted with a few canon and a battery of 30 guns facing the river. Andrews Church. with the Ganges flowing before them. which remained unaltered for more than a century till the residential areas of Bhowanipore. The tree is presumed to have been bird-sown on a date palm around the time the Battle of Plassey was fought. including the Governor's Palace. Jews and Armenians. The latter is supposed to have been for a time the residence of Reza Khan. The natural defenses were the Salt Lake and the Hooghly. Anne's and the Armenian Church were both built in 1707. It was on the site of the present Raj Bhavan or Governor's House. a French visitor in 1789. either as their public offices or private residences. the Supreme Court House. Around 1740. Hastings who resided there. Its use was limited to the Governor and members of his Council. called Buckingham House. not only the Fort but the Governor's House and St. who visited the the place in 1748.were evicted from their homes in October 1757. while the Mayor held his court at the Old Court House. each furnished with a set of outhouses. Muslims. with many Armenian and Indian residents (the latter often seeking political asylum from inimical bureaucrats). John's Church to the south. which now houses commercial firms. running west to east. and had attained impressive proportions by the end of the 18th century. The Ditch was covered in 1804 and converted into the Circular Road. accommodation for the Company's writers and the Mayor's Court to the north. Bandel had no trade but a large population of converts to Catholicism. a new church was built in 1774 and consecrated to St. Two street names are also 18th century institutions. The building presently houses the West Bengal Government Secretariat. and when a new fort was built it was ensured that it should not be hemmed in by houses. sailing up the Hooghly. It was a large upper-roomed house not many yards from the river. "The town of Calcutta is about two miles north of the Fort". the Buckingham House. the cellars. Anne as well were destroyed. Between the Fort and the Governor's residence was the Esplanade. The house contained 19 apartments. in which the kitchen. and their fronts relieved by lofty columns. the northern section is Chitpur Road (now renamed Rabindra Sarani) and the southern section the Russa Road (nor renamed Ashutosh Mukherjee Road and Shyamaprasad Mukherjee Road). etc. who built two houses for himself. The storming of the old Fort William in 1756 led to Calcutta acquiring its most characteristic features . (end of chapter) 4 of 9 3/2/2012 6:03 PM . Rebuilt Calcutta was a compact little town arranged on the four sides of the Laldighi Tank and the garden around it. struck me as singularly beautiful. The digging of the Marhatta Ditch in 1742 was significant for defining the city's boundaries. "open. The Old Council House Street and the Old Court House Street are to west and east of BBD Bagh. Kalighat and Ballygunge were developed. The other important 18th century building is the Old Mint. describes the Esplanade as separating the Fort from the city.all Indians and no British . They were all separated from each other. which is the chief business of the French in Bengal". storerooms. built in 19th century and located on the east of the present Writer's Building. Old Fort William had provided residential accommodations to the Company's writers. In the atmosphere of great optimism that prevailed after the recovery of Calcutta and the victory of Plassey (June 23. and it is possible that it was a late construction and Hastings did not use it as his residence. is at present Bow Bazar Street. L. de Grandpre. The situation of the elegant garden houses. On its destruction and removal of the Fort to Govindapur. without any defense of great extent".com/roots/s1calroots. although he noticed that the "houses of the British scattered at a small distance from the Fort. In the 1756 fighting between the English and Siraj-ud-dowla. etc. The central section is Chowringhee (now renamed Jawaharlal Nehru Road). the Company found that the defenses of Calcutta. Thomas Twining. It was a long reach running east to west. The site is now occupied by St. Shalom Aarom Cohen as the first Jew to settle in Calcutta in 1797. Dates for the oldest temple and mosque are lacking. the Roman Catholic (Portugese) Chapel was raised to a church in 1799. and formed a very irregular area in the centre"." St. Chinsurah was a mile long. and then turning at a right angle to the south. "Handsome villas lined the left or southern bank.
