Memorial to Polish refugees to be unveiled in Kolhapur
Commemorative pillar put up in Valivade, where WW-II refugees arrived from Germany and Russia
When Poland was caught between Adolf Hitler’s Germany and Josef Stalin’s Russia during the Second World War, a stream of refugees made their way to Valivade village in Kolhapur district, 235 km from Pune.
Here, they tasted freedom after having endured the living hell of Soviet camps following their deportation by the dreaded NKVD or the Soviet secret police.
On Saturday, a commemorative pillar in memory of these Polish families and individuals who lived in Valivade between 1942 and 1948 will be unveiled by Deputy Foreign Minister of the Polish Republic Marcin Przydacz, Polish Ambassador to India Adam Burakowski and Guardian Minister of Kolhapur Chandrakant Patil, said Bharatiya Janata Party Member of Parliament from Kolhapur, Chhatrapati Sambhaji Raje.
“At a time when the world was torn apart by war, Europe was ravaged and parts of India were in the grip of a terrible famine, the Chhatrapatis of Kolhapur adopted these Polish families on humanitarian grounds. We want to keep this sentiment alive through the memorial and the museum, which will strengthen Indo-Polish ties,” said Mr. Sambhaji Raje.