Bengali poet Nirendranath Chakraborty passes away at 94 in Kolkata
Chakraborty would often stun those around him with his vast knowledge of Bengali linguistics.
As Chakraborty would say, poetry was his mother tongue and he would steal time from it to write prose. "Poetry comes naturally to me from what I see around me... . I don't have to imagine much..." he often said. Mentally agile till the end, he worked diligently to add to his poetic volumes. So, the announcement of his death at a Mukundapur private hospital came as a shock and disbelief to most poets. He had become frail and had been suffering from age-related problems. On Monday, he suffered a heart attack, from which he did not recover, doctors said.
Born on October 19, 1924, at Faridpur in erstwhile east Bengal, Chakraborty's education started at a paathshala there. After the family shifted to Kolkata in 1930, he was admitted to Mitra Institution. After finishing school, he went to Bangabasi College and St Paul's College. In 1954, when he was 30, Chakraborty's first book of poems, "Neel Nirjan", was published, marking the unstoppable beginning of a long and rich literary career. Following "Neel Nirjan", "Andhakar Baranda", "Nirakta Karabi", "Nakshatra Joy-er Janya", "Aaj Sokale" were published, each winning the heart of readers. The lines, "Amalkanti roddur hote cheyechhilo" from his poem, "Amalkanti" and "Raja tor kapor kothay" from "Ulanga Raja" went on to attain cult status, as did his "Kolkatar Jishu" and "Batasi". The winner of Sahitya Akademi award in 1974, he represented India in the World Poetry Festival in 1990.
Celebrity Deaths Of 2018: Looking Back At The Stars We Lost
Chakraborty would often stun those around him with his vast knowledge of Bengali linguistics, derivatives and spellings. "For example, I did not know the spelling of 'haritaki'. He taught me. This is just one example. He would often teach me the right spellings. This is not all. The fact that I write for children is because he handheld me into it. But for his insistence, I would never have," said writer Shirshendu Mukhopadhyay.
"Those of us who write poetry today have been inspired by him. He used to play with meter and rhyme so fluidly that it amazed everyone. The most striking thing was that he wrote youthfully and never let his age catch up with his writing," said film director and poet Buddhadeb Dasgupta. Poet Joy Goswami described Chakraborty as one of the "chief" modern poets. "He was a multifaceted talent, right from his knowledge of Bengali linguistics to meter and rhyme, his experimentation with styles and genres and the ease with which he traversed the world of children and adults was inimitable. I salute his prose, too," Goswami said.
Chief minister Mamata Banerjee expressed her condolences. "This is a big loss for all of us. His immense contributions to Bengali literature will keep him alive forever," the CM tweeted. "...we had conferred on him the Banga Bibhusan honour in 2017. My condolences to his family."
Saddened at the passing of poet Nirendranath Chakrabarty. It’s a great loss to us all. His contribution to Bengali… https://t.co/CMkUOXziT1— Mamata Banerjee (@MamataOfficial) 1545725815000
Education minister Partha Chatterjee paid his respects: "His mortal remains will be kept at Rabindra Sadan till the evening to let people pay their last tribute. The body will then be taken to his residence briefly before being cremated with a gun salute."