XI Esplanade. in six parts.5 cm. to view like magic brought. James Baille Fraser. plate 26 from his 'Views of Calcutta and its Environs'. which sums up feelings expressed by many at this time. DISCUSSIONS: Comment # 1: Received from Home | Roots | Creative Forum | Future Vision | Stop'n Look! | Contact Us | Return to Top 5. 4. Job Charnock. and we Placed in its porch. Colored aquatint.5 cm. and reveal joyously. Calcutta. India Office Library Add Or. a gorgeous realm of gold. c. Calcutta. 21 x 44 cm. Picture Gallery: Calcutta in the 19th Century Source: 'Calcutta: City of Palaces' by J P Losty (British Libraries. Lithograph published by T Black. panoramic view of Calcutta from the Octerlony Monument. two great ports were alreadu established there. yet bitters too there be Under attractive seeming. each 21 x 32. This day at Sankraul ordered Capt. panoramic view of Calcutta from the Octerlony Monument. All glittering in the sun-beam . Coloured lithograph. And. Chittagong in the east (which 5 of 9 3/2/2012 6:03 PM . with its tombs And dazzling splendors. London. 33 x 74. Colored aquatint. while downriverfrom the Ganges. Lithograph published by T Black. the Honorable East India Company's Chief Agent in Bengal. panoramic view of Calcutta from the Octerlony Monument.tripod. 30 x 41. beheld the pomp of spires And palaces. From the gay round of pleasure.. 1835. It was trade that sent the English and other Europeans to India.5 cm. engraved F C Lewis. 26 x 53. William Prinsep. 1835. Asiatic Lithograph Press.5 cm. Excerpts from 'Calcutta: City of Palaces' by J P Losty. View of St Andrew's Church from Mission Row. But we here behold A prodigy of power. and so begins the history of that city. 1819. London. Arnold Publishers). Asiatic Lithograph Press. 1690. James Baille Fraser. An empire of the Sun. Watercolour. and the governments.Calcutta Diary: The Roots of Calcutta http://sankalpa. Shaykh Muhammad Amir. Esplanade from Chowringhee Road. Page 11: 'August 24. lithographed by Dickinson & Co.' With these depressing words from the first volume of the Fort William Factory Records. 28 x 42. 1847. View of Court House Street from the South Eastern Gate of Government House. 1819. 28 x 42. Calcutta. recorded the third and final occupation of a foothold of ground in Suttanauttee within the confines of the modern Calcutta. Lithograph published by T Black. London.5 cm 5. plate 6 from 'Fraser's Views of Calcutta and its Environs'. 10. Jumna and their tributaries came the goods of all Hindustan. 1848.. 1828-30. Coloured lithograph. A View of Writers Building. James Baille Fraser. 9. 1847. plate 24 from his 'Views of Calcutta and its Environs'. the epithet 'The City of Palaces' was first used by James Atkinson as the title of his poem published in Calcutta in 1824. in six parts. 1824-6'.. The British Library. London.5 cm. I stood a wandering stranger at the Ghaut. 11. 8. London.5 cm. Chowringhee Road from No. 28 x 42. India blooms The garden of Hesperides. 7. Entertainment during the Durga Puja. Atkinson goes on to compare the glittering European city with the surrounding squalor of the Bengali town. 1824-6'.. and it was obvious that the delta of the Ganges was the best place to establish a trading station. c. in six parts. Arnold Publishers. 1835. compiled by S. Sir Charles D'Oyly. 6.5 cm. 1819. India Office Library WD4035. Brooke to come up with his Vessel to Chutanutte where we arrived at about noon. transcending all The conquests. 1840. 28 x 42. gazing round. James Baille Fraser. lithographed by Dickinson & Co. c.5 cm. Sir Charles D'Oyly. Drink again The frothy draught. 1848. Bengal was the richest province in India. a contrast which became ever more obvious as the 19th century progressed. May taste its sweets. 1847.5 cm 2. This will give the flavour: . of old. towering peerlessly. plate 13 from 'Fraser's Views of Calcutta and its Environs'.html DISCUSSIONS: Comment # 1: Received from Home | Roots | Creative Forum | Future Vision | Stop'n Look! | Contact Us | Return to Top 4. luxuriate on thy bane. London.com/roots/s1calroots. Colored aquatint. Frederick Fiebig. Frederick Fiebig. why refrain! Thou'rt on the brink of death. each 21 x 32. 1824-6'. Colored aquatint. 4151. Although references to the 'palaces' of Calcutta are found from as early as 1780. plate 22 from 'Fraser's Views of Calcutta and its Environs'. plate 14 from 'Fraser's Views of Calcutta and its Environs'. 1819. London. Coloured lithograph. Watercolour. but found ye place in a deplorable condition. 