Dr.° Birinchi Kumar Barua is a man possessing versatility. He was a scholar, linguist, novelist, storyteller, playwright, manager, translator, folklorist, travel and biography writer, book magazine editor and compiler, textbook writer of schools in geography, history etc., a lifelong researcher of Assamese folk culture. Importantly, Dr.° Barua has done research in the field of Assamese language literature by renowned linguists Dr.° Maheshwar Neog, Dr.° Satyendra Nath Sharma, Dr.° Goswami.
Biography of Birinchi Kumar Baruah
|Name||Birinchi Kumar Barua|
|Date of Birth||16 October 1908|
|Place of Birth||Puranigudam, Nagaon District|
|Father’s Name||Vijay Ram Baruah|
|Mother’s Name||Lilavati Baruah|
|Education||1. Nagaon Government School|
2. Presidency College, Kolkata
3. University of London
|Awards||Sahitya Akademi Award (1964)|
|Death||30 March 1964|
Early life of Birinchi Kumar Barua
Birinchi Kumar Barua, who played an important role in enriching the field of Assamese fiction was born on October 16, 1908 at the Puranigudam in Nagaon. His father’s name was Bijay Ram Barua and his mother’s name was Lilavati Barua.
Birinchi Kumar Barua who started formal education in Nagaon passed the entrance examination from Nagaon Government School in 1928. He subsequently studied at Presidency College in Kolkata. In 1930, Barua passed IA in first division and passed BA in 1932. with honours in Pali language. Importantly, he was awarded with the Ishan Scholarship for his outstanding performance by securing the first position in his BA examination. He is one of the few Ishan scholars from Assam, till date. In 1934, he passed MA, in Pali language from Calcutta University, again standing first in the University. Barua, who post graduated in 1934 after graduating from first grade, subsequently studied at the University of London. It may be recalled that he received a doctorate degree from the University of London in 1948 by researching the cultural history of Assam. The name of his research book is- A Cultural History of Assam.
Also Read : Biography of Padmadhar Chaliha
Dr.° Barua, who started his career as a professor at Calcutta University in 1938, also served as a professor at Cotton College for few days. He also served as a Visiting Professor of Indian Folklore culture at the Indiana University Bloomington, in the US for 8 months, sponsored by the Rockfeller Foundation. There he became a close association of Dr. Richard Mercer Dorson, commonly known as the “father of American folklore”. Importantly, Dr.° Barua has played an important role in establishing Guwahati University, at Jalukbari where a large edifice was later built in his name – Brinchi Kumar Barua Auditorium – cum – Lecture Theatre. Importantly, Dr.° Birinchi Barua honoured Kalaguru of the Arts Department of Guwahati University and later retired from the University as a Kalaguru.
In 1961, he visited the D.H.S.K. College at Dibrugarh and found that there was a scope for a separate and independent, commerce college in the city. He suggested to the authorities of the D.H.S.K. College to separate the commerce the commerce section of the college so as to form a full-fledged commerce college. This was how the D.H.S.K. Commerce College was organised as a separate entity. Subsequently, in 1962, he was mainly responsible for setting up the Gauhati Commerce College, where the college’s library has been name after him.
One of the brightest astrologers in the Assamese literary world is Dr.° Birinchi Kumar Barua. Barua, who made his debut in the 20th century through Aawahan magazine, is a notable feature of Assamese prose literature. He was a member of the Indian Film Censor Board and a founder member of the Indian Language Commission constituted by the Government of India. He was the founder of the socio-cultural organisation Assam Academy for Cultural Relations, which still survives, established mainly to forge harmony and unity amongst the various peoples of the North East, belonging to different casts, creeds, and tribes.
By the time he left England, he had written several short stories, a short history of Assamese literature, and perhaps one if the most important novels in modern Assamese literature, ‘Jivanar Batot.‘
Birinchi Kumar Barua hones popularity as one of the best novelists of modern times. Dr.° Barua reflects a perfect picture of rural society through his novels, on the way to life as a milestone in Assamese novel literature. His novel written in 1955, Seuji Pataar Kahani, is based on the life in a tea garden of Assam. Dr.° Barua, is also known as a worthwhile classic novelist and epic novelist, he is one of the best novelists in Assamese literature. Some of his other notable publications are – Pat Parivartan (1948), Aghoni Bai (1950), Kavya Aru Abhvyanjans (1941), Asamiya Katha Sahitya (1957) etc.
