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Freedom Movements at Contai

 

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Movements

The people of Contai Sub-Division and the adjacent areas have had to fight continually, for their survival with numerous invaders, with wild animals of land and sea, with cyclones and tornadoes, with flood and drought all through the chequered history of the race. Consequently, they have become, men or women, boy or girl, as much apprehensive, as jealous of their right and as brave to fight on for it.This is evident from people’s participation,en masse,in every national movement and in settling local issues.

Malangi Revolt (1793-1804)

The East India Company,that took over the rule of Bengal in 1772,monopolized the profitable salt-business in 1781.The Salt Department was created and,towards the end of the century,Contai or Kanthi became its headquarter.From Nimak Mahal (Salt Factory)built on a sand – mound at Contai in 1788,the business of the coastal area was conducted.Mahatma Gandhi, Iswar Chandra Pramanik at Khejuri on 03/01/1946

Production of Salt & the Malangis:
Salt was produced from the saline earth of the low-land areas often flooded by the sea.It was a strenuous job to produce salt from saline earth and water by means of evaporation and filtration process.Only poor people would agree to engage themselves in this job and very often workers were forced to do it. The workers who produced salt were called the Malangis.

Their Grievances
The exploitation was stretched to the extreme point .Wages were very low.Workers were sometimes forced to work gratis.They would have give presents to the company personnel. The work was so unpaying, so laboursome and loathsome to some that they tried to flee.

Revolt
The Malangis, to redress their grievances, formed a crisis committee in 1793. the leaders were Ram Dinda, Bhawagan Maity, Haru Mandal, Haru Patra, Jaydev Sahu and Baisnav Bhunia. On 29th April, 1800, Malangis from Birkul, Digha, & Mirgoda came in procession to Kanthi. The Malangi leader of Birkul, Balai Kundu, lead the procession. They made the salt-agents and handed a petition to him but to no effect.


Premananda or Paramananda
In Tamluk – Hijli – Kanthi region, 60 thousand Malangis were engaged in salt – producing job. Agitation spread all over the area. In 1804, Paramananda (alias, Premamanda) sarkar united the Malangis of all salt producing centers of the area. They laid seige to the salt agency headquarter at Kanthi.When the leader Mr. Sarkar was arrested, the Malangis were greately agitated and the situation went out of control. Only when all the demands of the Malangis were conceded, the movement come to an end.

 

About Midnapore district the British Govt. remarked, “It is a land of Revolt”. The Government that had to confront so many revolts and uprisings here that it was natural for it to make the remark. And regarding the participation of people in these uprisings, irrespective of sex, age, social rank or class, the coastal area of the district including Contai Sub-Division claims special mentioning. The history of the Sub-Division from 1905 to 1942 will easily substantiate this claim.

1905 to 1942:-

On 8th July 1905, the Reuter announced the final decision of the British Government on partition of Bengal, in response the Congress adopted “Boycott Resolution” at its Bagerhat Conference on 16th July. Contai Sub-Division carried out this resolution with guts and determination.

Boycott Movement at Kanthi:
A meeting was convened in order to collect capital needed to introduce Handloom in the area. It was proposed by Birendranath Sasmal that they should donate one-day’s earning for the cause and it was seconded by Munsi Mahiuddin. Other speakers – Banabihari Mukhopaddhaya, Pramathanath Bandhopaddhaya, Dwariknath Dhar and Bidubhusan Giri also gave animated speeches stressing the need of the cottage industry to boycott foreign cloth. The meeting was attended by a very large number of people. In consequence of this movement, Hand-Loom industry developed in the area and Amarshi flourished as a center of it.

Gagan Chandra Rana
One Instance, told by Basanta Kumar Das in his “Swadhinata Sangrami Medinipur” and referred to by Prashanta Pramanik in his “Romanthan”, may suffice to show how the Boycott Movement was carried on to every door with zell. Gagan Chandra Rana was then a boy of 9 or 10. According to his reminiscence, he had been a volunteer and his duty had been to visit, with come comrades, every house in the locality and urge aunts or sisters to break their glass-bangles. In the evening the boy had to give report to his grand father about the effect of their errand.

Khejuri
The considerate volunteers in Khejuri Police Station made a maneuver to serve their purpose without causing much loss to the shopkeepers. They would stamp all the cloths of the old stock. These cloths were declared saleable. But if any un-stamped foreign cloth came to market, it would be destroyed for it meant new importation. Adequate step would be taken against the guilty shopkeepers.
Imprisonment for five Volunteers
A fair to place on the occasion of “Dol-Purnima” at Thakurnagar in Khejuri Police Station. Five young volunteers were picketing protesting against the sale of foreign goods. The shopkeepers tried to drive them away and a skirmish between them ensued. In consequence, the police lodged a penal suit against the volunteers. The volunteers were

i) Kshirode Narayan Bhunia - Ikshupatrika
(M.A.B.L)
ii) Sasibhusan Bera - Jukhia
iii) Srishitidhar Jana - Jhinukkhali
iv)Jaminikanta Paria - Thakurnagar
v) Ramesh Chandra Mandal - Thakurnagar

The Contai Court sentenced them to imprisonment for 10 months. Though the district court retained the verdict, the High Court, on appeal, reduced the term to 3 months. The famous barrister Mr. A. Chowdhury was the defense council in the case. The first named accused Kshirod Narayan Jana later became well known as a layer of the High Court.

Mugberia and Digambar Nanda
The landlord of Mugberia was one of the most ardent patrons of the National Movement. He came in contact with Kshudiram who set a training camp in the Balageria lodging of Mr. Nanda. Kshudiram taught local youths Martial Art with staffs, knives and daggers in the camp.

Itaberia
Under the patronage of Digambar Nanda and Kshudiram, a powerful body of volunteers were formed. This “Body” traveled from market to market carrying on the Boycott – Campaign. One day at Itaberia, the volunteers threw sacks of imported salt into a nearly stream and set fire to the foreign cloths. The volunteers involved in the action were –

i) Kshirod Narayan Bhunia- Ikshupatrika
ii) Kshirode Bidhu Jana- Porah Chingri
iii) Bamacharan Das -Tanguria
iv) Ashutosh Dey- Kisorepur
v) Kshirode Chandra Pradhan- Bhimeswari
vi) Baikunthanath Das -Bhimeswari

Bhupatinagar
Rajanikanta Pradhan organized a camp there. Kshudiram, the coach of the camp, trained young men how to use staff, knife and sword in defense. The volunteers also used to campaign against the use of foreign good and imported glass-bangles.