12. nothing being left for our present accommodation & ye Rains falling day & night. engraved by R Havell. c . each 21 x 32. We are forced to take ourselves to boats which considering the season of the year is very unhealthy. Government House and Esplanade Row from the Course. Calcutta.5 cm.. lithographed by Dickinson & Co. Asiatic Lithograph Press.. Mukherjee Click picture to enlarge Description of Picture 1. Frederick Fiebig. When the Portugese arrived in Bengal about 1518. A View of the West Side of Tank Square. plate 20 from his 'Views of Calcutta and its Environs'. Sir Charles D'Oyly. 3. engraved by T Fielding. 1848.. Suspension Bridge at Alipore over Tolly's Nullah. For us in half a century. 1824-6'. 23 x 43. engraved by R Havell Junr.
engaged in the production and export of cotton textiles..1690 . The Roy Choudhury's were at Halisahar . Azimushan later became Emperor Jahandar Shah in 1712. five years after Charnock's death. we order that when the apprentices have served their times they be styled writers.' In the factories they lived a kind of collegiate life. obtained from Azimushan while he was still the Viceroy in Bengal. seated in strict order of seniority. While Charnock was reporting to the Company's Indian headquarters. Tidal creeks . and Suttanutte. Adapted from "The Calcuttan" (page 31 . transferred themselves downriver to the site of modern Calcutta.46 km north of Calcutta . when Akbar absorbed the province into the Moghul Empire. Calcutta. Most of the delta or the southern part of the demesne was too marshy for cultivation. he had saved a widow from being burnt on her husband's funeral pyre. Charnock and the factors fell foul of Shaista Khan. and the merchants having served their times be styled senior merchants. much had happened before the English leased the three villages from the Roy Choudhurys. which changed to Thakur (rendered into English as Tagore). where an important market for cotton. and its Christian survivors were transferred to Agra as slaves. where an indigent and nearly ostracized Brahmin family lived as a priest for the fisherfolk. the locality known as Entally derives its name from hatal pneumatophores which grew there. 1991.html did not control the Ganges trade) and Satgaon in the west. both of whom were Muslims. The spread of cultivation southward was slow and till the end of the 18th century. with subordinate establishments at Cossimbazar for silk and indigo.was the last village on the south bank.1990". The family's surname in the 1700s was Kushary. There was a large Armenian community at Chinsurah. further east. but was 6 of 9 3/2/2012 6:03 PM . was more receptive to the company's pleadings. and thus earned the name of Laldighi.. and entered it following the visit of Sir Thomas Roe to the court of Jahangir.66 km south of Calcutta . But they were mainly traders. and he governed from Rajmahal on the Ganga.com/roots/s1calroots. It was small and thinly populated. In 1632 Hooghly was captured by the Moghuls after a three month's siege. having produced generations of members who attained eminence. The Roy Choudhury's could collect rent only from those areas which had come under cultivation. Charnock made her his wife. Information about the population of Kalikata and their vocations around 1690 is scant. and the factors having served their times be styled merchants. who were also Brahmins.branches off. families of Bysacks and Seths. which turned red during the colour-sprinkling festival of Holi each spring. however. ending all serious Portugese economic activity in Bengal. notably the Halders of Kalighat. They befriended Humayun when he was a refugee at the Persian Court during the middle decades of the 16th century and followed him back to India. The expulsion of the Portugese from the Hugli and all Moghul territories created an opportunity for the English to move in. Their home country was ruled by the Ottoman Sultans of Turkey and the Safavid Shahs of Persia. they often found employment in civil posts and occasionally in the army. Unlike the Europeans. The English East India Company had been a latecomer in trade with India.. the most southerly of the three villages.tripod. It was from Barisha that the Roy Choudhury's leased out three east bank villages of Sutanati. presumably from all the three villages. who replaced Shaista Khan. but it is likely that it was Khoja Sarhad Khan. the Armenians had little political identity. To the east of the kutchery was a tank. and