Dr.° Baruah is one of the most popular in modern novels. His novels created a stir during the post-war period. Another feature of the novels of Dr° Birinchi Kumar Barua is the implementation of the Assamese lower middle class, the study of Assamese rural character, the basic depiction of family life and the mental expression of the character are beautifully reflected in his novels.
During his visit to Switzerland and his visit to the US Dr.° Birinchi Kumar Barua wrote travel books. His travel books are – Switzerland Bhraman (1948), Professor Baruar Chithi (1968). It may be recalled that through his book published in 1968, Dr.° Barua explained the details of American education, culture, customs etc. Importantly, Dr.° Maheshwar Neog called Dr.° Birinchi Kumar Barua a travel literature guide.
Dr.° Birinchi Kumar Barua’s contribution was not only in the field of story, novels but also in the discussion of literary culture, the consideration of language theory, the study of folk culture, etc. Birinchi Kumar Barua gained fame not only at the national level but also internationally in the field of study and research in culture. His research books are – Asomar Loka Sanskriti (1961), Assamese Katha Sahitya (1950), Asamiya Bhasa Aru Sanskriti (1957). He also wrote in English as well as Assamese Literature, It may be recalled that Dr.° Barua was posthumously honoured with the Sahitya Akademi Award in 1964 for his book Asomar Loka Sanskriti published in 1961.
Dr.° Birinchi Kumar Barua’s edited book Ankia Nat is one of the best edited book. It may be recalled that Dr.° Birinchi Kumar Barua translated Rabindranath Thakur’s Chitrangada into Assamese.
One of the features of Birinchi Kumar Barua’s literary career is that the language and prose style of his article are as charming and explanatory as the novel. He offers narrative topics without using any hard words in the composition in parallel with the use of strong language that is commonly understood without complexity in the description. He does not use unnecessary long sentences.
Dr.° Birinchi Kumar Barua, has enriched the intellectual and literary world of Assam by performing a variety of tasks in various fields in this short span of time. He is a great man in the world of Assamese language, literature and culture. Importantly, Birinchi Kumar Barua also played an important role in the inclusion of Assamese subjects in BA and IA classes at Calcutta University in 1938 in parallel with other Assamese students studying in Kolkata.
Dr.° Birinchi Kumar Barua who has been associated with lifelong teaching, was popular and respected not only at his homeland but also abroad. Dr.° Barua, who has a devoted pursuit of Assamese literature, is the pride of Assam and the Assamese. Dr.° Barua’s inartificial and immense love for his homeland is the path for the new generation. Dr.° Barua, a strong personality and high-thinking personality, is a literary, educationist, folk culture researcher as well as a dedicated social worker.
Dr.° Birinchi Kumar Barua, who died on March 30, 1964, has enriched Assamese literary culture in various and diverse ways and inspired the later writers of the Rainbow era.
1. When and where was Birinchi Kumar Barua born?
Ans: Birinchi Kumar Barua was born on 16 October 1908 at Puranigudam, Nagaon District.
2. When did he won Sahitya Akademi Award and for which book he won Sahitya Akademi Award?
Ans: Barua was the winner of the Sahitya Akademi Award in 1964 for his book in Assamese titled Asomar Loka Sanskrit, awarded posthumously in February 1965.
3. Name some of his novels and short stories.
Ans: ‘Jivanar Batot’ (1946), ‘Seuji Pathar Kahini’ (1959), ‘Pat Parivartan’ (1948), ‘Aghoni Bai’ (1950) etc.
4. Name two travel books written by him.
Ans: ‘Switzerland Bhraman’ (1941), ‘Professor Baruar Chithi’ (1968).
5. When did Dr.° Birinchi Kumar Barua died?
Ans: Dr.° Birinchi Kumar Barua, died on March 30, 1964,
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