Descendents of Tipu Sultan and two other non-government organisations have decided to celebrate the 18th century Mysore ruler’s birthday in Kolkata Tuesday. The organisers have also decided to raise the demand for a statue or a memorial in the city.
Last year, a controversy erupted after Karnataka government decided to observe Tipu Jayanti to mark his birthday, as right-wing organisations protested against the move and even called for a bandh.
“We feel Tipu Sultan is a symbol of communal harmony. When Maratha forces attacked the temples during his rule, Shankaracharya wrote a letter to him. Tipu Sultan defended the temples and the people. Thirty-five letters were exchanged between the ruler and Shankaracharya which were later discovered,” said Partha Sengupta, secretary of Biswakosh Parishad, a non-government organisation working in the literary field.
The Parishad, along with Sadbhawana Manch, an organisation that promotes communal harmony, and the descendants of the Mysore ruler, are organising the event.
To commemorate the day, a seminar will also be held at Calcutta Press Club where the descendants of the ruler will be present. “All the descendants of Tipu Sultan present in Kolkata will be there at the event. Last year there was a lot of controversy surrounding Tipu Jayanti. He was a great freedom fighter. He was a benevolent king who maintained communal harmony. We are happy that his birthday is being celebrated,” said Shahid Alam, one of the descendants of Tipu Sultan’s son Prince Shubhan and the secretary of Mysore Family Fund Committee.