when the writers have served their times they be styled factors. and lived with her till her death at Sutanati. the tolerance of Akbar's successors for the presence of the European infidels was easily upset. Madras and Vizagapatnam before the Company came to Balasore. Kulpi . Man Singh was the first Moghul Viceroy.38) by Samaren Roy. separated the villages from each other. above the point whence the most easterly distributary . In upcountry Bihar. they shifted to Gopalpore in the Hooghly district. There were also other Brahmins and Kayasthas settled there.Calcutta Diary: The Roots of Calcutta http://sankalpa. publishers. Page 13: The Company divided its servants into ranks: 'Knowing that a distinction of titles is. The name of the Company's pleader is buried in a mass of correspondence. Akbar demanded in return that the Portugese at Hooghly should keep the eastern seas free of the renegade Portugese and Arakanese pirates from Chittagong and the Arkan who infested them. with arrack punch and Shiraz wine to drink . Being at home in Persian. The adoption of the new surname erased the stigma associated with a polluting event. DISCUSSIONS: Comment # 1: Received from Home | Roots | Creative Forum | Future Vision | Stop'n Look! | Contact Us | Return to Top 6. and after a brief fight in 1686-87. who became a prime factor for the Armenians in Calcutta after receiving a charter to trade in 1688. and a temporary town at Betor on the west bank had sprung up to service the traders during the season. one of Calcutta's present rail termini. and the Portugese used to send river boats to bring down the goods from Satgaon. and it is debatable where and when he learned English sufficiently to serve as interpreter to John Surman's mission to Delhi in 1715. The memory of one of these tidal channels lives on in the name of 'Creek Row' . Rupa & Co.. had a kutchery there to collect rents. then at Madras. to the villages of Gobindpore on a slight eminence above the river. However. Kalikata and Govindapur to the English East India Company in 1698. there was a change in the governorship of Bengal. An English factory was established at Golghat in Hugli town in 1650. Khoja Sarhad was a late arrival. because their fishing clientele addressed them as such. as is still often supposed. the Portugese received permission from the Emperor Akbar to found a settlement at the town of Hooghly. Bengal was intermittently a part of the Delhi Sultanate till 1580. but destined to give its name to the whole city. "Calcutta: Society and Change . Trading centers were established at Surat. and about 1550 some of its Indian merchants. as the two were distinct places even in the 15th century. and they prepared to bring their ships further up while enjoying the Emperor's goodwill. Betor was largely abandoned and its trade transferred to Suttanutte across the river. Mangrove swamps extended to the neighborhood of Sealdah. till 1632 selling its produce to the Portugese ships anchored at Betor on the opposite bank.a lane extending eastward from Subodh Mullick (formerly Wellington) Square. where it has remained till now. Fisherfolk lived at Govindapur. Thakur means lord and is the honorific of priestly groups in Bengal. and the Portugese failure to fulfill their part of the bargain drew the vengeance of Shah Jahan upon them. in many respects. The Roy Choudhury's.till the middle of the 16 century. an ancient town originally on a branch of the river Hooghly (itself the western-most branch of the Ganges delta) about 30 miles upriver from Calcutta. and the influx continued. necessary. the then Moghul Governor. On his second trip in 1612. 10 km south of the city. which was also the language of the Moghul Court. with meals taken in a common hall. Man Singh entrusted the collection of rent in lower Bengal to the Sabarna Roy Choudhury family. The name Calcutta (Kalikata) has nothing to do with the temple at Kalighat. But they were Christians and had little in common with their rulers. It was definitely the most populous and prosperous. or red tank. Satgaon's importance was diminished by the gradual silting up of its river. as he acted as a pleader as well as interpreter in 1698 and 1715. when both places are mentioned by the Bengali poet Bipradas . The bend of the river just below was its last easily navigable stretch. However. His standing with the Moghul princes was good enough to enable the English Company to secure the permanent leases of the three villages in 1698. Job