The Pleaders of Kanthi
The pleaders of Kanthi were the forerunners of the Movement in the town. The first Swadeshi Sabha (Meeting for National Cause) was presided over by the aged pleader, Upendranath Majumder. The pleader, Manik Chandra Bharh, presided over another meeting. In these meetings, oaths used to be taken as to boycotting foreign goods and mentioning unity in society.
Other Pleaders
Nagendra Chandra Bakshi (Secretary many social organizations), Pramatha Nath Bandopadhyay, Bidubhusan Giri, Ganesh Chandra Tala, Suresh Chandra Maity were connected with the Movement at Kanthi. And, of course, young Birendranath Sasmal was in all of these activities.

Chhatra Bhandar (Students’ Stores)
In the town, Chhatra Bhandar or Students’ Stores was opened by the pleaders as ancillary to the Boycott Movement. Its purpose was to provide people with National Commodities at a reasonable price.

‘Neehar’
A weekly journal, “Neehar”, used to be published. It would contain writings on the National Movement.
Other campaign Centres
The ace-rebel of Medinipur, Kshudiram, found a fertile land in this area to sow the revolutionary seed. He found allies ion landlord of Mugberia, Digambar Nanda, and many others, and with their co-operation, sprang up many campaign centers in the area. Of them the important ones were at
i) panchet, ii) Panchrole, iii) Kajlagarh, iv) Bayanda, v) Mugberia, vi) Henria, vii) Deypal, viii) Kalindi, ix) Deuli, x) Khejuri, xi) Majna, xii) Baliya xiii) Chandibheti xiv) Kajla xv) Chunfuli xvi) Bahiri xvii) Basantia xviii) Banamali Chatta

When Kshudiram was summoned by his secret organization leader to carry out a secret operation, he stayed with Ashutosh Dey in his house at Kishorepore. On 11th August, 1908, Kshudiram was hanged. But revolution work went on.

 

 

 

NON – CO-OPERATION MOVEMENT 1920-1922

Decision:

In September, 1920, in the Kolkata meeting of the Congress, which was presided over by Lala Lajpat Roy, the decision of Non-co-operation Movement was taken by majority vote and the undisputed leader of Contai Sub-division, Birendranath Sasmal, voted for it.

Advice to People:

As a part of the movement, people, particularly educated ones, were advised that they should-

Abdicate titles, honorary posts or nomination to local self-governing organizations;

Stay away from Govt.or semi-Govt.functions;

Delink themselves from Govt.or Govt.-aided schools and colleges and at the same establish national schools and colleges.

(For pleaders and Mukhtars or attorney) boycott courts and make organizations for the purpose of settling disputes;

Refuse to go abroad as soldiers, clerks or labours;

Withdraw nomination from Govt Council;

Boycott all foreign goods.

 

RESPONSE OF PEOPLE

People connected with legal practice.

The first person to objure practice was Birendranath Sasmal and the notable ones of Contai town to follow suit were-

Bipin Behari Adhikary (Pleader)

Surendranath Das (Mukter)

Udaynarayan Mondal (Mohorar)

 

Teacher to resign

Many teachers gave resignation in conformity to the instructed. The notable ones of them were-

Nikunja Behari Maity

Pareshnath Maity

Girish Chandra Maity

Pramatha Nath Bandopadhyay

Iswar Chandra Mal

Aghore Chandra Das

Panchulal Ghosh

Padmalochan Sahu

 

Students leaving Institutions

Many meritorious students, in ulterdisregard of a bright career and the prospect of a life of comfort, came out of the “Servent –Making Institutions “in a good number in response to the call of their leaders, to the call of their motherland. Many of them suffered silently, leaving no record of them. Some of them survived till the freedom of India, and shone and made their marks in different fields. The names of some of them are as follows (given alphabetically).

Aghore Chandra Paria

Amarendra Das

Anil Kumar Mukherjee

Balai Lal Dasmahapatra

Banabehari Guria

Bankim Chandra Barik

Bankim Chandra Nanda

Basanta Kumar Das

Bhimacharan Patra

Bhuteswar Poira

Bhibhuti Bhusan Maity

Bijoy Krishna Maity

Digambar Panda

Dwariknath Giri

Gopal Maity

Gnanendra Maity

Gnanendra Manna

Haripada Baguli

Jibankrishna Maity

Kangal Chandra Giri

Khagendranath Sasmal

Manindra Nath Pradhan

Nabin Chandra Mahapatra

Narendranath Maity

Nilmoni Das

Panchanan Giri

Prabhat Chandra Maity

Prasanna Kumar Das

Prasanna Kumar Giri

Raghunath Maity

Rakhal Chandra Maity

Satadal Kumar Mandal

Santosh Jana

Santosh Singha

Sarachchandra Das

Sashise

 

National Schools

The landlords, well-off and educated people of the locality joined hands with revolting teachers and students to establish national schools, which became nurseries of new hope, new ideals and the centers of revolutionary activities. Some of these schools are referred to below.

Kalagetchia National Schools

On 1st March,1921,was established Kalagachia National School, witch was inaugurated by Birendra Nath Sasmal.The landlord,Jagadish Chandra Maity,donated land for the school and became the founder Secretary of the school.Nikunja Behari Maity,who resigned the post of the Headmaster of Khejuri and who after independence became one of ministers of West Bengal, was the first Headmaster of the National School.Paresh Nath Maity was first The Assistant Headmaster and became Headmaster when Mr. Nikunja Behari Maity left the job to pay better service to the Congress.

Other teachers and members of the staff were

Surendra Nath Sankha-Tirtha(Headpandit)

Bhibhuti Bhusan Maity (College leaving Student)

Hemchandra Rout (College leaving Student)

Kenaram Pal (Spinning loom and sewing-instructor)

 

Along with them; an aged person, Mr. Barendra Nath Maity, some other college leaving students and the teachers of Kalagetchia Minor School also joined the staff of the National High School.

Acharya Prafulla Chandra Roy

On 15th Jauary, 1924, Acharya Prafulla Chandra Roy visited the school and spoke highly of the courage, patriotism and dedication of the students of the National School.

Kanthi National School

National School was established in the town. Students from Kanthi Model Institution, Kanthi High School and from neighbouring schools got admission to the National School. In public meetings, the students would have to declare on oath that they would not go back to the “servant-making factories “they had abandoned. Among these students, was Mahendra Nath Karan from Kanthi High School, who wrote many patriotic songs, a book of verse Banglaksmir Bratakatha (meant for national propaganda) and two valuable historical books “Hijlir Masnad-I-Ala”and Khejuri Bandar”.

