Maharaja Digvijay Singh of Jamnagar

In 2013, the Government of Poland inaugurated the ‘Good Maharaja Square’ in Warsaw. In honor of Maharaja Digvijay Singh of Jamnagar

  • Poland has also named the Maharaja the Honorary Patron of the popular Warsaw Bednarska High School
  • He was posthumously awarded the Commander’s Cross of the Order of Merit by the President

Why?

Let me tell you an amazing piece of history from WW-II

  • During the years preceding World War II, a huge number of Poles were taken away by the Red Army to work at the Soviet-run labour camps
  • To protect women and children from red army, Some 5000 children along with women were sent in a ship to seek refugee in any safe country
  • Everybody turn them down including all allied nations and Iran. All of them malnourished and no one helped them
  • Then a Hero came to rescue them. The hero was Maharaja Digvijay Singh
  • The first batch of the 500 severely malnourished and exhausted orphans had a surprise welcome, when they arrived in Nawanagar, from the Maharaja himself. “Don’t consider yourselves orphans. You are now Nawanagaris and I am Bapu, the father of all Nawanagaris, including yourselves,” he said.
  • Digvijay Singh not only welcomed the refugees, but also ensured that they had special accommodation, schools, medical facilities and opportunities for rest and recuperation at Balachadi, near Jamnagar.
  • Singh also opened a camp at Chela and involved the rulers of Patiala and Baroda, with whom he had a good rapport in the Chamber of Princes, to help the refugees.
  • Between 1942 and 1948, about 20,000 refugees stayed and transited through the then undivided India for a duration ranging from six months to six years.
  • Today, many of the survivors still recall with emotion and tears, the Maharaja’s personal send-off at the railway station.

Author: Aditya Bhuyan

I am an IT Professional with close to two decades of experience. I mostly work in open source application development and cloud technologies. I have expertise in Java, Spring and Cloud Foundry.

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