Charnock had served at Hajipur and Patna before moving into Hugli. Ibrahim Khan. Further upstream the river shallowed. About 1575. Later. Page 16: Between Suttanutte and Gobindpore was another village. but apparently with groaning tables before them. Meanwhile at Hugli.called the Bhagirathi in the upper reaches and the Hooghly in the lower . the company was expelled from Bengal. or where spinning and weaving produced items which could be subjected to levies. then to Birati and finally to Barisha. the principal trade of Bengal itself. Khoja Sarhad was a shipowner and merchant. and of land-owning castes in Bihar and Uttar Pradesh. Sutanati was probably the more ancient of these three habitations. was developing. who are still illustrious. at Patna for indigo and at Hajipur for saltpetre. in 1690 the least important of the three. later filled up and obliterated.
at Dakhineswar. Their ancestor. who had an English father. During the 192 years of Portugese presence at Hugli. and the Madrassah at Calcutta. the Mullicks and the Dutts. and returned with the idea of progress. did not usually travel the ten kilometers to experience the amenities that were becoming available at Calcutta. The ditch served only one purpose: to earn the English residents of the city the nickname 'Ditchers'. The Portugese after 1632.Calcutta Diary: The Roots of Calcutta http://sankalpa. The other groups became numerically weaker. were descendants of migrants. then 'Topasses'. The ditch was not even a continuous moat. of course. they faced a kind of ostracism. Other legendary figures include Gouri Sen. Kalighat and Tollygunge . who was the first person from the city to travel to Europe at the end of the 18th century. Khoja Sarhad was not the first of his people to come to Calcutta.were beyond the area enclosed by the Ditch.who were Pirali Brahmins . the family crossed the river to Halisahar. numerically matching each other. Even after Shobha Singh's rebellion in 1696. What about the English between 1690 and 1740? The best nomenclature for them would be Charnockites. had looked after the treasury at Satgaon during Jehangir's reign.the last to enumerate people by castes . and the Dutch after 1824. Till the late 19th century. was found in 1884. son of Azimushan (Jahandar Shah). and at Pathuriaghata and Jorasanko after 1760. Feringhees and Eurasian at last. Raghu dacoit raided and hacked an arm off one of them. The Surman mission was to Farrukhsiyar's court and commanded the good offices of Khoja Sarhad.html murdered the following year. but now within. separated from each other and surrounded by Indian landowners. who were reputed to be beautiful. he chose not to have a house in the city. Old Maps of Calcutta Source: 'Calcutta: City of Palaces' by J P Losty (British Libraries. The Oudh entourages. Similarly. Henry Derozio could have been of Portugese descent.Brahmins and Kayasthas were the two largest. but not within it. 21 kn nearer to Calcutta. then two kilometers outside the city limits. four miles south of the Marhatta Ditch. In any case. However. Birati and then Barisha. they began to build a house (the construction lasted from 1743 to 1860!). Soon after. Armenians became an important constituent of Calcutta. the Dutch brought Malay women. the Mitras. and which might have existed in the previous century. who settled at Barisha after leasing the three villages over to the Company. Dakshinranjan Mukherjee and Ishwarchandra Vidyasagar. When Shahjahan marched to sack the Portugese at Hugli. Under the new firman issued by Farrukhsiyar. for the debates were mainly between the Banias. Mukherjee Part 1: The maps in PART 1 record the progressive growth of Calcutta in the following phases: 7 of 9 3/2/2012 6:03 PM . The family later built a house in east Calcutta Learned Brahmins and reputed priests came much later to the city. became dispersed. on Purna Das Road in Ballygunge. came into existence through conversions and intermarriages. introduced North Indian music and dance to Calcutta. surgeon accompanying the mission. The concession put the English Company at a decisive advantage vis-a-vis their French and Dutch rivals. the rank to which the subedars were elevated. Dwarkanath and Prasanna Tagore. Krishnachandra Ray used to travel the 116 km from Krishnanagar to meet Sir William Jones. The misuse of this right was later to lead to friction with the Nawab Nazims. it had armored vehicles for conveyance and bore a different name. There is evidence that Brahmins