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Madhusudan Majumdar (June 24, 1921 – November 29, 1981) was known for his editorial role. He was the first business Editor of Shuktara when Deb Sihitya Kutir started this children's magazine shortly after independence. His success with Shuktara thrust upon him the responsibility for Naba Kallol when it was started in March, 1960. Shri Majumdar lost his sight at the age of eight. He received his elementary education in Braille at Calcutta Blind School. Later he studied at Brahma Boys School at Jhamapukur, Kolkata and graduated from Presidency College. Despite his blindness, he continually wrote reviews for the theatre section of Naba Kallol. He was a voracious reader and maintained a very cordial relationship with writers. This quality of his character made his task easy to manage a publishing house like Deb Sahitya Kutir. He also wrote several stories and novels. He was one of the founder Vice-Presidents of Blind Persons' Association.

For this month we have selected a story, Kashmir Rani Didda from his Amar Bir Kahini. Didda (920 – 1003) was celebrated as a heroine for her defence of Kashmir. This story, though hardly supported by historical records, shows the queen’s tact and foresight. She does not hesitate to punish her royal husband to defend the kingdom.

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Pramathanath Bishi (June 11, 1901 - May 10, 1985) was known for his unique prose which helped him achieve success as a fiction-writer and editor. We have selected a typical Pramathanath story that represents his wit and humour. It has a tinge of satire upon his contemporary life, but it hardly hurts. This is a pure fiction with something solid to laugh about.

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Ranjan or Niranjan Majumdar (June 26, 1920 - December 19, 1975) joined The Pioneer in 1939 as a journalist when he was just twenty. We have selected a story of this author in which the protagonist, a highly successful man by all standards, cannot come out of the set of snob values he acquired from his Education in England. Listen to the story to see the prive he pays.

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Muhammed Zafar Iqbal (born on December 23, 1952) is one of the pioneers of science fiction in Bengali. This Bangladeshi writer and columnist is a professor of physics in Dhaka. Apart from writing articles on physics and mathematics, he has written several books of fiction, mainly for the young. His masterpiece, The Great Inventions of Sofdor Ali, the Scientist, will delight both young and aged readers for years. Today we have for you a story on Sofdor Ali. Let us hear how this scientist calculates everything in hexadecimal numbers and manipulates the system of conditioned reflex to get kacchi biriani cooked by guinea pigs.

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Angshu has come to a remote village as a representative of a science organisation. He has undertaken a mission of eradicating superstitious beliefs in charms and witchcraft among the villagers. His father died of dog bite when Angshu was hardly three. He took recourse to exorcisation instead of proper medical advice. Let us listen to this story, Timirbasana by Basudeb Malakar and see what Angshu does in the village.

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Ray Bahadur Yogendranath towers supreme over his family. His domination is challenged by his son-in-law, Bimal when the Ray Bahadur insults Bimal. Bimal cannot refrain from protesting against the arrest of a Swadeshi leader by the British colonial government. The result is a split between Bimal and Lajjabati, Yogendranath’s beloved daughter. For the rest listen to the story by Satish Chandra Mukhopadhyay, our podcast for this month.

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Tilottama Majumdar (born on January 11, 1966) has distinguished herself through her novels, short stories, poems and essays. Our selection for this month, Anna Parba,  is the story of a woman, or to be more precise, the story of a mother and son. Nandita has been misunderstood and under-rated by her family, her husband, her husband's parents and even her son shayan. She never gives up. She teaches her son to distinguish a fake incident from a real one. In the process Shayan realises the real worth of his mother.

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Neela wanted to see the sea. Her father promised to show her the sea. But he died before keeping his word. She grew up, got married, but her desire for a trip to the sea was never fulfilled. She heard of it from other visitors. Sea remained in her imagination as waves of salt water crashing against each other drowning everything. Neela’s unfulfilled desire for sea finds its relief in things that taste of salt, tear trickling down her cheeks or fresh blood coming out of a small wound. This is the story for this month, Samudrer Saadh by Manik Bandyopadhyay (May 19, 1908 – December 3, 1956). We have recorded Manik Bandyopadhyay’s masterpiece, Padmanadir Majhi for our library. Visit http://bpa.org.in/padmanadir-majhi-by-manik-bandyopadhyay/ for details.