Birendra Nath offered his house at kanthi to house the National School and Satish Chandra Jana, who left studies to join the non-co-operation movement, became the Secretary.

The staff who left higher studies to serve the cause of the movement.

Atul Chandra Sasmal

Bhuteswar Paria

Gnanendranath Manna

Anil Kumar Mukherjee

Jiban Krishna Maity (Law –student,temporary Headmaster)

 

Teachers of Govt.-aided scools leaving their job

Iswar Chandra Mal

Pramatha Nath Banerjee

Panchulal Ghosh

Aghore Chandra Das

Padmalochan Sahu

 

Others

Debendranath Kbya-byakaran-tirtha

Basanta Kumar Das

Moitab Ali Mian

Jhareswar Das

Raghunath Maity (Kavya-tirtha)

Troilakyanath Pradhan

Surendranath Das

Prafulla Kumar Maity

Pulin Behari Pal

 

For Practical Traning

Anil Kumar Mukherjee (spinning wheel)

Biharilal Maity (Handloom)

Ramesh Chandra Rana (Iron –work)

 

New Building for the School

Haripada Pahari,one of the members of the School’s managing committee, donated two bighas of land in Chandrabagan where the new building for the school was built. Teachers and students took part in building – construction as volunteers.

Illustrious visitors of the school.

Illustrious visitors like Mahatma Gandhi; Babu Rajendra Prasad who later became the President of India, Jamuna Lal Bajaj honoured the building by setting their feet in its precincts.

Functions of Teachers and Students

The Functions of teachers and students were not confined to a stereo typed curriculum based on book learning. On the contrary, their regularly took part in different kinds of social service. They settled disputes among people through mutual understanding without the legal help of the court. They worked to get the society rid off apartheid, practice of untouchability or racial segregation, to keep up communal harmony, to spray the culture of Hindi and to popularize the spinning wheel and handloom cloths.

Ayurvedic College.

 

Kabiraj Raghunath Maity, Kabya-Tirtha, Baidya-Sastri, relinquished the Govt. Scholarship, passed from “Kalikata Baidyasastrapith” with distinction and started an Ayurvedic College at Kanthi named “Baidyak Pathsala”. Raghunath was man of rare dedication. The man remained bachelor all through his life, suffered imprisonment, bore his sufferings patiently and worked for the cause of the Country, for the cause of ailing people. He wrote patriotic songs and poems and books on Ayurvedic Treatment as well. The institution he founded is still there bearing his name as “Raghunath Ayurvedic College”.

Banamali Chatta

At Banamali Chatta, …… Km from Kanthi town, there had been a Middle English school. Sibaprasad Jana was a landlord of the village was the president of the School’s Managing Committee. His son Satish Chandra Jana had one year’s imprisonment resulting from his participation in the Non-Co-operation Movement. When, after end of the prison term, Satis Chandra was released, a meeting was convened to pay him honour. In this meeting it was decided that the Middle English school would be termed to a National School and would refused to take Govt. aid. Surendranath Das, a layer with good practice, gave up his practice to be the head master of the National School.

National School at Mirzapur, Bayenda and Bhabanichauk

The wave of National feeling swift over the Sub-Division and middle and primary National Schools were established in some other places. At Mirzapur, ……. Km from Kanthi town, a National School was set up. Sasisekhar Mandal, a rebel-student of higher studies, was its head master and Gnada Charan Maity was his assistant.

Bayenda, a village ……..km from Kanthi, also had a National School. Its head master was Bhima Charan Patra and Amarendra Maity was the assistant teacher.

Bhawanichak is a village in Egra Police Station, which was then in Contai Sub-Division. Here was established a National Middle English School with the name “The First Pathagar”. Radhashyam Das, Bankim Chandra Das, Prankrishna Sahu and others from the teaching staff.

Crises faced by the schools and their effect.

As the teacher,students,members of M/C’s and the patrons were jailed, harassed or were removed elsewhere by political whirlwind and the schools faced serious economic crisis, most of the National Schools could not continue for long. But the ideals they stood for lingered long and had their effect on people.

‘Boycott Board’ or ‘No-Tax’Movement 1921 March to 1921 December.

Bengal Village Self-Govt.Act.

As the Non-Co-Operation movement was going on in full swing all through the Midnapore District, a local issue added fuel to fire. Unwisely the British Government tried to implement the Bengal Village Self-Govt.Act, which had been passed in 1919, in Midnapore District. In conformity with the Act, Union Boards were formed first in Kanthi and Ramnagar.Contai Sub-division was set on fire.

People’s resentment but the Board formed.

There was reason for people to suspect that it was only a play for the Government to tighten its hold over them and exploit them further through semi-puppet Boards. They appealed to the Government to repeal the Act.The local newspapers like ‘Neeihar’ that, came out from Kanthi and ‘Medinibandhava’ coming out from Medinipur town went on ventilating people’s grievances and the strong anti-Union Board feeling of them.However, the government was adament.Election to Kanthi Union Board was conducted and the members, as per the law, were nomited.On March 11, the Contai S.D.O.summoned the elected and nominated members to form the Board.

Birendranath’s dilemma-

At the Bengal Provincial Congress Conference at Barisal,Birendranath moved a resolution to fight the Union Boards in which people were asked not pay Union and village taxes and the resolution was carried through .However, the Executive Council of Bengal Provincial Congress, rather overstepping its limit,’ exercised veto’ on it. It was also known to him that Gandhiji was against no-tax movement as an all-India policy. At the same time, his local associates and followers, the people of Kanthi and Medinipur wanted him to lead them in their fight with the Union Boards.Moreover,he believed the Union Boards, so formed by the faulty law will aggravate people’s condition. Naturally, he decided to stand by the people of his sub-division and district in their distress and to lead them.

Movement against Union Board.

The Congress Associates of Birendranath,the teachers and students of the National Schools organized meetings and conferences to highlight the defects of the law. Even the elected and nominated members would be requested to be present at the meetings and offer their views so that people could make their own opinions. The first meeting on the issue of boycotting. Union Boards was held at Kanthi sometime in May 1921 [Vide, ‘Romanthan’ by Prasantha Pramanik] In another meeting in May, a member of the newly formed ‘Kanthi Union Board’.Mr.Rakhal Chandra Jana, announced his decision to resign his membership. Within this month mammoth meeting was organized at Darua, about 2 km.from Kanthi town. Leaders like Taraknath Pal, Pramathanath Bandopadhyay, Surendranath Das, along with Birendranath Sasmal, were on the dais. It was resolved that the implementation of the Self-Govt.Act would be presented. From the dais, the members of the Board were requested to stop down.

