Śrīpāṭa of Śrīla Rūpa Gosvāmī, Śrīla Sanātana Gosvāmī, Anupama Vallabha, Śrīla Jīva Gosvāmī, Keśava Chatrī and his son Durlabha Chatrī
Rāmakeli is situated in the district of Māladaha. One can come to Rāmakeli by bus from Māladaha bus-stand. Or one can avail trekar from Ratha-bāḍi and get down at Piyāsa-bāḍi crossing. From there one can come to this Mahā-pāṭa by walk at a distance of a few meters. Besides this, one can come to Kāliyā Chawk or Susthānī by bus from Kolkata towards North Bengal (like Māladaha, Śiliguḍi or other places). From there one can come to this Mahā-pāṭa by various conveyances.
This place is the Śrīpāṭa of Śrīla Rūpa Gosvāmī, Śrīla Sanātana Gosvāmī, Anupama Vallabha, Śrīla Jīva Gosvāmī, Keśava Chatrī and his son Durlabha Chatrī. They all were very dear to Śrīman Mahāprabhu. Śrī Rūpa-Sanātana and Anupama Vallabha were the ministers of Hussain Shah, the king of Gauḍa. They were residing at Rāmakeli. This has been described in Śrī Bhakti Ratnākara (1/575-583, 603-607)-
gauḍe rāmakeli-grāme karilena bāsa
aiśaryera sīmā ati adbhuta vilāsa
indra-sama sanātana-rūpera sabhāte
āise śāstrajña nānā deśa haite
gāyaka-bādaka nartakādi kavigaṇa
sarva-deśī sakale niyukta sarvakṣaṇa
nirantara karena aneka artha vyāya
konorūpe kāru asammāna nāhi haya
sadā sarvaśāstre carcā kare duijana
anāyāse kare doṅhe khaṇḍana-sthāpana
nyāyasūtra vyākhyā nija-kṛta ye karaya
sanātana-rūpa śunile se dṛḍha haya
aiche sabe sarva prakārete dṛḍha hañā
sanātana-rūpa-guṇa gāya sukha pāñā
sarvatra vyāpila e doṅhāra guṇagāna
karṇāṭa deśādi haite āila vipragaṇa
sanātana-rūpa nija-deśastha brāhmaṇe
bāsa-sthāna dilā sabe gaṅgā-sannidhāne
* * * * * * * * * * * * * *
sanātana-rūpera sādhana ye-prakāra
ye sakala vistāri' kahite sādhya kā’ra
bāḍira nikaṭe ati nibhṛta sthānete
kadamba-kānana, rādhā-śyāma-kuṇḍa tā’te
vṛndāvana-līlā tathā karaye cintana
nā dhare dharya, netre dhārā anukṣaṇa
śrī vigraha madana-mohana sevāya rata
sadā kheda ukti, tāhā kahiva bā kata
śrīkṛṣṇa caitanya-candra vihare nadīyā
sadā utkaṇṭhita tāṅ'ra darśana lāgiyā
They lived in Rāmakeli village of Gauḍa and they were leading a very opulent life. The royal assembly in the presence of Sanātana and Rūpa was like that of Indradeva. Many learned persons used to come from various places. Singers, musicians, dancers and poets were all engaged all the time. Rūpa and Sanātana continuously spent money and were very careful to take care of them so that they would not feel neglected. Both discussed topics as per scriptures and they easily defeated others. Aphorisms of Nyāya philosophy (Nyāya-sutra) were explained by them and these explanations became absolute if both Sanātana and Rūpa accepted. The glories of Sanātana and Rūpa spread all over the places and their glories were always sung happily by the people. Brahmins came from Karnāṭaka and other provinces. They were given places to stay with their own brahmins at the bank of the Ganges.
Nobody can describe in detail the glories of Sanātana and Rūpa. Kadamba tress and Rādhā/Śyāma Kuṇḍas were there at a solitary place near their house. They were thinking of Vṛndāvana-līlā and they did not have the patience to wait. They were always crying and lamenting in separation from Vṛndāvana and always engaged themselves in serving Madana-mohana. How much can one talk about them? Śrī Kṛṣṇa Caitanya-candra was exhibiting His pastimes in Nadia and they were always anxious to have His darśana.
