Madhusudan Das

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For others, see Madhusudan
ଉତ୍କଳ ଗୌରବ ମଧୂସୁଦନ ଦାସ୍
Madhu babu (Madhusudan Das).jpg
Utkal Gourab Madhusudan Das
Born (1848-04-28)28 April 1848
Satyabhamapur, Cuttack district, Bengal Presidency, British Raj
Died 4 February 1934(1934-02-04) (aged 85)
Cuttack, Bihar and Orissa Province, British Raj
Occupation Lawyer, social reformer, minister, industrialist
Nationality Indian
Ethnicity Oriya
Education M.A, B.L.
Alma mater Calcutta University
Period 1848–1934
Spouse Soudamini Devi
Children Sailabala Das, Sudhanshubala Hazra

Utkal Gourab Madhusudan Das (28 April 1848 – 4 February 1934) was born on 28 April 1848 in a village called Satyabhamapur, 20 kilometres from Cuttack, Odisha.[1] He is known as Kulabruddha (କୁଳବୃଦ୍ଧ) which means Grand Old Man & Utkal Gourab (ଉତ୍କଳ ଗୌରବ) which means Pride of Utkal and was referred to as a poet and freedom fighter. He was the first graduate and advocate of Odisha.

Family[edit]

He was born to a Zamindari family from father Choudhury Raghunath Das and mother Parbati Debi. They had initially named him Gobindaballabh. Later they changed his name to Madhusudan. He had two elder sisters and a younger brother named Gopalballabh. Gopalballabh was the Magistrate at Bihar Province and the father of Rama Devi. Madhusudan had adopted two Bengali girls; Shoilabala and Sudhansubala Hazra. Sailabala was an educationist who had trained from England and in whose name the famous Shailabala Women's College of Cuttack was founded.[2] Shailabala was a Bengali, and her parents had left her in the care of Madhusudan Das and his wife Soudamini Devi at Calcutta. Sudhansubala Hazra was also a Bengali and she was the 1st female lawyer of British India. Madhu babu was the house teacher of Ashutosh Mukherjee, the former Vice-Chancellor of Calcutta University in Calcutta[3] and Janakinath Bose, father of Subhash Chandra Bose at Ravenshaw College.

Early life and education[edit]

Madhusudan Das had his early education in the village school. He had studied many subjects, including Persian, from a Maulvi. After his early education, he moved to Cuttack High School (later known as Ravenshaw Collegiate School) which offered English education. In 1864, he passed the entrance examination and went to Calcutta University. In spite of uttermost challenging conditions he lived in Calcutta for almost fifteen years, from 1866 to 1881. In 1870, he became the first Oriya to complete his B.A. He continued his studies there to complete his M.A. and B.L. degrees, thus becoming the first ever scholar from Odisha to achieve these feats.

Professional life[edit]

Statue of Madhu babu

After returning to Odisha from Calcutta in 1881, he started his legal practice. His insight knowledge on this field helped him to earn sufficiently and spend for the common man. He was a source of inspiration for the lawyers in Odisha and in India. His birth anniversary is observed as Lawyers' Day in the State.

Political career[edit]

Known as 'Madhu Babu' by the common people, he worked for the political, social and economical upliftment of the people of Odisha and served his mother-nation as a lawyer, social reformer and patriot. He founded Utkal Sammilani which brought a revolution in the social and industrial development of Odisha. By his long political fight he unite Odisha & modern Odisha took birth on 1st April 1936. This date is celebrated as Utkal Dibasa.

He has been admired as a legislator and journalist. He was the first Oriya to be a member of both the legislative council and the Central Legislative Assembly of India. He was the first Indian Minister[clarification needed]. He was also the first Oriya to sail overseas.

He founded the Utkal Tannery in 1905, a factory producing shoes and other leather products. In 1897 he founded the Orissa Art Ware Works. With his support, the Tarakasi(filigree) work of silver ornaments achieved commendable feet.[4]

Contribution to literature[edit]

As a writer and poet, patriotism was always at the fore and it reflected in all of his literary works. He penned a number of articles and poems in both English and Oriya. Some of his important poems are "Utkal Santan", "Jati Itihash" and "Jananira Ukti" etc. He was also an influential speaker in Oriya, Bengali and English.

Last years[edit]

He sacrificed his whole life for the welfare of his country and people. He spent all his wealth for the sake of the country and declared himself as an insolvent. He died on 4 February 1934.[5] Mahatma Gandhi described him as a great Indian patriot who wore himself out in giving shape and reality to various nation-building schemes.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Utkal Gourav Madhusudan Das". odishafiles.com. 2012. Retrieved 4 February 2013. born on 28th April of 1848 to father Choudhuri Raghunath Das and mother Parvati Devi at Satyabhamapur of Cuttack district 
  2. ^ "National memorial for Madhusudan Das". news.oneindia.in. 2012. Retrieved 28 April 2012. his adopted daughter Sailabala Das 
  3. ^ "Our History". mslawcollege.org. 2012. Retrieved 28 April 2012. Ashutosh Mukherjee, the then Vice-Chancellor of Calcutta University who was a student of Utkal Gourab Madhusudan Das 
  4. ^ (PDF) http://www.odisha.gov.in/portal/LIWPL/event_archive/Events_Archives/47Death_Anniversary_of_Madhusudhan_Das.pdf.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  5. ^ Sampad, Shilpi; Panda, Namita (1 April 2012). "Forgotten Madhu<I>babu</I>". telegraphindia.com (Calcutta, India). Retrieved 4 February 2013. he passed away in Cuttack on February 4, 1934 

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