Member of the Year 2011
- May 26, 2010
On the auspicious occasion of Gudi Padwa, the New Year of Maharashtrians, the Indian Navy paid rich tribute to the great Maratha Warrior, Sarkhel Kanhoji Angre by erecting a memorial at Alibaug. The 10 feet tall statue of Admiral Kanhoji Angre was unveiled by Vice Admiral Jagjit Singh Bedi, the Flag Officer Commanding-in-Chief, Western Naval Command. The ceremony was conducted with lot of pomp and show, with the Naval Band at its best. The audience consisted of all the renowned invited dignitaries of Alibag Nagar Parishad and more than 500 people witnessed and reminisced the history of the great Alibaug born Maratha Warrior.
On taking over the command of the Maratha Navy from Admiral Sidhoji Gujar in 1699 a tripartite coalition consisting of the Siddis, the Moghuls and the Portuguese strove in a combined efforts to put an end to the Maratha Naval power. However, in the naval action that ensued, Admiral Kanhoji emerged victorious and annexed Sagargod. He also exacted revenue from many principalities along the Konkan coast. Sarkhel Kanhoji Angre was an Admiral of outstanding ability, who had a great vision and challenged the British Naval power along the West Coast of India. His policy of recruitment was to take professionally best seamen irrespective of cast, creed or even nationality. Some Arabs and Persian nationals served loyally in his fleet. Kanhoji also developed his dockyard which was capable of building vessels, mounting guns and victualling the fleet.
Kanhoji Angre holds a special significance for the Navy since he reigned supreme in the Arabian sea for two decades. The Navy’s biggest establishment in Mumbai Indian Naval Ship ‘Angre’ has been named after this great Maratha who still remains a proud symbol of valour and fighting spirit. The statue has been made especially by the Indian Navy for the residents of Alibaug in the memory of the brave exploits of ‘Admiral Angre’ and the Great Maratha Navy.
The fibreglass sculpture made by the famous artist Sheyesh Khanvilkar, stands on a pedestal in the site housing the private cemetery of the Angre family. The site has been developed by Alibaug Nagar Parishad which involved repairing of the 22 Samadhis of various Angre family members.
Source : http://www.pibmumbai.gov.in/scripts/detail.asp?releaseId=E2008PR273
Maratha ships attacking the sloop 'Aurora', of the Bombay Marine, 1812.
Artist: Thomas Buttersworth
Source: National Maritime Museum, Greenwich