Ujjayanta Palace

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Coordinates: 23°30′04″N 91°09′57″E / 23.5010°N 91.1657°E / 23.5010; 91.1657

The Ujjayanta Palace (Nuyungma in Kokborok language) is a museum and the former palace of the Kingdom of Tripura situated in Agartala, which is now the capital of the Indian state of Tripura. The palace was constructed between 1899 and 1901 by Maharaja Radha Kishore Manikya Debbarma and stands on the banks of two lakes surrounded by gardens inspired by the Mughal style . It was the home of the ruling Manikya dynasty until Tripura's merger into India in October 1949. The palace was purchased from the royal family by the Government of Tripura in 1972–73 for Rs. 2.5 million, and used to house the State Legislative Assembly until July 2011. Ujjayanta Palace is now a State Museum and it primarily showcases the lifestyle, arts, culture, tradition and utility crafts of communities residing in northeast India, along with a lot of stone sculptures, coinage of the Manikya dynasty and some other artefacts.

Ujjayanta Palace
Nuyungma
Uajjayanta Palace.jpg
The Royal palace of Tripura
Established1901 (1901)
LocationAgartala, Tripura, India
TypeState Museum
ArchitectSir Alexander Martin (Martin and Burn Co.)
Kingdom of Tripura
Part of History of Tripura
Maha Manikyac. 1400–1431
Dharma Manikya I1431–1462
Ratna Manikya I1462–1487
Pratap Manikya1487
Vijaya Manikya I1488
Mukut Manikya1489
Dhanya Manikya1490–1515
Dhwaja Manikya1515–1520
Deva Manikya1520–1530
Indra Manikya I1530–1532
Vijaya Manikya II1532–1563
Ananta Manikya1563–1567
Udai Manikya1567–1573
Joy Manikya I1573–1577
Amar Manikya1577–1585
Rajdhar Manikya I1586–1600
Ishwar Manikya1600
Yashodhar Manikya1600–1623
Interregnum1623–1626
Kalyan Manikya1626–1660
Govinda Manikya1660–1661
Chhatra Manikya1661–1667
Govinda Manikya1661–1673
Rama Manikya1673–1685
Ratna Manikya II1685–1693
Narendra Manikya1693–1695
Ratna Manikya II1695–1712
Mahendra Manikya1712–1714
Dharma Manikya II1714–1725
Jagat Manikya1725–1729
Dharma Manikya II1729
Mukunda Manikya1729–1739
Joy Manikya II1739–1744
Indra Manikya II1744–1746
Vijaya Manikya III1746–1748
Lakshman Manikya1740s/1750s
Interregnum1750s–1760
Krishna Manikya1760–1783
Rajdhar Manikya II1785–1806
Rama Ganga Manikya1806–1809
Durga Manikya1809–1813
Rama Ganga Manikya1813–1826
Kashi Chandra Manikya1826–1829
Krishna Kishore Manikya1829–1849
Ishan Chandra Manikya1849–1862
Bir Chandra Manikya1862–1896
Radha Kishore Manikya1896–1909
Birendra Kishore Manikya1909–1923
Kirit Bikram Kishore Manikya1947–1949
1949–1978 (titular)
Kirit Pradyot Manikya1978–present (titular)
Tripura monarchy data
Manikya dynasty (Royal family)
Agartala (Capital of the kingdom)
Ujjayanta Palace (Royal residence)
Neermahal (Royal residence)
Rajmala (Royal chronicle)
Tripura Buranji (Chronicle)
Chaturdasa Devata (Family deities)

HistoryEdit

Tripura claims to be one of the oldest princely states of ancient India. The royal line of Tripura began during the reign of Maharaja Maha Manikya, who was crowned in 1400 AD, and was the first ruler under the royal title of Manikya. Ujjayanta Palace was built in 1862, 10 km (6 mi) away from Agartala, by King Ishan Chandra Manikya (1849–1862). It was devastated by the Assam earthquake of 12 June 1897.[1] The palace was rebuilt in the heart of Agartala city by Maharaja Radha Kishore Manikya in 1899–1901, at a cost of 10 lakh (1 million) rupees. It was built by Martin and Burn Co.,[2] and served as the model of the Maharajah's palace in Tintin and the Cigars of the Pharaoh.[citation needed]

