History of Itachuna Rajbari
Itachuna Rajbari is also referred as Bargee Danga, a term derived from the word Bargee. Bargee was the name given to the Maratha warriors by the Bengalis. During a phase in the Indian history, the Marathas repeatedly used to attack Bengal for collecting Chauth, which referred to one fourth of the tax to be paid by the Nawab of Bengal, Odisha and Bihar. It was after the accession of throne by Aurangzeb when the Mughal dynasty began encountering downfall. From 1742 to 1752, Bhaskar Pandit and Raghuji Bhosle guided the Bargees for the attack and Katwa, located near Hooghly, became the early centre. Later the centre was shifted to Medinipur. Although after the assassination of Mir Habib, the Maratha warriors ceased their attacks, they attained control over Odisha. Consequently, numerous Maratha Bargees settled in Bengal, starting their own trade and gathering abundant wealth. The Kundans, presently known as Kundus, were one group of such Maratha warriors who also followed the same. The ancestors of Shri Safallya Narayan Kundu, belonging to the same family, constructed Itachuna Rajbari in the year 1766. The Rajbari however failed to flourish further owing to the abolishment of Raj-culture according to the policy of Government of India.
Structure of Itachuna Rajbari
Itachuna Rajbari has a magnanimous and opulent structure having five mahals echoing the rich legacy and affluence of the family. The five mahals of Itachuna Rajbari include Andar Mahal for ladies, Guest House, Kitchen House, Ballet Dancing Hall and Courthouse. Each of these is surrounded by long corridors and doors separating one mahal from the other. The Ballet Dancing Hall, also known as Naatch Ghar has captivating beauty especially due to the presence of a beautiful chandelier. Age old hand-drawn fans are also mounted on the ceiling. The Andar Mahal premises houses the Thakur Dalan where Shreedhar Jeeu, the family deity, is installed. Prayers are offered to the deity four times a day along with mass gatherings in the lavish courtyard occasionally. The green area behind the mansion is called Khamar Bari and there is also a wall bound pond known as Khidki Pukur. The roof top terrace in the palace connects all the five mahals and also offers a panoramic view of the dazzling sun setting behind the farmlands. At night Itachuna Rajbari presents a mesmerizing moonlit or starry sky to the visitors.
Tourism in Itachuna Rajbari
The inheritors of Itachuna Rajbari namely Shri Dhruva Narayan, Shri Rabindra Narayan and Shri Basav Narayan Kundu later decided to restore the erstwhile glory and royal heritage of the palace. With this aim the palace has been converted into a Heritage homestay which apart from promoting the tourism of the village also offers the tourists a flavour of stately grandeur. The tourists can soak themselves in the local music and culture and explore the resplendence of the untamed surroundings. Itachuna Rajbari has also served as a location for many Bollywood film shoots.
Vintage Homestay Categories of Itachuna Rajbari
The rooms are divided in six categories and they are Anando- The Sabhaghar, Category- A+, Category- Maa, Category- Bilash Manjari, Category- Choto Pishi and Bordi and Category- Huts.