By the causeless mercy of Sri Guru and the Vaishnavas, our Pujyapad Premananda Prabhu has brought us to the holy appearance place of Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura in Ulagram also known as Biranagara. In reference to his birth and birthplace, Srila Bhaktivinoda Thakura wrote in his autobiography (Svalikhita-jivani) the following:

“(2) I was born in Sakabda year 1760 on the 18th day in the month of Bhadra in my maternal grandfather’s home situated in the village of Ula [or Ulagram] also known as Biranagara.”

“(4) My birth corresponds to the following: Sakabda 1760; Sri Gaurabda 352; Christian Era, 2nd September 1838; Bangabda 1245.

“(5) As Biranagara was famous within the Bengal region as a wealthy village so was my maternal grandfather, Sri Isvara Candra Mustauphi also famous as a prosperous landowner. His extraordinary liberality was known in many parts of the region. People used to come from all over the countryside to see his famous palace. In the district of Nadiya the village of Biranagara [Ula] was known to be especially wealthy and happy.”

“(15) When I was growing up I was full with curiosity and tried to see everything. In my grandfather’s house all kinds of festive occasions were celebrated. Jagadatri puja was celebrated with much pomp. I can well remember Jagadatri puja being celebrated, during the night especially. Hundreds of chandeliers would hang on the puja house. Bachara would be [observed] outside the puja house. There, lanterns would be wrapped around all the pillars and columns. All the guards at the doors would be dressed in sepoy uniforms. Numerous stout men dressed in golden embroidered clothes would come from Ranaghat and Shantipura. Many bodyguards and soldiers used to accompany all these men. In terms of people [the scene] was like a forest of people and in terms of lights it was like the battle of Kuruksetra. The scene was filled with fireworks and rowdy pomp. On the first night there was ksemat and bainat dancing. At that time people would be so overwhelmed with pleasure they would lose all sight of the religious occasion. Late at night there would bekabi gana [singing contests]. At dawn I used to listen, but the kavi-vallas used to scream so loudly that it would hurt my ears. The deity would be dressed in the best outfits. The eating arrangements created the greatest pleasure.”

 

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