Reaction of people & Board members.

Thereafter, at and around Kanthi, meetings and campaigns were a useful feature. People swore to boycott the Board and not to pay tax. The members of the Board, Kedarnath Das, Gnanendra Maity, Brajendranath Das, Amar Nandi and Taraknath Pal put in their resignation. The movement brought the Hindus and Muslims closer to each other and they stood up together for the success of boycott movement.

Two instances

That people were ready to go the whole hog and endure every eventuality to make the movement successful may become apparent from two instances, one recorded by Birendranath himself in his autobiographical book ‘Sroter Trina’[A Straw in a Stream],and another told by Mr.Prasanta Pramanik in his memoir book ‘Romanthan’.

The incident referred to by Birendranath.

The President of a Union Board in Ramnagar police station filed a case against seven persons, tax-payers within his jurisdiction, complaining of intrusion and damages of properly. In fact, these persons belonging to Fatepur village refused to pay tax and maltreated the collector. The accused persons were sent to jail for fifteen days. On their release from jail, a meeting was arranged at Kanthi to give them hero’s reception.Birendranath, who was requested to be present at the meeting, underwent to attend it. The meeting, at Saraswatitala of Kanthi was packed to the limit. People from balconies, from tree-tops and from the ground rent the sky with shouts, slogans and songs. All the local Congress leaders were present. The men were garlanded and honoured.

Another instance.

Towards the end of August in 1921, an Anglo-Indian Circle Officer {an old equivalent of modern B.D.O.)was going east ward of Kanthi on the purpose of collecting taxes. He came to house of an Honorary Magistrate,Chandramohon Agasti,at Hazratpur and asked for a horse. The groom( the servant in-charge of the horse’s)pretended to feel an urgent call of nature and hurried off. The circle officer himself entered the stable, took out a horse and rode towards Mirzapur.As he was about to enter Ghosepur villege,some Congress Volunteers who had been keeping watch on the officer reported to the villagers on the officer’s visit. Instantly conchs were blown,and,by some prearrangement, the village people-men and women came out of their house’s keeping the doors wide open. They all gathered in front of the temple of goddess ‘Sitala’lustily started singing prayers to God in the accompaniment of proper musical instruments, paying no heed to the officer or his activity. The angry officer ordered the Chowkidars (the village guards) accompanying him to bring out the articles of movable property he whipped them and then cajoled them but to no effect. They put off their uniforms and left the place, leaving the officer forlorn and puzzled.

Repealing the Act.

At last by January next year, the Government had to repeal the Act and abolish all the 227 Union Boards formed in Medinipur district.

Evaluation of the movement.

Birendranath called this movement a stray one, having no-connection with the non-co-operation movement, perhaps because he did not like to embarrass, some leaders of the Congress.However, many, historians prefer to call this ‘No-Tax’ movement a part of the non-co-operation movement.Subhas Chandra, in his book’ Indian Struggle’, remarked-“The success of the No-Tax campaign gained considerable strength and self-confidence to the people of Midnapur and popularity to their leader Mr.B.N.Sasmal.

Civil Disobedience Movement / Violation of Salt Law (First Phase – From 6th April, 1930 to 4th March, 1931.

Dandi March.

The Working Committee of Congress in its sitting at Allahabad on 15th February adopted the resolution of Civil Disobedience. And to demonstrate disobedience, it was decided that the Salt Law, that gave the British the Exclusive right to produce Salt in India, would be defied by producing salt at Dandi and elsewhere.Accordingly, 61 old Gandhiji, with 78 followers from different parts of the country, set out on foot from Sabarmati on 12th March, and covering the distance of 241 miles in 21 days, reached the coastal place at Dandi and produced a handful of salt on 6th April. This seemingly simple and trifle action snow-balled into a movement of gigantic proportion and rocked the British Government in India.

Bengal’s Dandi.

In Bengal,Kanthi with its surroundings including Pitchhaboni was selected, after careful consideration, as the Bengal equivalent of Dandi.The coastal area being suitable for producing salt, the sprit of sacrifice and unity already demonstrated in different movements, confidence of local people in Congress Leadership shown earlier and the success of the No-Tax movement argued strongly in favour of its selection. If representatives from different parts of India took part in Dandi-March, people from different parts of Bengal, from Dhaka to Kumilla, Bankura to Hoogly, Bardhaman to Nadia, assembled at Kanthi to carry on their non-violent crusade of violating Salt-Law. For ten months, as if, all roads of Bengal had led to Kanthi.

Pitchhaboni.

Pitchhaboni, a village, seven miles from Kanthi, was selected to be the center for producing salt. To the west of the road running from Kanthi to Digha, on the bank of the Pitchhaboni stream and under a banyan tree, a spot was – out for the salt-field. On 6th April, the volunteers (called ‘Satyagrahees’)from Kumilla who had reached Kanthi under the leadership of Suresh Chandra Das left on foot for the salt center at Pitchhaboni.In the Contai camp they had been well-tutored about their duty, about their ideal of not taking recourse to violence in spite of provocation of any sort. All the way from Kanthi to Pitchhaboni the road was lined on both sides by people who greeted the volunteers by garlanding them, showering flowers over them, putting ‘Chandan’marks on their foreheads, by shouting victory-slogans in the name of their leaders and blowing conchs.

 

1st Day.

On reaching the spot, the volunteers engaged themselves in the process of producing salt from the salty soil by the river side. From a little distance, hundreds of people were observing the operation. The Magistrate of Midnapur, Mr.Peddy, Excise Superintendent Mr. Hoskinse, District Police Superintendent Mr.Keed and the A.S.P.of Kanthi who in a few days would earn a rare notoriety for his torture-practice were keeping watch on the whole affair. Although on the previous day the police had tried to keep the local people off the area by creating panic, on 6th April they took no action. In the afternoon, a meeting, presided over by Jhareswar Majhi, an inhabitant of the adjacent village Rasulpur and the Headmaster of Gopalpur Primary School, was held at the Pitchhaboni market.

2nd Day (7th April).

On the second day also, the police behaved almost like idle spectators as the volunteers kept on normal process of producing salt. Only when the ‘Satyagrahees’,after calling it a day, were going back to their camp, the A.S.P.Mr.Samsuddin snatched the salt-packet from the hand of Dr.Suresh Bandopadhyay,the leader of Kumilla.

3rd Day.

On the third day, 8th April, the character of colonial police began to reveal itself. When the volunteers went to their camp at noon for lunch & rest, the policeman broke the earthen pots and destroyed the pit dug by them. The Magistrate Pedy himself in anger, kncked down the volunteer bearing the flag-and kicked him. In the afternoon meeting attended by many local people, the police charged them with their staff in a bid to disperse them.

