Monday, February 16, 2015

Hemgir Palace,Hemgir,Orissa

In a remote village of Hemgir lies the Palace of the Zamindars who once ruled the Hemgir Estate.Covering over 900 sq km including large areas of forests,Hemgir Estate was part of the Gangpur State.

While returning from koiligughar falls we stumbled upon this palace while passing through the Hemgir village.I was the first one to spot it,surprised by the distinct looks of the front fa├žade and the small cuboids at the corners.A house featuring an arch made of lions on the front roof in a village was quite unexpected.I urged the others in the group to stop.We got down and after asking the neighbours about the entrance which was,we found out,at the back,we made our way there.

We walked inside a small doorway and to our right there was a small hut which we assumed to be of a caretaker.Even after repeated knocks and shouts nobody came out so we proceed ahead.To the right there were ruins of a small house with very short pillars at the front.The whole house was characteristically short.

Next we went through another doorway to reach a thatched hut which showed signs of life.Satya being an Odiya himself called out in odiya.An old man came out inquiring.We said we were a group of travellers passing by and wished to see the palace.I was expecting a rejection but to my surprise and happiness he lead us to inside the main palace complex.We looked around.From an inscription I found out the palace was built in 1930.This section looked more modern when compared to the first structure which we had seen.The old man explained that that was the older palace which was built much before the 1930s.The best part was that we found an almirah full of documents.I casually looked at some and was excited to see that some of the documents dated to 1930s and 40s. Since these were private property we were a bit hesitant to look at them.

The old man enthusiastically told us about the palace and a few stories.We were grateful for him for his help and his stories.He informed us that the actual owners still come by sometimes to spend some time in the village.Indeed we saw AC in the windows while leaving.It would have been interesting to meet the owners.Later an on online search told me that the present owners were MLAs.Hemgir ascended to India in 1953.  


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  2. Hi.. Thank you for the lovely write up about our ancestral palace..