Indian Prime Minister paid homage to Rishi Bankim Chandra Chattopadhyay on his Jayanti on 27th June.

Important points:

  • He was one of the greatest novelists and poets of India.
  • He was born on 27th June 1838 in the village of Kanthapura in the town of North 24 Parganas, Naihati, present day West Bengal.
  • He composed the song Vande Mataram in Sanskrit, which was a source of inspiration to the people in their freedom struggle.
  • In 1857, there was a strong revolt against the rule of East India Company but Bankim Chandra Chatterjee continued his studies and passed his B.A. Examination in 1859.
  • The Lieutenant Governor of Calcutta appointed Bankim Chandra Chatterjee as Deputy Collector in the same year.
  • He was in Government service for thirty-two years and retired in 1891.
  • He died on 8th April, 1894.

Contributions to India’s Freedom Struggle:

  • His epic Novel Anandamath – set in the background of the Sanyasi Rebellion (1770-1820), when Bengal was facing a famine too – made Bankim Chandra Chattopadhyay an influential figure on the Bengali renaissance.
  • He kept the people of Bengal intellectually stimulated through his literary campaign.
  • India got its national song, Vande Mataram, from Anandamath.
  • He also founded a monthly literary magazine, Bangadarshan, in 1872, through which Bankim is credited with influencing the emergence of a Bengali identity and nationalism.
  • Bankim Chandra wanted the magazine to work as the medium of communication between the educated and the uneducated classes.
  • The magazine stopped publication in the late 1880s, but was resurrected in 1901 with Rabindranath Tagore as its editor.
  • While it carried Tagore’s writings – including his first full-length novel Chokher Bali – the ‘new’ Bangadarshan retained its original philosophy, nurturing the nationalistic spirit.
  • During the Partition of Bengal (1905), the magazine played a vital role in giving an outlet to the voices of protest and dissent. Tagore’s Amar Sonar Bangla – the national anthem of Bangladesh now – was first published in Bangadarshan.


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