From 4th Day on word Coercive methods.

As the movement rolled on further, the police force started baring its fangs. They used force to coerce the Satyagrhees, to terrorise people and let loose the dogs of barbarity. The police messed up the salt-fields, broke the pots, caned the volunteers, tore up their clothes, and dipped them in salt –water. They set fire to the house of Jhareswar Majhi, the local leader, and made him sit near to watch the house on fire and the footstock and other belongings destroyed. They confiscated Jhareswar’s bullocks and cows, took them to Kanthi for the purpose of selling them on quotation. The modesty of women volunteers was outraged.

Arrest of Leaders.

The leaders arrested on 11th April were Dr. Suresh Chandra Bandhopadhyay, Jhareswar Majhi and Surendra Nath Das.On the same day.Gobinda Ghorui and Radhamohon Ghorui, both from hatiberia; Bholanath Das, Kalachand Jana, Gokul Mondal and Bankim Sur were also arrested. To prominent leaders, Dr. Prafulla Chandra Ghosh who later became the Chief Minister of West Bengal for some time and the Pramathanath Bandopadhyay, a Kanthi stalwart, were arrested. The arrested persons would have to undergo a summary trial in the Camp-Court set near by for the special purpose, and the Magistrate Mr. Gafur was to pass an imprisonment-sentence with a fine. As there was neither a defense council nor did the volunteers deny the charge, the job of the mock-trial, so to say, was easy, and as there was no question of paying the fine, the prison term would always be increased by a few months. On many occasions, the volunteers were arrested, sprited away to some distance and then released.

Pitchhaboni.

However, the Satyagrahees and the people at large, instead of being cowered, became all the more tenacious and adament.The name of the village Pitchhaboni that in local dialect meant ‘Won’t retreat’ became the slogan of the volunteers-“We won’t retreted”.The salt-fields went on working. In absence of Dr. Suresh Chandra Bandopadhyay, the leadership was passed on to Nibaran Chandra Dey, a 6th –year medical student. New salt centers came up at places like Teghari, Gopalpur, and Thakurchauk.At least one hundred volunteers were always ready on tip –toe at Kanthi headquarters in order to replace the arrested or wounded ones. And the volunteers were never in short supply for young men and women lied with one another for the position of honour.

Other salt-centres in Kanthi Sub-Division.

In Kanthi Sub-division, fifty six main salt –centres were organized. Most remarkable of them.

In Khejuri police station-Ajaya,Tikashi,Heria,Vikramnagar,Mowhati,Kulatha,Kamarda,Jahanabad,Kunjapur,Pakhai,Ajanbari,Gopichauk.

Ramnagar Police Station.

 

Teghari,Sanpua,Gholey,Bhuniajibard,Baro-mile –ghat,Choulkhola,Satbetia,Mania,Dera,Belbaria,Narandia etc.

Pataspur Police Station.

 

Pratapdighi, Katranka, Uttar Raibandh, Balyagovindapur, Bhuban, Bhairabdanri, Brajaballavpore, Gopalbandh, Madanmohonpur.

Egra Police Station.

 

Balighai, Dowdpur, Keuteigara, Chowmukh, Asthichauk.

Bhagawanpur Police Station.

 

Ektarpur,Bayenda,Bibhisanpur,Paschimbard,Mahammadpur,Pykebherdi,Shilakhali,Gopinathpur,Kalaberia,Dumurdanri,Jukhia etc.

Some other Centres and Police Barbarism.

There were many more centers like Mirjapur ( Six miles from Kanthi) Kalinagar,Balia,Daha-Sonamui,Rupnagar that should also be mentioned. In many of them, women volunteers worked shoulder to shoulder with menthe center at Seulikhali on the bank of the Keleyghai river was organized by a women leader,Dhiren Bala Das.This was a center run by woman volunteers, who in spite of frequent police-raids, kept it running. Special mention should be made of Choulkhola (Five miles from Kanthi)where about 50 to 60 women volunteers worked with male ones. On 7th May (1930),while the women volunteers, all aged between forty five and seventy year of age were at work, the police pounced upon them, kicked, boxed and caned them, and even tore their clothes. One of them, Padma-devi by name and a milk-woman by profession, badly mauled by some beast in police uniform.

 

People’s Reaction:-

Police tortured gradually surpassed limits number of arrested persons swelled up. Most of the were released after a few hours detention. Those who were detained could not be accommodated in police look-up and a Govt. godown had to be requisitioned for the purpose. Kanthi – jail was packed beyond the capacity. The entire cell, the movement didn’t lose vehemence by a job or title, on the contrary, it extended its area and its intensity increased.

 

End of the First Phase:-

With the one set of rains, the Salt-Law-Disobedience Movement had to be withdrawn. Most of the local people were farmers and cultivation of land was the main means of living. Moreover, the Salt-fields were inundated and the operation was impossible to carry on at most of the centers. However, the movement didn’t die out all together; it only changed its course. The new course of movement to adopt was stopping paying Chowkidari Tax.

 

Persons undergoing Prison Term:-

Although the prison-term was by no means the worst sort of suffering that people underwent, the names of imprisoned Satyagrahees that could be traced mainly from Swadhinata Sangrame Medinipur by Basanta Kumar Das (a participant of the movement having first hand experience …….) are recorded here for most of them were front runners and deserve mentioning.

 

Date 11th April:-

 

Dr. Suresh Chandra Bandapadhyay - 2 years 6 months

Surendra Nath Das -  2 years 6 months

Jhareswar Majhi - 2 years 6 months

Gobinda Prasad Ghorui (Hatiberia) - 2 years 3 months

Radhamohan Ghorui (Hatiberia) -  2 years 3 months

Bholanath Das - 2 years 3 months

Kalachand Jana -  2 years 3 months

Gokul Mandal (70 years old)  - 2 years 6 months

Bankim Sur - 2 years 3 months

 

13th April:-

Mihirbabu - 1 year 6 months + 3 months

14th April:

Basanta Kumar Das  - 1 year 3 months

Troilakayanath Pradhan - 1 year 3 months

Amulya Kumar Singha (Sweet-meat shop owner) - 1 year

20th April:-

 

Nanigopal Guha Ray  - Unknown

Dinesh Chandra Lodh -  Unknown

Adhir Chandra Banerjee -  Unknown

Nibaran Chandra Dey Sarkar - Unknown

Bhupendranath Basu -  Unknown

22th April:-

 

