A Journey to the Cellular Jail at Andaman

  • By Ankur Gupta
  • January 28, 2024
  • 1435 views
  • The author walks through Cellular Jail in Andaman and revisualises life of those who fought for India’s freedom. He left with a feeling of reverence and gratitude.  

A thrill of anticipation ran through me as the flight descended onto the Andaman & Nicobar Islands Airport. 

The emerald islands, jewels in the Bay of Bengal, held tales of valor and sacrifice.  My first destination lay through the heart of Port Blair. 

We passed the esteemed Institute of Medical Sciences, a symbol of progress, then the Directorate of Health Sciences, a guardian of the islands' well-being.  Even the Police Station held a sense of gravity here, a testament to the order forged in a once-turbulent land.

Cellular Jail.

Then, the pinnacle: the Cellular Jail. As I took my first steps inside, its imposing walls told silent stories of defiance. 

 

The sight from within was sobering, the central tower a constant reminder of surveillance the patriots endured.

Stone slab for final rites.

We reached the hanging area.  The starkness of the three nooses, the stone slab for final rites- it sent shivers down my spine.  These were places where countless heroes breathed their last for the dream of a free India. (see Jail Cells pic below). 

Entering the cells, I felt the weight of history. In the topmost, furthest cell, Veer Savarkar, the fiery revolutionary, had been imprisoned.  His cell was positioned for a chilling reason – to witness the executions.  Adjoining was the workshop, a place where relentless labor, not rehabilitation, was the law.

The other wings of cells, stark and suffocating with a single, high ventilator… this is where the spirit of countless unsung freedom fighters endured. 

View of high ventilator. 

The corridors echoed with unseen footsteps.  Inside Veer Savarkar's cell, the silence was almost oppressive. 

Yet, from this tiny space, a mighty will had defied an empire. 

Inside Savarkar’s cell. 

Through the cell doorway, the view of the gallows was startlingly clear, a constant, cruel spectacle.

View of gallows, notice white coloured stone.

This was not just a prison. It was a monument to the unbreakable spirit of those who fought for India's liberation.  

 

Every corner of the Cellular Jail whispers of their courage. As I leave, I'm filled not with despair, but with a profound sense of reverence and gratitude.

 

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1. Album Kalapani Jail

2. Album Beaches of Andaman

3. Savarkar has not been given his due

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