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Ajeya Ray (August 27, 1937 – September 3, 2008) remained behind the scenes during his life time. One reason behind it is perhaps his adherence to children’s literature. Inspired by Satyajit Ray and Leela Majumdar, he wrote stories for Sandesh and Kishor Bharati. The young have always enjoyed trvelling to remote places of the Amazon, Hawaii or Madagascar with Asit in his adventure stories. We, the adults, who enjoyed Ajeya Ray’s stories during childhood would still find pleasure in listening to this Podcast on the Children's Day.

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We go to hilly stations or sea beaches during puja holidays. Gone are those days when uncles’ uncles took their nephews to moon for a trip. However, you can still enjoy listening to the experience of the trip. How? Listen to this story, Sejo Mamar Chandrayatra by Leela Majumdar (February 26, 1908 – April 5, 2007).

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Arjun Mondal is a fisherman who has to support his wife and seven daughters. He becomes liberate at the age of forty when he suddenly discovers the power of education from an incident. He does not stop there. He goes on to become first an apprentice dresser at a government hospital, then a trained compounder and finally he sets up his own practice. But it does not fulfill his unquenchable thirst for knowledge. Though fate seldom favours him, his indomitable resolve sets him up as an exemplary character. Can he triumph over his fate? This story of Banaphool (July 19, 1899 – February 9, 1979) is our present on the World Literacy Day.

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We are happy to present to listeners a romantic love story after a prolonged waiting. Our selection, Chuya Chandan by Sharadindu Bandyopadhyay (March 30, 1899 - September 22, 1970) is laid out at Nabadwip of early sixteenth century. This story is blessed with the author's touches of a historical fiction. It has love and conspiracy, innocence and adventure, and above all it has poetic justice because Nimai Pandit (not yet Shri Chaitanya Deb) plays the role of deus ex machina in the story.

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Mahasweta Debi (January 14, 1926 – July 28, 2016) has breathed her last just a few hours earlier. Bengali literature has lost the soul of protest with her passing away. We pay homage by podcasting her story, Champa, written in the backdrop of the Sepoy Mutiny. This is one of those anecdotes which the author collected during her trips to out-of-the-way places in North and Central India. Champa is an innocent girl who might bloom like a champa, the magnolia. She belongs to the people whose life and death depended on the mercy of the East India Company. This warm and tender girl takes up poison to avenge herself on the death of her grandfather and her husband.

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When we think of humour in Bengali literature, one of the names that come first to our mind is Shibram Chakraborty (1902 or 13 December, 1903 — 28 August, 1980). His fascination for pun sharpens his humour. The story we have selected today is a witty exploration of words by the author.

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Our story for this  month is Babar Binu Mamar Bari by Gour Kishor Ghosh (June 22, 1923 - December 15, 2000) whose experiences in different professions and particularly as a journalist gave him the opportunity for observing life in different aspects. Our present selection is the story of a quest, the quest of a father by his son. The author wants to touch his father who continually eludes him like the moonshine. His father, too, escapes to another world, the world of a so-called Binu Mama whose existence is not known to his children. It seems, Binu Mamar Bari (Uncle Binu's house) is a myth, a fairyland that both father and son are searching.

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We are going to publish Nazrul-Giti, a complete collection of songs of Kazi Nazrul Islam (May 24, 1899 — August 29, 1976) in Braille next Saturday. We were looking for something uncommon for podcast on this occasion. We found this excellent piece of memoir by Shailajananda Mukhopadhyay (March 21, 1901 — February 1, 1976) in which he has tried to provide us with some glimpses of the man Nazrul. We have little resources to evaluate Kazi Nazrul. We can only try to read about him and his works.

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Listen to the first part first.

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Today we are remembering Satyajit Ray (May 2, 1921 — April 23, 1992) on his 96th birthday by presenting to our listeners Master Angshuman, a typical Satyajit Ray story. Angshyuman is a child artist whose maiden experience of shooting is the story. You will learn many unknown things about shooting. But the principal attraction is the stunt man, Keshtada whose courage and intelligence unearth the mysterious theft of a rare jewel. The shooting of an advernture film becomes the witness of a real adventure.

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We found this story in an old issue of Falakshirsha, a quarterly we published before. This is a children's story about the ritual of Kumari Puja during Annapurna Puja. Many people are observing it today in West Bengal, particularly in Bardhaman district. We hope, our members will enjoy listening to the experience of a child who suddenly rises in self-esteem. (They may also miss the old Falakshirsha, a magazine we had to stop publishing due to unavoidable circumstances.)

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