Kabiraj Raghunath Maity (Kanthi) - 4 months

24th April:-

Satish Chandra Jana - 6 months + 1 and ½ months

25th April:-

Bhuteswar Poira (teacher of Kanthi National School) -  1 year + 3 months

Gourhari Some (Kalinagar) -  6 months + 3 months

Nikunja Bihari Maity -  1 year + 3 months

Basanta Bidyalankar - 1 year + 3 months

 

27th April:

Bipin Bihari Adhikari -  1 year + 3 months

Iswar Chandra Mal  - 1 year + 3 months

Bijoy Krishna Maity -  1 year + 3 months

 

8th May:-

Haripada Chattopadhaya -  6 months

Gurupada Mukhopadhaya -  6 months

25th May:-

Prafulla Kumar Das (Mirzapur) -  2 years + 6 months

29th May:-

Pratap Chandra Manna - 6 months 

Nilkantha Giri  - 6 months

Nandalal Sou - 6 months

Gokul Chandra Khanra - 6 months

Sudhirnath Sou -  6 months

(with 32 volunteers from Bankura and

Burdwan and 1 from Singbhum) 6 months

 

June:-

Kangal Chandra Giri - 6 months

Haripada pahari - 6 months

Prafulla Chandra Bar (Pitchhaboni) - 2 months 

Sarbeswar Babu (Ektarpur) - 4 months

Nityagopal Maity (Student) -  6 months

Rakhal Chandra Maity -  1 year

Suresh Chandra Das  - 1 year

Jogesh Mahapatra - 1 year

 

Firing Incidents:-

There were a few incidents in which the police open fire. In two such incidents there was heavy casualty.

1st June 1930:-

Pratapdighi (In Pataspur Police Station)

Ramkrishna Das ( Bagmari Village), 25 years old died on the spot.

Kartik Chandra Mishra (Srirampur), 17 years old died on the spot.

Upendra Mishra (Died from bullet-wound, one week after)

 

6th June 1930:-

Narandia in Ramnagar Police Station

Bipraprasad Bera (Ranakua), died from bullet-wound on 12th June in Hospital

 

Those who were seriously wounded:

Prasanna Tala (Narandia)

Rajanikanta Das Mahapatra (Narandia)

Netramohan Maity (Badalpur)

Madan Kar (Chahaka)

Jhantu Charan Jana (Shatilapur)

Gour Hari Pramanik (Shatilapur)

Krishna Prasad Jana (Shatilapur)

 

National Leaders Appreciation:-

In appreciation of people’s suffering, sacrifice and stamina, Gandhiji and Neheru, on released from jail wrote letters, greetings to the people of Medinipur district. The letters are quoted here for the people of Kanthi Sub-Division deserve a fair share of the reorganization.

The letter of Gandhiji dated 02/02/1931. The body of the letter is as follows-

I have made myself acquainted with your condition to the extend it was possible without a local visit. I tender my congratulation for your courage and patience with which you have born your sufferings. Out of such sufferings will form a nation pulsating with life. Earthly possessions are no compensation for loss of liberty. It is matter of joy that you have preferred deprivation to of those to that of your liberty. I hope that you will not neglect the duty of manufacturing salt.

 

The body of Jaharlal Nehru’s Letter

Among the many place which I have provided martyrs for the India Freedom Midnapur District occupies an honourable position. It was fitting that special mention be made of it in the resolution of remembrance passed on the anniversary of Independence Day. I should like to tender my respectful congratulation to the brave men and women of the district who have suffered so much for the cause. Freedom will come to us – of that there is no doubt and when the dust of the struggle subsides we may forget many of little episodes connected with it. But we can never forget the signing examples of heroism and sacrifice of Indian’s and specially Indian’s women and we can not forget that has happened in Midnapur District.

 

Protest – Movement against Medinipur Partition (1931-1932).


The Gandhiji – Irwin Pact,signed on 04.03.’31,brought on a recess to the Civil Disobedience movement.During this period a remarkable incident happened in Kanthi Sub-division resulting in a naw spate of movement.

Proposal for a Partition of Medinipur.
Orissa leaders had been claiming for it to be a province in itself separated from Bihar.At the same time,they claimed for the incorporation of the parts of Medinipur,adjacent to Orissa,including Kanthi Sub-division.The Government built a committee to consider the proposal and asked it to give a report on its viability.


Kanthi’s (Contai’s)Protest.
Under the undisputable leadership of Birendranath Sasmal,the people of Kanthi,to a man,rose up against the proposal.On 4th July,1931,a huge protest meeting was organized at Kanthi.The veteran lawyerBiswanath Maity presided over the meeting, and the stalwarts like Roy Saheb Bipin Bihari Maity strongly argued against the annexation of Kanthi Sub-division to Orissa.Unanimously it was resolved that the proposal of Partition should not be accepted because-

i) “The mother- tounge of Kanthi-people was Bengali,not Oriya;
ii) The customs and manners of people here were more a kin to those of the Bengalees then those of the Oriyas;
iii) The politics in Kanthi has no affinity with that in Orissa;
iv) The languase taught traditionally in the primary School’s of the Sub-division was Bengali,not Oriya;
v) In Sub-divisional Law- Courts,Bengali was used in records and wills;
vi) Descendants of Utkal emigrants,mainly the Karans and Brahmins,were but numbered;
vii) People possessing owenership of land by Bengal Land-Laws would not relinquish right in altered situation;
viii) Kanthi – inhabitants would,by no means,like to be deprived of the influence of the rich and world –standard Bengali Literature;
ix) They were also unwilling to forsake and advantages of Bengal’s Universities,Technical and Law-Colleges and other educational institutions;
x) In spite of sympathy for Orissa’s claim for a separate province,the Kanthi people were against its segregation from Medinipur.


Anti- Segregation Committee.
An anti-segrigation committee was formed with the Uncrowned King,Birendranath Sasmal as its President and Jiban Krishna Maity its Vice- Precident.Troilokya Nath Pradhan was the secretary was the committee,while its other members were Roy Saheb Bipin Bihari Sasmal,Biswanath Maity,Murari Mohan Roy,Sarat Chandra Pattanayak,Hemchandra Kar,Bipin Behari Adhikari,Surendra Nath Das,Sashi Bhusan Maity,Bijoy Krishna Maity,Rakhal Chandra Maity,Iswar Chandra Mal and some others.The Committee organized meetings which were attended by thousand of people.The protest movement grew stronger and stronger.

