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Bongaon High School gets new arch in Bibhutibhushan Bandopadhyay’s name - GetBengal story

29 November, 2023 17:34:28
Bongaon High School gets new arch in Bibhutibhushan Bandopadhyay’s name - GetBengal story

Bongaon High School, Bongaon, North 24 Paraganas

Bibhutibhushan Bandyopadhyay, one of the greatest novelists of Bengal was born on 12th September, 1894 in his maternal residence in Muratipur near Kalyani. Bibhutibhushan’s grandfather Tarini Charan Bandyopadhyay, a successful Ayurveda practitioner left his ancestral home in Panitar, Basirhat and settled in the village of Barakpur in Bongaon sometime before 1859 when the Indigo Revolt broke out in Bengal. Bibhutibhushan’s father Mahanando went to school in Bongaon and later to Varanasi to learn Sanskrit and the Hindu scriptures. He was a travelling narrator, a wandering minstrel earning his bread by narrating stories from Hindu Mythologies in village gatherings. Mahanando’s first wife Hemangini was childless. His second wife Mrinalini gave birth to five children, Bibhutibhushan being the eldest.

Bust of Bibhutibhushan Bandyopadhyay

Bibhutibhushan's education started at the village school. He used to study in “Bongram Uccha Vidyalaya.” The ancient history of Bongaon is intertwined with the literary legend, Bibhutibhushan Bandopadhyay. It is known that he did not have enough money to take admission in the school which is why he was stopped at the gate of the school. But what an irony! Today the gate of that very school is being named after the legend himself. We gather from the life and times of Bibhutibhushan Bandyopadhyay that his mother collected whatever funds she could find and gave it to her son Bibhutibhushan and sent him to an urban school to study. Bibhutibhushan used to travel along Ichamati River and had to cross a long road to reach the school. Every day he had to walk for around 8 kilometres to reach his school and had a tiring journey. He was very keen to study in that school but he knew that the money that his parents had was not enough to get admission. Still, he used to go and stand in front of the gate with the yearning to swim in the sea of knowledge. Even though he was unable to enter the school, he found a way to walk around the school just to get a feel and touch of the place. Then every day he would walk back home as if he was going home after a school day. That was how passionate the writer was about his school.


Again, the next day he did the same, he came all the way from his home, stood in front of the gate, walked around the school and went home. He wanted to take admission in the big school of Bongaon in whatever way possible. He had explored the building from outside, the big building with an “L” pattern, the huge classrooms- everything fascinated little Bibhutibhushan. He still could not muster the courage to enter the building as he did not have the full fees. However, one day he returned and somehow decided with all his courage to cross the gate and finally enter the school building, something he had not done so long. He was still a kid and did not have any guardian along with him and was unaware of where he had to go to take admission. Someone spotted him roaming around within the school premises and asked him where he wanted to go. Bibhutibhushan asked where the admission office was and the person showed him the way.

He went inside the office and his worst fear came true; he did not have enough money to take admission. Coincidentally, the same person who showed him the way was passing by the office. He saw that the child was so enthusiastic about studying that he had brought even the last bit of funds from his mother. That individual was none other than Charuchandra Mukhopadhyay, the Headmaster of the School. He was so impressed by the boy’s penchant for learning that he gave the remaining fees from his own pocket and admitted Bibhutibhushan in his school. He had always been a talented student and secured first division in both the Entrance and the Intermediate of Arts examinations. Just imagine what would have happened if the little boy hadn’t entered the gates that day!

After so many years, the entrance of the school is getting an arch with Bibhutibhushan Bandopadhyay’s name on it. Kunal Dey, the current Headmaster of Bongaon High School said: “We took special initiative towards installing this arch. The teachers and the students are really happy with this initiative. We are proud that such a great man was once a part of our school.” The arch will symbolise the history of the school and will also encourage the students to know more about the legendary alumni and about the author himself. It will inspire the students to be better students as well.

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