1. Born in Chinchwad, Damodar was the eldest of the Chapekar brothers
ZEE5’s latest original Marathi series Gondya Ala Re, highlights the legacy of the Chapekar brothers. These group of five men led India’s first ever rebellion against the Britishers, in 1892. This was the year when Pune was hit with a bubonic plague and several citizens were being mishandled and exploited by the officials. The Chapekar brothers assassinated W.C Rand, the plague commissioner at the time, who was responsible for the atrocities that Punekars were subjected to.
Watch the first episode here.
The main character Damodar Chapekar is being essayed by Bhushan Pradhan. We list out some essential facts about the revolutionary who sacrificed his life to protect his fellow citizens. Damodar and his brothers were born in Chinchwad, which was earlier a village in the Peshwa district of Pune. They later moved to Pune. He was the eldest and was born in 1868.
2. Damodar's pilgrimage to Kashi
The eldest Chapekar brother hailed from a rich family. The head was his grandfather Vinayak, who was an independent, spirited man who did not take up any government job and failed at many of his businesses. As a result, the family lost its status and started facing immense poverty. In order to pray for his family’s deteriorating financial condition, Damodar at a very young age, went on a pilgrimage to Kashi along with 25 travellers.
In his autobiography, Damodar maintains that his family tasted richness again, due to his visit to Kashi.
3. Damodar shouted the words 'Gondya Ala Re'
Damodar was the front runner of the rebellion carried out against the Britishers and in the assassination of WC Rand as well. On 22 June, 1897, the diamond jubilee Queen Victoria’s coronation was being celebrated in in Pune and the Chapekar brothers decided to use this opportunity to kill Rand. The brothers picked Ganeshkhind (now Senapati Bapat Road) as their spot for the assassination. They decided to attack Rand when he was on his way back to the ceremony.
Once Damodar spotted Rand’s carriage, he shouted ‘Gondya Ala Re,‘ which was his brother Balakrishna’s cue to shoot.
4. Damodar was tried and hanged
Damodar was arrested by British officials in connection with the assassination of Rand. In his statement, he had agreed to plot Rand’s death and said that he wanted to kill the British official for the inhumane treatment of citizens during the plague. He was tried and hanged on April 18, 1898.
5. Statue of the Chapekar brothers
In order to honour the legacy of the Chapekar brothers, a statue was built in their name, in their birthplace Chinchwad.
Watch the series above and tell us what you think in the comments section below! Catch all the episodes of Gondya Ala Re, streaming for free on ZEE5 here.