In this way Rūpa-Sanātana were staying in Rāmakeli village. At first Rūpa and Sanātana were staying in Mādhāipura which was situated ten kilometers away from Rāmakeli. They were very learned and intelligent persons and due to these qualifications they were employed in Hussain Shah’s royal court as the Prime Minister and Finance Minister. In this way they were engaged in the service of the King. Sometimes they used to send letters very humbly to Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu. To shower His mercy upon Śrī Rūpa and Sanātana, Śrī Gaurāṅga Mahāprabhu with His associates reached Rāmakeli village. All of a sudden, Śrī Gaurāṅga Mahāprabhu with His associates reached there and started dancing under the Tamāla and Keli-kadamba trees. Then Rūpa and Sanātana met Him in disguise and expressed their mental distress. Mahāprabhu showered His great mecry upon them and gave their names there itself as Rūpa Gosvāmī and Sanātana Gosvāmī. He gave hints to them, ‘When I shall return from Vṛndāvana, you, leaving the King’s service by means of any trick, will meet Me.’
Since then, strong detachment in worldly affairs arose in Rūpa Gosvāmī and Sanātana Gosvāmī. They began thinking how to leave the King’s service. At first Rūpa Gosvāmī gave all his wealth to his family members and sent them to Bākalā Candradvīpa by boat. At that time Sanātana Gosvāmī almost left his job. He started discussing topics of Bhāgavatam with Bhaṭṭācārya Brāhmaṇas. Hussain Shah imprisoned him and went out to conquer the Orissa province. Sanātana Gosvāmī got himself free from the prison by hook or by crook and he met Mahāprabhu in Benares (Kāśī). At that time Śri Jīva was a child. He also went to Bākalā Candradvīpa with his family members. After some years he went to Navadvīpa and met with Nityānanda Prabhu there.
There is a Keli-kadamba tree where Mahāprabhu was chanting and dancing. One Tamāla tree is also standing nearby. The then old Keli-kadamba tree is still standing there with its bark only and there is nothing inside the bark. The same Tamāla tree is also standing there where Śrīman Mahāprabhu’s foot prints are present. Śrīla Prabhupāda Bhaktisiddhānta Sarasvatī Gosvāmī renvoted this temple of the foot prints in the year 1943. Present service is rendered and managed by a Trust. The Deity of Mahāprabhu worshiped by Śrīla Jīva Gosvāmī is present in front of the temple of the foot print. The Deities of Rādhā-Mādhava and Jaya-Gopāla are worshiped there. There is no proper standard of Deity worship. In the main temple from the right there are Deities of Śrī Nityānanda Prabhu, Gaurāṅga Mahāprabhu and Advaita Ācārya Prabhu. Śrī Rādhā-Madanamohana and Balarāma-Revatī are standing at their side. According to Śrī Caitanya- caritāmṛta, Śrī Caitanya Mahāprabhu came here and distributed Harināma Saṅkīrtana, the treasure of Love of Godhead to each and everybody without any discrimination. All those pictures of Saṅkīrtana are seen at one side of the temple. These painted pictures attract the mind of the visitors. Śyāma Kuṇḍa and Rādhā Kuṇḍa exist at the eastern side of the temple. Sanātana Gosvāmī discovered the surrounded eight Kuṇḍas of eight Sakhīs. There are Rūpa-sāgara and Sanātana-sāgara excavated by Rūpa Gosvāmī and Sanātana Gosvāmiī respectively. All these Kuṇḍas are not cleansed; they all are left out without any consecration.
In this way Rāmakeli village, filled with many pastimes enacted by Śrīman Mahāprabhu, Śrīla Rūpa Gosvaṁī and Śrīla Sanātana Gosvāmī, has become a holy pilgrimage place for Gauḍīya Vaiṣṇavas.