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Manik Bandopadhyay Biography

Manik Bandopadhyay, one of the most important and influential novelists in Bengali literature, had his own way of presenting the Bengal rural life. Contrary to his contemporary authors, who only wrote about the scenic beauty and the simplicity of village life, Manik Bandopadhyay, delved deep into the complicated human psyche and the truth of existence in the villages.

His works also dealt with complicated human psychology, a mind without guard. Even today, the simplest of his novels leave the readers spell bound, finding themselves into an identifiable position with the characters.

Manik Bandopadhyay was born on 19th May, 1908 in Santhal pargana, West Bengal in a family, which had its root in Dhaka, Bangladesh. Being the fifth son of his parents, Harikar Bandopadhyay and Niroda Devi, he was well acquainted with the harsh realities of life, which can be well understood in his works that deals somewhat with the same harsh realities of human life. His real name is Prabodh Kumar Bandopadhyay, Manik being his nick name. Harikar had to travel all around undivided Bengal, as he was a government employee. Hence, Manik Bandopadhyay’s childhood was spent seeing and learning every arena of life in rural Bengal. His acquaintance with the hardships of life and intricacies of relationships in society, made him only speak of them, rather than romantic and simple aspects of life. He didn’t pretend to put forward the wretchedness of the games destiny plays with mankind. If sentiments and emotions are the words, then his works are not to be looked into.

After finishing his Matriculation in 1926 from Midnapore, Manik Bandopadhyay moved on to complete his ISC Examination from Welleslyan Mission College in Bankura. He was admitted to Presidency college, Calcutta for the completion of his B.Sc course, which he never did. He joined the Mymensingh Teacher’s Training School as its headmaster. He became the assistant editor of ‘Bangoshree’ in the year 1937. He married in Vikrampur, Dhaka.

Apart from ‘Padma Nadeer Majhi’, whic is a milestone in Bengali novels, the other of his major works are:

  • Pragoitihasik
  • Diba Ratrir
  • Janani
  • Kavya
  • Putul Nacher Itikatha
  • Shahartali

He died at the age of 48, in the year 1956, due to bacillary dysentery. Almost four decades after his death, the West Bengal government published a book on his lifetime contribution to Bengali literature.