 
Main promenade leading to the palace

As state assembly buildingEdit

Upon the merger of the Kingdom of Tripura with India in 1949, royal properties were nationalised. The main building along with the area around the palace was purchased from the royal family by the Tripura government in 1972–73.[2] It housed the Tripura Legislative Assembly until July 2011 when the assembly moved to a new location 6 km (3.7 mi) north of Agartala.[3]

As state museumEdit

The museum was given seismic retrofitting to prevent possible earthquake damage,[4] and the museum was inaugurated by the Vice-President of India Mohammad Hamid Ansari on 25 September 2013.[5][6]

Early in the museum's history, controversy erupted over the state government's proposed move to change the name of Ujjayanta Palace to Tripura State Museum. The Indigenous Nationalist Party of Twipra (INPT) has written to Vice-President, Hamid Ansari, protesting that the name of the museum should reflect the history and heritage of the region.[7][8] Pradyut Bikram Kishore Debbarma, the titular king of Tripura said, "The palace is a historical spot. It doesn’t belong to the members of the erstwhile royal family alone, neither does it solely belongs to the government. It belongs to Tripura and somebody in the government can’t suddenly impose a decision to change its name".[9] The government decided to keep the original name of Ujjayanta Palace and to build a statue of Maharaj Radha Kishore Manikya on the museum premises.[10]

 
A panoramic view of the palace.

DesignEdit

The Ujjayanta Palace compound covers an area of approximately 1 km2 (250 acres) and includes public rooms such as the throne room, durbar hall, library and reception hall.[11] The buildings and grounds cover 800 acres (3.2 km2) in the heart of Agartala. The neoclassical palace was designed by Sir Alexander Martin of the Martin and Burn Company. The two-storied palace has three large domes, the largest of which is 86 ft (26 m) high, and which rests atop a four-storied central tower. The architecture shows a mix of influences: Mughal, Roman and British[2] There are two large artificial ponds on either side of the garden which is decorated with pools and fountains.

Several Hindu temples occupy plots adjacent to Ujjayanta Palace, dedicated to Lakshmi Narayan, Uma-Maheshwari, Durga and Jagannath.[11]

GalleryEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "Historic Earthquakes". Earthquake.usgs.gov. Retrieved 2 August 2016.
  2. ^ a b c Sujit Chakraborty (24 September 2013). "Tripura's royal mansion to house northeast's biggest museum". Newindianexpress.com. Retrieved 1 August 2016.
  3. ^ "Tripura Assembly building inaugurated". Telegraphindia.com. 23 July 2011. Retrieved 2 August 2016.
  4. ^ Supratim Bhowmik; et al. "Retrofitting of heritage building "Ujjayanta Palace" in Agartala – a case study". Academia.edu. Retrieved 2 August 2016.
  5. ^ "India renovates heritage building". English.cctv.com. 22 July 2009. Retrieved 2 August 2016.
  6. ^ "Northeast India's biggest museum to open on Sep 25". Firstpost.com. 27 August 2013. Retrieved 2 August 2016.
  7. ^ Sekhar Datta (20 September 2013). "History finds royal quarters". Telegraphindia.com. Retrieved 2 August 2016.
  8. ^ Press Trust of India (17 September 2013). "Tribals protest renaming of Tripura palace". business-standard.com. Retrieved 1 August 2016.
  9. ^ K Anurag (23 September 2013). "Tripura govt relents to mass protests against renaming of palace". Rediff.com. Retrieved 2 August 2016.
  10. ^ "Tripura museum to retain name of Ujjayanta Palace". The Times of India. 24 September 2013. Retrieved 2 August 2016.
  11. ^ a b "Ujjayanta Palace, Agartala". gobibo.com. Retrieved 2 August 2016.

External linksEdit

Video of Ujjayanta Palace