The Curzon Gate, a fine colonial archway, Bardhaman, West Bengal - honoring lord Curzon of British Raj

Curzon Gate, 1942, Bardhaman, WB,

Curzon Gate, Bardhaman, WB,

The historical town of Bardaman of Purba Bardhaman district, West Bengal has innumerable monuments of grandeur and fine architectural style and  any visitor to this place will be talen  a couple of centuries back in time to know about them.The Curzon Gate is not only an important landmark, but also a typical  colonial structure   that personifies simplicity without compromising on elegance. Presently, it is being maintained by the PWD, West Bengal government.

three female figurines, Currzon Gate,Bardhaman, WB, pinrest com.

With a view to honoring the state visit by Lord Curzon of the British Raj, the ruler Maharajah Bijoy Chand Mahatab had  a  majestic archway built in 1903. This archway, a towering one and one km from the royal palace, is the cynosure of this town. Standing at the junction of  Bijoy Chand Road and Grand Trunk Road, no person can get away from  fascinating lure of this colonial  archway, in particular, at night when it is  well lit. The state visit of Lord Curzon to this place was an important occasion for grand celebration and the Maharajah never wanted to miss this rare occasion; it was a pomp and glittery  one commensurate with the highest British official. 

The tall archway was named after lord Curzon and was built by masons specially brought from Italy. supported by eight circular columns the gate has three female figurines atop the structure  with swords, boats, and sheaves of corn in their hands, implying progress in agriculture and commerce. One can see  twenty-one circles, each with an  illustration  After  becoming a part of the Indian Union when India got independence in August 1947, the name of the gate was changed to  Bijoy Toran in 1974; but it is still referred to as the Curzon Gate (Karjon Gate in Bengali).
Lord Curzon:
Viceroy lord Curzon,British India,

Lord Curzon,(George Nathaniel Curzon),- (born January 11, 1859, Kedleston Hall, Derbyshire, England- died March 20, 1925, London), was a  popular British statesman. As the  viceroy of India (1898–1905), and foreign secretary (1919–24),  during his tenure in the British Raj, he was a key player in  British policy making. While in India, he took active interest in preserving the old monuments. When the Taj in Agra suffered damages during the great war of independence in 1857, Curzon  undertook the restoration of the Taj Mahal  with care and devotion.  He was the first man to have established in 1905 the famous Naldhera Golf Course near (25 km) Shimla. Located in a hilly country, its old vintage charm is quite  irresistible. It is a nine hole course set on a ridge in a scenic area surrounded by  tall cedar trees, etc. Mesmerized by its beauty, he named his second daughter Naldehra. Lord Curzon was the one who was particular about erecting a fitting memorial to Sir K. Seshadri Iyer (1 June 1845 -13 September 1901), the maker of modern Mysore in that state. He was a renowned Diwan of Mysore who introduced many reforms during his diiwanship (1883 to 1901) including the Sivasamudram Power project to produce electricity. When Travancore Princely state (Kerala)  was in chaos after the demise of the ruler, Curzon  urged Sir C.P. Ramasamy Aiyar, a legal luminary to take the diwanship and set things right in the administration of the state. 

However, Lord Curzon got a bad rap when he portioned  Bengal into East and West (October 1905) provinces based on religion. His contention was it was done  for administrative convenience and not on religion. The Indian national  leaders were highly critical of this division of Bengal. The British pride and heritage had a hold on him till his death.