Birendranath.
Birendranath moved like a hurricane from one meeting to another,in Dantan,Gopiballavpur or Nayagram.With his argumentative skill,he refuted all the arguments put forward by Orissa-Leaders in favour of annexation of the southern part of Medinipur to Orissa,and showed their invalidity.His essays,published in ‘Advanced’magazine of Kolkota,which were later brought out as a booklet’Midnapur Partition’,pointing out that the political struggle of Kanthi people in the recent past like the Salt-Law-Violation,Non-Co-operation and Boycott Union Movements or their sufferings as a sequel of those Movements created no responding feeling or activity in Orissa.Birendranath wired to Gandhiji,then in London,requsting him to this approved of the Government move in this respect.He also wrote to the British Prime Minister insisting on listening to the voice of Kanthi people before taking any decision on Partition.
Birendranath declared that if Medinipur were dissected it would be done over his dead body.The words might remined one of the same kind oath uttered by Gandhiji before the partition of India.India was partitioned.Gandhiji died spiritually before partition,and physically immediately afterit.Thank God,in case of Birendranath it did not happen.Good sense prevailed upon the Government.They formed another Committee to Consider the pros and cons of the proposal.The committee after hearing the evidence given by many men of repute recommended against it and the Government withdrew the proposal.


Armed Struggle in Kanthi (Contai) Sub-division.

Background of Armed Struggle.
It is true that the movement in Kanthi Sub-division was mainly non-violent,that the indisputable leader of the area Birendranath Sasmal had an unswerving faith in Gandhiji’s doctrine of non-violence,that generally the people of the locality were god-fearing and lent themselves to peaceful means of resistance in spite of provocation.However,it was impossible for people,particularly young generation,to remain immune from the influence of the first martyr of Medinipur,Kshudiram, and of the activites of two seceret organizations of Bengal,’Bengal Volunteers’ and ‘Anusilan Samity’.Besides,there were some leaders who hated taking lying down the barbarity practised upon people by the administration.Therefore,preparation for armed struggle,for taking retaliatory action against some men in administration went on in secret.

Bengal Volunteers at Kanthi(Contai).
In May of 1928,Haripada Bhowmik,a B.V.activist,was sent to Kanthi in order to organize a centre here.Haripada got admission to Kanthi (Contai ) High School and put up in the school hostel.Those who entered his fold first were Anil Kumar Maity,Jyotish Chandra Bera,Nabin Chandra Mahapatra,Asoke Kumar Roy, Kartik Chandra Maity,Ashutosh Maity and Nirmal Kumar Roy who later became a professor of the City College of Kolkata.Later Aswani Kumar Giri,Shyamapada Das,Tarapada Das,Amulya Kumar Dey and some others joined the team.After passing the Matric Examination in 1929,Haripada Bhowmik got admission to Prabhat Kumar College of Kanthi.Here the Professor of Bengali,Kshitish Chandra Dasgupta and the elder brother of Anil Kumar Maity,Nagengranath Maity,secretly assisted Mr. Bhowmik.Dinesh Gupta,a revolutionary activist from Dacca,lived for some time in secret in the house of the Maities (Anil Kumar and Nagendranath) at Dahagord.

Attempt to collct money by robbery.
Bhupal Chandra Panda and Santosh Kumar Bhattacharya,students of Prabhat Kumar Collge,also joined the B. V.In order to collect money,required for purchasing arms and and other revolutionary activities,they,along with Jyotish Bera,Kartk Maity,Sachin Mahapatra,Ashutosh Maity and Ramakanta Maity,made a plan of robbery.But their attempt failed and Bhupal was arrested in the charge of Violating Arms Act.He was sentenced to imprisonment for five years and sent to Andamans immediately.

Mr.Gafur & Mr.Samsuddoha.
The Sub-divisional Magistrate,Mr.Gafur,and the A.S.P.,Mr.Samsuddoha,who unleashed a reign of terror in the area occupied the first two places in the hit-list of the B.V.activists.For the purpose,two unidentified revolutionaries were brought from Kolkata.But getting the scent of the plan,the authority transferred Mr.Samsuddoha to Birbhum.Mr.Gafur too was transferred some time after.

Anusilan Samity at Bayenda.
Ramesh Chendra Acharya,a leader of Anusilan Samity,was for some time interned at Bayenda in Bhupatinagar police station.Naturally a branch of the Samity was established there and Sarat Chandra Maity was the chief activist of the centre.

Different Courses of movement and people.

In fact ,different courses of movement,by the violent or non-violent,were never water- tight or stream-lined.People following different courses had sympathy for one another,came to the help of one another,and changed courses if situation demanded.For instance,Pramatha Nath Bandopadhyay, a top ranking Congress leader of the area later joined the Forward Block and engaged himself in politics of violence that cost him his right hand.People,men or women,young or old or teen-agers,were ready to render whatever service their leaders called them upon to serve.

Civil Disobedience Movement (Second Stage) January to December (1932).

Temporary Lull Over.
When Gandhi-Irwin pact called a halt to the Civil Disobedience movement,everybody knew that the movement was only suspended,but was, by no means,over.So the workers and volunteers did not indulge in idleness.They engaged themselves in constructive work like spinning,making amicable settlements of dsisputes among people,getting rid of the curse of untouchability etc.In the meantime,Gandhiji attended the Round Table Conference,but it yieled nothing to Gandhiji or India.

Resumption of Civil Disobedience Movement.
Gandhiji returned to India on 28th December,1931.On 1st January,1932,Congress adopted the resolution of resuming the Civil Disobedience movement.and Kanthi (Contai) resumed the movement in earnest.By the 10th January,most of the top-ranking leaders of India were put behind the bars.Kanthi (Contai )launched a protest-movement against it.meetings,processions,picketings,and attempts to Sudhir Chandra Dashoist national flags on Government Buildings went on everywhere in the Sub-division,workers held secret meetings,set programmes and carried them out with resolution.

Independence Day observed.
On 26th January,the Independence Day was observed at Kanthi (Contai).A huge meeting was organished on the Darua ground near Kanthi (Contai) town.Dr.Prafulla Chandra Ghosh hoisted the National Flag and put people on oath,violating the 144 Cr. P.C. announced by the police.The people arrested Dr. Ghosh and 36 others who were followed by a large procession to the police station.The staff-wielding policemen had a tough time to disperse the people.Out of the arrested persons twenty nine were released.Among those who were sent to the dock there were the President of Sub-divisional Congress,Nikunja Behari Maity,the Secretary, Dr. Rasbihari Pal,the Dictator of Kanthi Police Station, Sudhir Chandra Das.

Observance of Independence Day at other places.
The Independence Day was observed in every police station.At Egra,the Dictator Narendranath Maity was arrested,while putting people on oath.The day was also observed at Panchrole,Paniparul and Baro-Nalgeria.

