Hemanta Mukhopadhyay (June 16, 1920 - September 26, 1989) is not just famous for his songs, he is loved by all Indian song-lovers for his gentle romantic voice. On his 94th birthday today, we present something different, an entirely different creation of this artist. Here is a short story, Anupama, by the noted singer. It seems that the singer-narrator in the story and Hemanta Mukhopadhya are one and the same. Is Anupama also real?
Satyajit Ray (May 2, 1921 – April 23, 1992) is known to the world for his films. But with the Bengali story-lovers he is equally popular for his stories. His stories are being broadcast regularly drawing people of all ages to the forgotten radio sets. Our selection on his 92nd birth anniversary is the story of a laughing dog, a dog that not only laughs, but it has a sense of humour and intelligence. It laughs when a man makes a ridiculous mistake. Is it more intelligent than the American who wants to purchase it for his collection? Listen to the story.
The life of Sulekha Sanyal (June 15, 1928 - 1962) was prematurely cut short by leukaemia. In her short literary career she wrote two novels Nabankur and Dewal-Padma and a number of short stories. They show influence of the anti-British movement she found in her family in Faridpur and Chitagang (now in Bangladesh). She witnessed the Bengal Famine of 1943 while studying in Kolkata. She joined the communist movement while reading in Scottish Church College and was arrested in 1947. It was the end of her formal education. All these experiences found expression in her stories. Sanghat will show the loss Bengali literature has suffered following her untimely death. Bimala, the heroine, is an ordinary housewife who has her own grievances and jealousies. But Amita, her sister-in-law, shakes her off her roots. She, too, cries for liberty from her bondage at the end of the story.
We published a short story, Kamalasagarer Upakhyan, by Narayan Gangopadhyay (February 4, 1918 - November 6, 1970) in November last year. We have selected this story of this author written in the backdrop of the post-independence period when education was expensive, perhaps a luxury for students coming from the poor family. It hurt the feelings of this professor-writer. It appears from the recent hike in tuition fees confronted by parents that we are going back to those days.
Sharadindu Bandyopadhyay (March 30, 1899 – September 22, 1970) won the hearts of his readers with the gift of his narrative, especially the detective stories featuring Byomkesh Baksi and his historical fiction. On his 114th birth anniversary we have selected a short story written in the historical backdrop of the seventeenth century Maharashtra. It relates an episode in the boyhood of Shibaji, the great Maratha hero. We hear how he mastered the art of guerilla warfare all by himself in his boyhood and organised a band of warriors which defied the mighty Mughals. We note from our listeners that there are frequent interruptions during download. We have reported it to the Podbean host and we hope, the problem will be taken care of. However, we have decided to divide new stories into smaller chunks to avoid such interruptions.
India shook with horror reading the news of the sexual assault on a 23-year-old girl in a bus in Delhi on December 16, 2012. She succumbed to death on December 29 in spite of all attempts by the doctors. Imagine what happens if the mother-nature endows women with some defensive armament as she has provided many creatures with sharp spines and thorns. On this international Women's Day, we present Kantachua by Bani Basu. In this story nature is not just a protector, she is the avenger. Born on March 11, 1939 Bani Basu has reserved a place of her own in Bengali fiction with her story-telling technique, powerful dialogues and her strong sense of social history.
Kumaresh Ghosh (1913 — 1995) was born at kustia in ndia in undivided Bengal. he was the editor of a magazine Jostimadhu for quite some time. Known for humourous and satirical poetry, he was popular for his writings for the children. His works include Bhanga Garha, Chakra, Dumdum Theke Damaskas, Kolkata Kolkatai etc. This is his birth centenary and we have recorded Sajner Data, a short story of this writer, to pay our homage. This story does not have the vlavour of his humour or satire. instead it has the profound respect for the old values like gratitude. (We could not find out the dates of this author's birth or death in spite of several atempts. If any listener has the information, please let us know.)
Today the Bengali book-lovers are observing the 75th death anniversary of Sharat Chandra Chattopadhyay (September 17, 1876 - january 16, 1938). We have selected Bindur Chhele, a typpical Sharat Chandra story, for paying tribute to this immortal artist of words. This story narrates how love and tolerance can keep together the shattering pieces of family bond. Sharat Chandra's anxiety for the joint family falling apart in the wake of individualism is obvious. He is even today the most popular author, 75 years after his death. There is none who has read Bindur Chhele. Still we hope, you would enjoy listening to its audio version in two episodes.
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