resisted the attractions of settling down in Charnock's city.Rammohun Roy. did not prove to be as secure as the Roys had hoped.thanks to Khoja Sarhad . for it was alleged that the aroma of cooked beef had entered their nostrils! All temples. they sought the comparative security of their present residence.found a refuge at Govindapur from 1700. except for an annual payment of Rs 3000. Next to the Armenians. the Suvarna Baniks were an important local trading community. imperial or local. After the scare caused by the appearance of the Bargis. separated from each other stretched along 25 km. marched from Bengal to claim the throne and rule till 1719. They were attracted to Calcutta as it was the only flourishing and nearest urban center. at Chinsurah. however. Tarachand Chakravarty. The Roy Choudhury's. This fact influenced the Bengal Renaissance movement in its early stages. The temple built by the 18th century dacoit is still there. Immigration from the villages during the 19th century so altered the population pattern that by the 1911 census . as advisers on Hindu law before the courts. Behala. home of the Roy Choudhury's before they settled at Gopalpur. but their goods were also freed from duties. The Bargis were bought off by Nawab Nazim Alivardi Khan. Arnold Publishers). Alexander Skinner. and became 'Roys' as a result. the Navaratna temple built by Gobindaram Mitra and the older Chitteswari temple . They moved again. The Sookea's probably resided at Sutanati or Howrah. and no longer wielded their earlier influence.except for a temple built by Gouri Sen in Burrabazar.com/roots/s1calroots. Their neighbours. towards the close of the 18th century. only the warehouse was provided with fortifications and guns of a sort whose efficacy was severely hampered by allowing haphazard private constructions around what was called Fort William. but he preferred an India identity. His task was made easier by William Hamilton. Brahmin reluctance to live in Calcutt may have prompted Warren Hastings to locate the Sanskrit College at Varanasi. compiled by S. who had died in 1630. who remained ambiguous on burning of widows. the Tarkabagish. Murshidabad and the Oudh entourages. Of the few who did. did little to convert this compact estate into a defensible position. where the Armenians had a garden throughout the 18th century. The Armenians and others were excluded from this description. the families of the Dhars of Posta (Burrabazar). Another advantage was that from 1698 . a Chatterjee. The English. Ishwarchandra Vidyasagar and Ramkrishna Paramahamsa. the English were conferred not only the right to reside and trade in Moghul territory. became a soldier of fortune and the cavalry unit he raised became a part of the Indian Army. His senior contemporary. whereas the three settlements of their rivals stretched along 25 km. this influenced the Bengal Renaissance to a great extent. this time to Madhyamgram. Banik pupils outnumbered Brahmins and Kayasthas in the city schools. as both interpreter as well as negotiator. (end of chapter) DISCUSSIONS: Comment # 1: Received from Home | Roots | Creative Forum | Future Vision | Stop'n Look! | Contact Us | Return to Top 7. became powerful in their own ways and founded houses like Cossipore and Jorasanko Rajas that remained important till recent times. The only defensive work undertaken was the digging of the Marhatta Ditch in the 1740's when the Bargis had appeared in the Burdwan and Birbhum areas.tripod. and to this day they are known as Calcuttans. by which English geologitsts designated a rock which till then had not been found anywhere. A tombstone for Sookea's wife. and generally did not form part of the city's life. and as residents in the 19th century . but did not. The Tagores . Raghu had threatened to to pay a visit again. the Behala Roys. For example.the English owned a continuous tract of land 12 km long and 4 km wide through a permanent lease. Farrukhsiyar. The Muslim community in Calcutta had mostly drifted in from Mysore (Tipu Sultan's descendants). They worked as cashiers for Clive and Hastings. neither the ditch nor the Fort William proved any obstacle to Siraj-ud-dowla in 1756. after 1774. curing Farrukhsiyar of a disease which till then had resisted treatment. however. were Mirza Abu Taleb. although the reformist leadership remained with the Brahmins: Rammohun Roy. and became a leading figure in Bengal Renaissance in early 19th century. a community referred to as Portugese first.
