Pushpavant Palace, the century- old royal structure which served as the Raj Bhavan till two days ago, would be developed as a museum and research centre dedicated to Nobel laureate Rabindranath Tagore declared the secretary to the governor Samarjit Bhowmik on Friday.
The palace was built by Maharaja Birendra Kishore Manikya Bahadur as a leisurely resort on a hillock on the northern side of Agartala in 1917. Tagore, who was a close friend of the royal family, stayed there in 1919.
The palace will be turned into a museum on Tagore. A team of scholars and researchers was earlier engaged to prepare a coffee table book on the palace according to Bhowmik.
Built by British firm Martin and Burn 101 years ago, it had housed 16 governors over a period of 46 years since 1972.
Tripura royal history researcher Pannalal Roy said Tagore visited Tripura seven times and had close ties with four reigning kings. The last reigning king of Tripura, Bir Bikram Manikya Bahadur, hosted him at the palace, also known as Kunjaban Palace after Kunjaban — the place where it is located.
Bhowmik said the palace was identified as a “heritage building” because of its long royal history and connection with Tagore and other great individuals. Former governor D. Y. Patil identified the palace as an “endangered building” in 2012 and decided to renovate it.