Pataspur.

Those who were arrested in Pataspur Police Station were Kalipada Roy Mahapatra,Shyamapada Bera,Debendranath Sasmal,Priyanath Bera and some others of whom Thrtee were sent for Trial.

Khejuri.Khejuri - India's First Post Office
At Ajanbari of Khejuri Police Station many of those who were observing the day were arrested by the police,though only three persons were detained for trial.They were Gopal Chandra Jana,Gobinda Prasad Hait and Phani Bhusan Gayen.

Ramnagar.
In Ramnagar Police Station,the Independence Day was observed at Panigraghi-hat,Patna Hat,Meergoda,Chowdhuri Hat,Sapua and at some other centres.

Bhagawanpur.
In Bhagawanpur PoliceStation observance came off at Paschimbard and Nazir-bazar.The leaders to court arrest were Dharanidhar Das, Rajanikanta Sen and the women leaders,Dhira Das and Kousalyamoyee Das.
In the whole Sub-division,sixty six persons,in all,were arrested but only fourteen of them were sent for trial.All of these fourteen were sentenced to imprisonment of different terms.Each of the Kanthi-Stalwarts-Nikunja Bihari Maity,Rasbihari Pal and Sudhir Chandra Das was sentenced to rigorous imprisonment for six months each.
4th February.
On 4th January ,1932,Gandhiji was arrested. 4th February was observed in remembrance of that incident.This time,according to the desire of Gandhiji,women were in action.Fifty women were arrested and out of them eleven were sent for trial.It happened in the morning.In the afternoon,thirty women with twelve men courted arrest.
Thus throughout the year,through the observance of many occasions,the protest movement was carried on in the whole Sub-division.The following account may give a picture of the activities.
i) Hartal (Strike)-28.
ii) Public Meeting – 951.
iii) Group Meeting – 973.
iv) Procession-877
v) Flag Satyagraha at 258 centres,250 times.
vi) Picketing for boycotting foreign goods in front of 400 shops
vii) Picketing before excise counters-14 (Mainly by women volunteers).
viii) Picketing in front of post offices before 34 post offices;more than a hundred times a week.
ix) No-Tax Movement-Out of 2113 villages,1900 villages refused to pay tax.
x) Conference
i) Sub-divisional Conference –one.
ii) P.S.Conference –15
iii) Delegates attending them Men-700 and Women 200
xi) Wounded in lathi-charge –Men & Women –350
xii) Arrested-21.
xiii) Sentenced-16

Case of Police Firing.
Special mention should be made of Masuria inBhagawanpur police station where the police opened fire,killing five persons.On 04.07.1932,a meeting was arranged,at Masuria to observe the “Rajbandi Dibas”.The meeting was attended by more than a thousand people.The police tried to disperse people by charging them with their staff.In the process when a few women were wounded,people got agitated and a few brick-bats were hurled at the police.The police officer Nirad Dutta ordered firing.A boy of Patchuhari village,the only son of a widow,Chand Samanta by name,died on the spot.A bride-groom,married the night before,was standing at the door of his father-in-law’s house in front of the meeting place.He was shot at the head and died instantly.At this horrible sight,a 75 year old man,Kamdeb Pradhan of Uluberia village,was shocked. Wearing a loin-cloth and the upper part of his body draped over with a towel,he confronted the police party,bared his chest and asked them loudly to quench their monstrous blood - thirst with his blood.The police officer, being startled and perhaps losing head,fired at the old man from his revolver.

A symbolic incident not to forget.

While turning tail,the panic-striken police personnel fired at random.Abhoy Mondal of Bibhisanpur was struck by one stray bullet and died on spot.A teen-ager,Ramnath Maity of Kisorepur village,was seriously wounded and he succumbed to the wound a month after.When the police left the spot,some women workers,finding the old man Kamdeb Pradhan still alive,tried to take him to Kanthi (Contai )town.On the way they were accosted by the Sub-divisional Magistrate who was going somewhere in car that way.Seeing the condition of the old man,the Magistrate tried to take his dying statement.On being asked if he had any last wish to express,the old man looked up to the sky and muttered in a choked voice “Swaraj” (Freedom),and breathed his last.This was the singular desire, nearest and dearest, not only to the heart of the old man but to hearts of all Kanthi people at the time.
[ From the book ‘Swadhinata Sangramei Bhagawanpur Thana’ by Dhirendranath Das,as Quoted by Basanta Kumar Das in his Swadhinata Sangramei Medinipur]

Bulletins.
Newspapers were under the thumb of an ordinance and always under the scanner of the administration.Therefore,the bulletins,published secretely,played the role of free newspapers and served as powerful sources of information and inspiration.Bulletins used to be brought out in every Sub-division.

‘Kanthi Congress Barta’.
(Click Here to view Kanthi Congress Barta Scanned Copy) Kanthi Congress Barta - Click here to view more
The bulletin that was brought out at Kanthi bore the title “Kanthi Congress Barta”. It would be printed with the help of a cyclostyle machine installed on the first floor of the two-storeyed building of Mr. Asutosh Singha,a well known pleader of Kanthi Court.The building was just a few yards from the police station and naturally escaped the suspicious attention of the police for long.Servants,hawkers,barbers or poters came to the house but nobody suspected that they were reporters or bulettin-vendors.One day,at last,on suspicion,the police raided the house,but the workers,with the machine,escaped jumping over the boundary wall.
Then the bulletin was for some time printed in the house of Kangal Chandra Jana at Athilagori.The house of Phanibhusan Bhunia at Darua was also used for a period of time for the work of publication.
The director of the whole affair was one of the chief activists,Sudhir Chandra Das,who in free India became a minister of the West Bengal Government.Others who worked for the bulletin in different capacities were Sripati Charan Panda of Bara –Bantalia,Purna Chandra Patra,Paramesh Chandra Chakrabarty,Jhareswar Pal,Pulin Behari Pal,Debendra Nath Maity,Chanchal Kumar Jana and the brothers of Ashutosh Singha,Mahitose,Bhabhatosh and Sontosh.Kedarnath Das,Surendranath Das,Surendranath Pal and Parameswar Maity also helped to bring out the bulletin. Bulletins were also brought out from Khejuri,Bhagwanpur,Pataspur and Ramnagar police stations.In every union [equivalent to modern Panchayet]there would be a man-in-charge who received bulletins from P.S.Centre for distribution and sent reports to the centre for publication.In market – places the bulletins were sold and read out to people.There were arrangements for sending abroad the important news-items.The Bulletins played a key role in organizing and controlling different movements in the area.

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