Bhubaneswar: Hundreds of people from the Paika community across the state on Tuesday left for New Delhi from here to attend the bi-centenary celebrations of the historic Paika Rebellion to be held in the national capital on July 20.
The Paikas are scheduled to submit a memorandum to the Union Government requesting to set up a Kalinga Regiment in the Indian Army on the lines of Maratha Regiment.
Talking to Kalinga TV, Vice President of Kalinga Paika Association, Khurda, Pradyumna Satpathy said, “ We will submit a charter of demands to the central government that includes creating a Kalinga Regiment in the Indian Army and setting up a Paika Akhada (Paika Warrior Academy) in Odisha.”
“The Paika rebellion must be declared as the first war of independence against the British” he demanded. “The history of Odisha should be rewritten by the scholars to highlight the contributions of Jayi Rajaguru, Hatenath Singh and other Odia martyrs who made supreme sacrifices for the sake of our motherland”.
The kin of Paika martyrs will be felicitated at the ceremony being organised by the Union Government.
Former Minister Biswabhushan Harichandan and BJP leader Prithivraj Harichandan were present at the Bhubaneswar Railway station to see off the Paika delegation.
President of India Pranab Mukharjee will inaugurate the function marking the start of the 200 year celebrations of the rebellion. Prime Minister Narendra Modi is also likely to attend the function.
Union minister Dharmendra Pradhan, a member of the central committee set up to celebrate the bi-centenary celebrations of the historic Paika rebellion, had earlier announced that the commemoration would be held across the country for a year.
Paika rebellion, under the leadership of Buxi Jagabandhu, was an armed rebellion against the British East India Company’s rule in Odisha that ended in 1817.