D. D. Thacker

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D. D. Thacker (1884–1961) better known was Diwan Bahadur D. D. Thacker, FRSA[1] was a noted coal miner and philanthropist from Jharia, Dhanbad.[2]


He was born in a Gujarati family in Bhuj in Princely State of Cutch and did his preliminary education there.[2] He was attracted to coal mining business due to his connection with Mistris of Kutch, who had taken leadership in Jharia coal mining belt.[3] He started his career in coal mining in 1905[2] and in partnership with Seth Khora Ramji & Brothers purchased Pure Jharia Colliery located in Jharia.[3] After death of Seth Khora Ramji in 1923, however, he became sole proprietor of Pure Jharia Colliery, purchasing the stake from heirs of Khora Ramji.[3] Later on he vigorously expanded his coal mining as well coal trading business and purchased several mines in Bengal & Bihar.[3]

He was among the dignitaries, who shared dais in historic All India Trade Union Congress meeting held at Jharia in 1928 along with Ramjush Agarwalla, Karamshi Khora, Chhaganlal Karamshi Parekh and others.[4]

He was first made Rao Bahadur by British in 1939 and later elevated to the title of Diwan Bahadur in 1942.[2] He was noted for his research and development of coal mining technology and was a regular face in debate over various government policies in coal mines forums in early 20th century.[5]

During his lifetime he held several posts like, Chairman and Secretary of the Indian Mining Federation,[6][7] the President of The Geological, Mining and Metallurgical Society of India,[8][3] Further, he also held post of Honorary First Class Magistrate of Jhaira[1] He also served as President of the Bihar Chamber of Commerce, the Indian Colliery Owners' Association in his lifetime.[9][3] He was among the patron and trustees of Jharia Anglo-Gujarati School.[3]

In 1928–29, Pure Jharia Colliery owned by him started a primary school for the benefit of the children of labour working in his mines. Further, in 1939–40, he also started a Labour's School in Jharia to train labours for coalmines, the school was then called Rao Bahadur D. D. Thacker's Labourers' School.[3] In 1954, he donated money to award a Gold Medal called Dewan Bahadur D. D. Thacker Coal Mining Gold Medal to be awarded annually for works of merit and research in field of coal mining.[10] Even today the above gold medal award is considered to be very prestigious and awarded annually by The Mining, Geological and Metallurgical Institute of India to persons excelling in field of coal mines industry in India.[3][11] In 1954 he also donated money to commemorate a running shield trophy for sports held in coal mining community.[3][12]

In 1930, he was among the delegation, which attended the International Labour Conference at Geneva, which he attended along with Amritlal Ojha, the Indian employers' delegate from Jharia.,[13] when he extensively traveled Europe & England[3] and was also among the guests at Blyth Harbour Survey.[13]

He died in 1961 and his coal mine business was carried on by his sons under name and style of D. D. Thacker & Sons, which was finally taken over by Government of India after nationalization of coal mines in 1972.[3][14]


  1. ^ a b Proceedings of the Indian Science Congress, Volume 36, 1949 :Thacker, DD, Diwan Bahadur, MIME, FRSA, (Lond.), Honorary Magistrate (First Class), Colliery Owner, Pure Jharia Colliery, Jharia (Manbhum).
  2. ^ a b c d Quarterly journal of the Geological, Mining and Metallurgical Society of India, Volumes 23–24. 1951. pp. lvii, xxii. 
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l Diary of Golden Days at Jharia – A Memoir & History of Gurjar Kashtriya Samaj of Kutch in Coalfields of Jharia – written by Natwarlal Devram Jethwa of Calcutta compiled by Raja Pawan Jethwa published in 1998 in English. (The book gives detail and names of pioneers KGK Community as well other communities in Jharia coalfields also like NH Ojha & Amritlal H. Ojha, Kriparshankar Worah & Jatashankar Dossa Chanchani as Chanchani & Worah, Kesabji Pitambar, Agarwalla brothers, Karamchand Thapar, Diwan Bahadur DD Thacker, Kalyanji Mavji, Seth Jhurumal, Ram Saran Das, etc. Further, a brief life-sketch of Mistris of Kutch – Seth Khora Ramji Chawda of Sinugra, Govamal Jeewan Chauhan of Kumbharia, Jagmal Gangji & many others.) – A brief life sketch of Diwan Bahadur D. D. Thacker – page 25.
  4. ^ AITUC—fifty years: documents, Volume 1. 1973. p. 108. 
  5. ^ Second World War and Indian industry, 1939–45: a case study of the coal industry in Bengal and Bihar by Bishwa Mohan Prasad. 1991. 
  6. ^ Peripheral Labour: Studies in the History of Partial Proletarianization edited by Shahid Amin, Marcel van der Linden-1997- Page 94
  7. ^ Indian annual register, Volume 1. 1940. p. 55. 
  8. ^ Journal of scientific and industrial research, Volume 6. Council of Scientific & Industrial Research. 1947. p. 40. 
  9. ^ Quarterly Journal of the Geological, Mining and Metallurgical Society of India. The Society. 1951. 
  10. ^ Progress of the mineral industry of India, 1906–1955. Mining, Geological, and Metallurgical Institute of India. 1956. p. 33. 
  12. ^ Indian labour gazette: Volume 12, 1954
  13. ^ a b The Colliery Guardian and Journal of the Coal and Iron Trades, Volume 141, 1930:pp 335
  14. ^ Coking Coal Nationalisation Act of 1972 – D. D. Thacker & Sons, Pure Jharia Colliery