ePaper

Sunday, January 21, 2018

A renowned dramatist of Bengali Renaissance

  • Print

Dinabandhu Mitra was a famous Bengali dramatist. He was born in 1830 at Chouberia in Nadia, a district of present India. His father's name was Kalachand Mitra. His family name was Gandharva Narayan, but he changed it to Dinabandhu Mitra.


Dinabandhu Mitra's education started at a village pathshala (school). His father arranged a job for him on a zamindar's estate (1840). But he was too young to manage a job there, but aged to run away from home. He fled to Kolkata, where he started working in the house of his uncle, Nilmani Mitra. Around 1846, he was admitted to the free school run by James Long.


Dinabandhu proved to be a bright student and won a scholarship. In 1850, he enrolled at Hindu College and was awarded a scholarship for academic excellence. However, he did not appear in his last examination, and, instead, started working as a postmaster at Patna (1855). He served in various posts in the Postal Department in Nadia, Dhaka and Orissa. In 1870, he was made supernumerary post- master in Calcutta. In 1872, he joined the Indian Railway as an inspector.

Dinabandhu started writing while at college. Inspired by Ishwar Chandra Gupta, he began writing poems which were published in different journals. His poems attracted the attention of intellectuals, but his favorite genre was drama. His work in the postal department had taken him to various parts of the country where he had come in contact with the people of different professions. These experiences were used in his plays.

Among his books of poems are Suradhuni Kavya (first part in 1871, second part in 1876), Dvadash Kavita (1872). His plays include Nildurpun (1860), Nabin Tapasvini (1863), Biye Pagla Budo (1866), Sadhabar Ekadashi (1866), Lilavati (1867), Jamai Barik (1872), Kamale Kamini (1873), and Jamalaye Jibanta Manus. He also wrote a novel titled Poda Mahehshvar.

Dinabandhu is, however, particularly known for his play Nildurpun, which exposed the distresses of indigo cultivators in the hands of indigo planters. Michael Madhusudan Dutt translated the play into English and Reverend James Long published it, an 'offence' for which Long was fined.

Nildarpan was so emotionally motivating that when the play was staged, the notable educator and reformer Iswar Chandra Vidyasagar was so taken in by the realism of the performance of Ardhendushekhar Mustafi, the actor playing the role of the indigo planter Mr Wood that he threw a shoe at the actor.

The actor accepted the shoe as a compliment.[4] Bankimchandra Chattopadhyay compared Nildarpan to Uncle Tom's Cabin for its role in arousing people's awareness of the evils of indigo plantations.[4] It played an important role in the Nilbidraha. Dinabandhu was awarded the title 'Rai Bahadur' by the British government for services rendered at the Battle of Lushai. He died on 1 November 1873. The college Dinabandhu Mahavidyalay (estd. 1947) is named after him.


More News For this Category

The most distinguished writer and scholar

| By Feature Desk
Nirad Chandra Chaudhuri was a Bengali?English writer and man of letters. He is popularly known as Nirad C Chaudhuri. He authored numerous works in English and Bengali. His oeuvre
The most distinguished writer and scholar

An interview with Patrick deWitt

| By and Interview by Brian Bethune
Patrick deWitt is a Canadian novelist and screenwriter. He was born on Vancouver Island, British Columbia, and later lived in California and Washington State. He lives in Portland, Oregon.
An interview with Patrick deWitt

A famous writer in Bengali literature

| By Feature Desk
Bibhuti Bhushan Bandyopadhyay was a Bengali author and one of the leading writers of modern Bengali literature. His best known work is the novel Pather Panchali (The Song of
A famous writer in Bengali literature

History of the agricultural revolution

| By and Mary Bellis
Between the eighth century and the eighteenth, the tools of farming basically stayed the same and few advancements in technology were made. The farmers of George Washington's day
 History of the  agricultural revolution

A conversation with Esi Edugyan

| By
Esi Edugyan (born 1977) is a Canadian novelist. She is a 33-year-old author whose second novel, Half Blood Blues about a black jazz musician's disappearance in 1939 Berlin.
A conversation with Esi Edugyan

Campus TV focuses on campus life

| By and Monira Akter Laboni
Beginning Story: On 2011, the idea of doing something exclusive on campus activities of Daffodil International University first popped into the mind of our Honorable Chairman Md Sabur Khan.
Campus TV focuses on campus life

An interview with Deborah Levy

| By
Deborah Levy is a British playwright, novelist, and poet. Her work has been staged by the Royal Shakespeare Company and she is the author of novels including Beautiful
An interview with Deborah Levy

The linguist with a scientific insight

| By Feature Desk
Suniti Kumar Chatterji was an Indian linguist, educationist and litterateur. He was a recipient of the third highest Indian civilian honour of Padma Bhushan. He was born on
The linguist with a scientific insight

Bangladesh film industry

| By and A.S.M.Yiahia
February 3, 2017: Actress Airin had a road accident at Mirpur circle-10 and got seriously injured. She went there to campaign for a movie named 'Mayabini'.
Bangladesh film industry

A conversation with Stephen Kelman

| By
Stephen Kelman is an English novelist, whose debut novel Pigeon English was a shortlisted nominee for the 2011 Man Booker Prize. Kelman was born and raised in Luton, Bedfordshire,
A conversation with Stephen Kelman

© 2018 The Asian Age