Shobhabajar Rajbari (Heritage Site) snapshot
Shobhabazar Rajbari is located in Northern part of Kolkata. This area prior to British Colonialism with its neighbouring places was known as the village of Sutanuti where the well-bred upper class natives used to reside. Now this place is just 6 km away from the centre of the present Kolkata city that is Chandni Chowk.
The Rajbari or the Palace at Shobhabazar was constructed by Maharaja Nabakrishna Deb, although there are contradicting stories on this. It is often said, that Raja Nabakrishna Deb (1733 - 1797) took this palace from Shobharam Basak and extended it to look what it appears today.
The extensions were carried out to reflect the grandeur of the Raja, who after the death of Nawab Siraj- ud- Daulah, earned treasures worth Rs. 8 crore along with Mir Jafar, Ramchand Roy and Amir Beg. Raja Nabakrishna Deb, who was the founder of the Raj family of Shobhabazar was actively involved in the conspiracy against Siraj-ud- Daula that led to his death.
The Shobhabazar Rajbari is renowned for the illustrious of Durga Puja celebrated here during the autumn. This family started celebrating Durga Puja, the majestic festival of West Bengal in the year 1757. Nabakrishna Deb is known for initiating this Puja in the Rajbari, for his benevolence and patronising various artists.
Being one of the ancient buildings of Northern Kolkata, the Rajbari has a heritage of its own. It is still popular even today for the splendid temples inside the building grounds and the complex rituals followed.
This Heritage Building of Kolkata has remained true to its tradition, rituals and spirituality in conducting Durga Puja and opened their doors to non- Brahmins who wish to learn the procedure of conducting Puja.
Amidst the popularity of community or Barowari Puja (Community Puja) in Kolkata, these days the Durga Puja is even held at the Shobhabazar Rajbari and other zamindar families who have retained their importance and interest with the crowds. The Durga Puja organised at the Shobhabazar Rajbari completed its 250th year in 2006.