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Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav: Delhi’s British-era execution room ‘Phansi Ghar’ gets a new look

History buffs will get the opportunity to learn more about the sacrifices made by freedom fighters who were executed in the two-story, British-era “Phansi Ghar” on the grounds of the Delhi Assembly. August 9 saw the opening of the “Phansi Ghar” and the Corona Warriors Memorial by Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal. On the grounds of the Assembly, close to the entrance gates, it is situated behind the statue of Vitthal Bhai Patel.

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Small bricks and an iron gate have been used to give the exterior of the execution chamber the appearance of a jail. Additionally, sculptures of the liberation warriors Bhagat Singh, Sukhdev, and Rajguru are located in the execution room. It contains two nooses with lift controls that were used to hang inmates.

On the left side of the Assembly hall in the main building is where you’ll find the execution room. Visitors can also view some of the captives’ belongings and the rope that was used to hang them.

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A small gallery on the upper level features photographs of several liberation warriors, including Ashfaqullah Khan, Hemu Kalani, Kartar Singh Sarabha, Dinesh Gupta, Khudiram Bose, Gulab Singh Saini, and Umaji Naik.

Delhi Assembly Speaker Ram Niwas Goel stated that – during British rule – prisoners of freedom held in the Red Fort were taken to the “Phansi Ghar” for trial and execution. He claimed the initially-locked “Phansi Ghar” was discovered in 2018.

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“It was a two-storey room but the upper floor was not accessible and was closed by a wall. When we broke the wall, we found that it was an execution room having two nooses,” Goel said.

It was decided to restore this execution room, he said.

“We did not temper with anything in the ‘Phansi Ghar’ during the restoration process. Here, we all can see how our freedom fighters sacrificed their lives for the nation,” he added.

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The remodelling project was initiated by the Public Works Department (PWD) in September 2021. The goal of opening the “Phansi Ghar” and the “Corona Warrior Memorial” before Independence Day, according to Goel, has been accomplished.

He stated that anybody will be able to visit these locations whenever the Delhi Assembly is not in session. The “Corona War Memorial” was constructed to pay tribute to the Covid warriors, including medical professionals such as paramedics, teachers, sanitation workers, and nurses, who made extraordinary contributions to society during the epidemic.

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The memorial has the names of 31 Covid warriors, who made the supreme sacrifice during the pandemic, inscribed on a stone slab. Above it is a sculpture depicting a doctor, a nurse, a security officer and a sanitation employee.

(With PTI inputs)

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