Bhubaneswar: The TV series ‘Vidrohi’ based on the life and time of Buxi Jagabandhu Bidyadhar Mohapatra Bhramarbar Ray, the chief architect of Paik Rebellion in Khurda in 1817, will go on air from Monday evening.
It will be telecast on Star Plus at 6.30 pm and streamed on Disney+ Hotstar.
While Sharad Malhotra is playing the titular role in the series, television and Bollywood actress from Odisha, Sulagna Panigrahi has been cast opposite him as his first wife, Radhamani.
Speaking to the media, Sulagna said she grabbed the role as it was about Odisha and its great leaders. “People will get to see the history and culture of Odisha through this series. I feel proud to be associated with the show,” said the actress.
She said that she has based the character of ‘Radhamani’ on her mother, who is a wife of an army man. “Wife of army men are generally graceful, elegant and strong. Radhamani was all of this and she was a very supportive wife. A lot of research has gone into depicting the character,” she added.
Sulagna made her debut in the television industry with ‘Amber Dhara’ in which she had played Dhara. She was also seen in the Bollywood thriller ‘Murder 2’. She had tied the nuptial knot with popular stand-up comedian Biswa Kalyan Rath in December last year.
Sharad had earlier told the media that he had trained in some local martial arts of Odisha and horseback riding. He also did his own research about the revolt, reading books from the said time and watching some relevant material on TV. “I had to put in a lot to achieve just the right kind of body language to play ‘Jagabandhu’,” he was quoted as saying by IANS.
Set in 1817, the series depicts the great Paika Rebellion which was led by Buxi Jagabandhu. He was the commander of the forces of the King of Khurda. He organised scattered and demoralised forces and youth after facing defeat in a fierce battle against East India Company led by Colonel Harkot, who had arrested King Mukunda Dev II.
Buxi Jagabandhu trained them in guerilla warfare. He developed the skill to fight in the dense forest as well as to attack from deep water. He trained his men in indigenous warfare like shooting arrows from trees with bows. He and his army fought heroically against a superior force equipped with powerful weapons.
All the Daleis, Dalbeheras and Paik Sardars of Khurda joined with Buxi to fight against the Britishers and to drive them out from Khurda soil. The rebel Paik leaders mercilessly killed the British supporter and traitor Charan Patnaik of Rathipur village under Khurda. The rebellion spread like wildfire to all parts of Khurda, including Panchagada and Bolagada.
Buxi Jagabandhu entered the dense forest of Ghumusar and later went to his father-in-law’s house at Shergad, and again hide in the deep jungle of Boud and Daspalla. The British announced rewards to nab Buxi Jagabandhu either dead or living.
To compel him to surrender, the British rulers imprisoned the two wives of Buxi Jagabandhu, his minor son, his Gumasta and his personal home servant in Barabati fort in 1819. They, however, were released in 1820.
Lastly, British Commissioner T Pakenham sent a letter to the king of Nayagada for convincing Buxi Jagabandhu to surrender. They offered a monthly pension of Rs.150 for his maintenance and he could stay at Cuttack with his family members.
As there was nothing offending in the conditions, the king of Nayagarh advised Buxi Jagabandhu to surrender and he did so on May 25, 1825. He died on January 24, 1929.