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Barakpur, near Kolkata, India

Barakpur, near Kolkata, India

There is a Greek-style classical building in India which, as long as it stands, will serve as a tangible link to Mauritius. Originally built to serve as a mausoleum, the building is at Barakpur, about 13 miles from Kolkata.

Barakpur Cenotaph with sepoy guards

The Barakpur Cenotaph

The building has been known by several names: Minto’s Memorial Hall [after the British Governor General of India who ordered its construction], the Cenotaph, and the Temple of Fame. Modelled on a classical Greek temple, the front of the elegant building bears the inscription

To the Memory of the Brave. Erected A. D. 1813.

Inside the memorial chamber is designed as a simple barrel vault with four black commemorative plaques or tablets on which the following inscriptions were engraved:

This Cenotaph was erected by Gilbert Earl of Minto, Governor General of British India, as a tribute of personal feeling and respect to the Memory of the Brave, whose names are engraved in the adjoining Tablets, and who fell gloriously in the service of their country, during the conquest of the Islands of Mauritius and Java in the years 1810 and 1811.

Officers who fell at the conquest of the Isle of France.

Lieut. Munro, H. M. 86th Regt. 8th July 1810.

Lieut.-Col. Campbell, H. M. 33d Regt

Major O’Keefe, H. M. 12th Regt.

both fell between the 30th Nov. and 2nd Dec. 1810.

Today, the cenotaph is incorporated within an Indian army site with only restricted access, but still stands, a proud part of the tangible heritage of the shared history of India and Mauritius.

Is there a place somewhere close to where you live that has a link with Mauritius? Send us the details!

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© Mauritius Mag


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