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Posted at: Jul 21, 2019, 5:54 PM; last updated: Jul 21, 2019, 8:59 PM (IST)

Renaming of Bengal rly station after Batukeshwar Dutt brings smiles in Punjab

Renaming of Bengal rly station after Batukeshwar Dutt brings smiles in Punjab
Bihar CM Nitish Kumar pays tribute to Batukeshwar Dutt on the occasion of his birth anniversary, in Patna. — PTI file

Shubhadeep Choudhury
Tribune News Service
Kolkata, July 21

The Union government’s decision to name the Bardhaman Railway Station of West Bengal after the revolutionary freedom fighter Batukeshwar Dutt has brought smiles in the faces of people in far off Punjab.

“Batukeshwar Dutt stood beside Bhagat Singh in every turn of the latter’s life, including the bombing incident of 1929 which they had carried out together. I am delighted that the station has been named after Dutt,” Kiranjit Singh Sandhu, Bhagat Singh’s nephew, told this reporter over phone.

JNU professor Chaman Lal, reputed to be an expert on Bhagat Singh, also talked about the camaraderie between Bhagat Singh and Batukeshwar Dutt.

“When Bhagat Singh’s friend Joydev Gupta arranged some clothes to be sent to him in Lahore jail, Bhagat Singh asked Gupta to send clothes to Batukeshwar Dutt as well. Bhagat Singh told Gupta that otherwise he would not be wearing the clothes sent for his use,” Chaman Lal, who also taught in Panjab University, said.

Lal, whose book “Understanding Bhagat Singh” is considered a must read for people doing research on the martyred freedom fighter, said that had Bhagat Singh’s mother been alive, she would have been very happy to note the recognition coming in the way of Dutt.

“From Punjab, she (Bhagat Singh’s mother Vidyavati Devi) had come over to Delhi and stayed at the AIIMS to nurse Dutt who was admitted there before he passed away on July 20, 1965,” Chaman Lal said.

In deference to Dutt’s last wish, he was cremated at Hussainiwala near Ferozepur in Punjab where the bodies of his comrades Bhagat Singh, Rajguru and Sukhdev were also cremated many years before.

“While he continued to live, his best friend Bhagat Singh was executed – this used to fill my father with remorse. He wanted his body to be cremated at Hussainiwala so that he can join Bhagat Singh in his last journey”, Bharati Dutta, Batukeshwar Dutt’s daughter, told this reporter from her Patna home.

Union Minister of State of Home Nityanand Rai, former Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Chauhan and Union Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad visited Bharati Dutta’s residence yesterday to pay respect to Batukeshwar Dutt on his death anniversary.

“Later I learnt that an announcement had been made regarding naming the Bardhaman station after my father. It is certainly a happy occasion for me. My father was born in a village in Bardhaman district in 1910,” Bharati Dutt, who was on the staff of a college in Patna, said.

“The present generation of Bhagat Singh’s family and I maintain close touch. They had come to Patna when I got married”, Bharati said.

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