Suryakant Tripathi

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Suryakant Tripathi 'Nirala'
Suryakant Tripathi 'Nirala'
Born(1896-02-21)21 February 1896
Midnapore, Bengal Presidency, British India
Died15 October 1961(1961-10-15) (aged 65)
Allahabad, Uttar Pradesh, India
Pen nameNirala
OccupationWriter, poet, essayist, novelist
Notable worksSaroj Smriti, Raam Ki Shaktipuja
SpouseManohara Devi

Suryakant Tripathi (21 February 1896[1] – 15 October 1961), known by his pen name Nirala, was an Indian poet, novelist, essayist and story-writer. He also drew many sketches.


Tripathi was born on 21 February 1896 in Midnapore in Bengal. His family had roots in Unnao, Uttar Pradesh.[2] He participated in literary circles such as the Kavi Sammelan.[citation needed] Though a student of Bengali, Nirala took a keen interest in Sanskrit from the very beginning.[citation needed]

Nirala's life, barring short periods, was one long sequence of misfortunes and tragedies. His father, Pandit Ramsahaya Tripathi, was a government servant and was a tyrannical person. His mother died when he was very young. Nirala was educated in the Bengali medium at Mahishadal, Purba Medinipur.[3] However, after passing the matriculation exam, he continued his education at home by reading Sanskrit and English literature. Subsequently, he shifted to Lucknow and thence to village Gadhakola of Unnao district, to which his father originally belonged. Growing up, he gained inspiration from personalities like Ramakrishna Paramhansa, Swami Vivekananda, and Rabindranath Tagore.

After his marriage at a young age, Nirala learned Hindi at the insistence of his wife, Manohara Devi. Soon, he started writing poems in Hindi, instead of Bengali. After a bad childhood, Nirala had a few good years with his wife. But this phase was short-lived as his wife died when he was 20, and later his daughter (who was a widow) also expired. He also went through financial troubles during this time. During that phase, he worked for many publishers, worked as a proof-reader and also edited publications including Matvala[4] and Samanvaya.

Most of his life was somewhat in the Bohemian tradition. He wrote strongly against social injustice and exploitation in society. Since he was more or less a rebel, both in form and content, acceptance did not come easily. What he got in plenty was ridicule and derision. All this may have played a role in making him a victim of schizophrenia in his later life and he was admitted to Central Institute of Psychiatry, Ranchi.[5] (Incidentally Bengali poet Kazi Nazrul Islam (who was later declared national poet of Bangladesh) had also been admitted to the same institute for schizophrenia).

Nirala died in Allahabad on 15 October 1961. The world of Hindi literature is remarkable for ideological and aesthetic divisions.[citation needed] But today, the same reviled Nirala is one of the very few people in Hindi literature who are admired and respected by almost all, across all divisions.

Today, a park, Nirala Uddyan, an auditorium, Nirala Prekshagrah, and a degree college, Mahapran Nirala Degree College, in the Unnao District are named after him.[2] His life-size bust has been installed at the main market square of Daraganj, Allahabad, a place where he lived for most of his life. His family still lives in Daraganj, Allahabad. The road on which his modest house was situated is now named "Nirala Marg".


Many of Nirala's poems have been translated by the late scholar, David Rubin, which are available in the collections, A Season on the Earth: Selected Poems of Nirala (Columbia University Press, 1977), The Return of Sarasvati: Four Hindi Poets (Oxford University Press, 1993), and Of Love and War: A Chayavad Anthology (Oxford University Press, 2005). Nirala : Aatmhanta Astha was a critical analysis of his works written by Doodhnath Singh.[6]



  • Ram Ki Shakti Puja (राम की शक्ति पूजा)
  • Dhwani (ध्वनि)
  • Apara (अपरा)
  • Saroj Smriti (सरोज स्मृति)
  • Parimal (परिमल)
  • Priyatam (प्रियतम)
  • Anaamika (अनामिका, 1938)
  • Geetika (गीतिका)
  • Kukurmutta (कुकुरमुत्ता, 1941)
  • Adima (अणिमा)
  • Bela (बेला)
  • Naye Patte (नये पत्ते)
  • Archana (अर्चना)
  • Geet Gunj (गीतगुंज)
  • Aradhana (आराधना)
  • Tulsidas (तुलसीदास, 1938)
  • Janmabhumi (जन्मभूमि)
  • Jago Phir Ek Bar (जागो फिर एक बार)
  • Bhikshuk (भिक्षुक)
  • Todti Patthar (तोड़ती पत्थर)


  • Apsara (अप्सरा)
  • Alka (अलका)
  • Prabhavati (प्रभावती)
  • Nirupama (निरुपमा)
  • Chameli (चमेली)
  • Choti ki Pakad (चोटी की पकड़)
  • Indulekha (इन्दुलेखा)
  • Kale Karname (काले कारनामे)

Collections of stories[edit]

  • Chhaturi Chamar (चतुरी चमार)
  • Sukul ki Biwi (सुकुल की बीवी, 1941)
  • Sakhi (साखी)
  • Lily (लिली)
  • Devi (देवी)


  • Prabandha-Parichaya (प्रबंध परिचय)
  • Bangbhasha ka Uchcharan (बंगभाषा का उच्चारण)
  • Ravindra-Kavita-Kannan (रवीन्द्र-कविता-कानन)
  • Prabandh-Padya (प्रबंध पद्य)
  • Prabandh-Pratima (प्रबंध प्रतिमा)
  • Chabuk (चाबुक)
  • Chayan (चयन)
  • Sangraha (संग्रह)


  • Kullibhat (कुल्लीभाट)
  • Billesur Bakriha (बिल्लेसुर बकरिहा)


  • Anand Math (आनन्दमठ)
  • Vish-Vriksh (विष वृक्ष)
  • Krishnakant ka Vil (कृष्णकांत का विल)
  • Kapal Kundala (कपाल कुण्डला)
  • Durgesh Nandini (दुर्गेश नन्दिनी)
  • Raj Singh (राज सिंह)
  • Raj Rani (राज रानी)
  • Devi Chaudharani (देवी चौधरानी)
  • Yuglanguliya (युगलांगुलीय)
  • Chandrasekhar (चन्द्रशेखर)
  • Rajni (रजनी)
  • Sri Ramkrishna Vachnamrit (श्री रामकृष्ण वचनामृत)
  • Bharat mein Vivekanand (भारत में विवेकानंद)
  • Rajyog (राजयोग)


  1. ^ Ram Vilas Sharma (2002) Nirala ki sahitya sadhna, Part 1 (Biography). Rajkamal prakashan private limited. New Delhi. pp. 17, 443.
  2. ^ a b Famous Personalities Archived 16 October 2013 at the Wayback Machine Unnao district Official website.
  3. ^ "Mahishadal Raj College". College Admission. Retrieved 9 April 2019.
  4. ^ Ruth Vanita, "The New Homophobia: Ugra's Chocolate", in Same-Sex Love in India: Readings in Indian Literature, ed. by Ruth Vanita, Saleem Kidwai (New York: Palgrave, 2000), pp. 246-52 (p. 246).
  5. ^ निराला, नज़रुल, मजाज़ भी रहे हैं रांची पागलखाने में – BBC News हिंदी. Retrieved on 13 December 2018.
  6. ^ "Nirala : Aatmhanta Astha". Rajkamal Prakashan. Retrieved 14 January 2018.

External links[edit]