by Samaren Roy. and scanned from 'Calcutta: City of Palaces'. . Note: The four pictures (which have been placed on one page to facilitate comparisons) total approximately 90 kB. Sentence-case) Q4. 1690 (true or false)? (in words.. The Hooghly has been an important waterway for more than 3000 years (true or false)? (in words. and may take a while to load.. Kalikata and _____________ (hint: it is also the more ancient of these three habitations) (in words.Calcutta Diary: The Roots of Calcutta http://sankalpa. Bengal in the 18th century (with an inset showing the important centers along the Hooghly River) #2.. Conjectural map of Calcutta at the time of the British advent. Please be patient. (back cover).com/roots/s1calroots. lowercase) Q3. PART 2: This section is an ongoing compilation of maps relevant to the historical explorations of Calcutta: #1. Sentence-case) Q5.get set.1757 > Phase 2:1757 . In early 19th century.html Phase 1:1690 . but first.. Henry Derozio became a leading figure in ________ ________. click on the link to 'view' the 'answer'.. Job Charnock chose the site for Calcutta on the east bank of the Hooghly on August 24. 1690 -1990. Sentence-case) Your score this time: percent Please tell us if you have any inputs to improve this pop quiz.time!!! ready.engraved by M M Woollaston. taken from 'Calcutta: Society and Change. Thank you..End of contributions ------------------------ Quiz . 'Introduction'. lowercase) Q2. Home | Roots | Creative Forum | Future Vision | Stop'n Look! | Contact Us | Return to Top -----------------------.tripod. (in words.1798 > Phase 3: 1798 . you must enter your name please: Q1. by J P Losty. (in words.GO! If you do not know any of the answers. The epithet 'The City of Palaces' was first used as the title of a poem by ___________... The three habitations that the Roy Choudhury's leased out to the English East India Company in 1698 were Govindapur. Click the enlargement button on the left if you wish to see these maps. 1825' .1858 The fourth map is a 'Plan of Calcutta. An Appeal: 8 of 9 3/2/2012 6:03 PM .
37699.in/real-estate-agents-bhiwadi Kailash Mansarovar 2012 Ultimate pilgrimage yatra land & Helicopter Package+919810175556 pilgrimageindia.html If you find our presentations not up to your expectations. Meanwhile . Real Estate Agents Make your deal hassle free with top Real Estate Agents & Dealers. More power to you! | Home | Roots | Creative Forum | Future Vision | Stop'n Look! | Contact Us | | eEducation | eBusiness | ePublications | eNGO Network | Pot Luck | Join Us | © 2000 Sankalpa Trust Spain 6N/7D SOTC Package Madrid & Barcelona @ Just Rs.com We shall succeed only with your active participation in these processes.Calcutta Diary: The Roots of Calcutta http://sankalpa. or if you do not see the article/contribution(s) which may have been archived due to paucity of disc space. please contact us/use the feedback form.org 9 of 9 3/2/2012 6:03 PM . Hurry Book Now. or mailto:sankalpatrust@hotmail. and your own contributions for inclusion in this page. Free Rail Travel*.com/Spain getit. Please send in your comments about our presentations..com/roots/s1calroots. Sotcholidays.tripod..
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