An Indian novelist, poet, essayist and journalist, Bankim Chandra Chatterjee (also known as Chattopadhyay) was a cie (26 or 27 June 1838 – 8 April 1894) journalist. Anandamath, a seminal work of modern Bengali and Indian literature, was written by him in the Bengali language in 1882.
As the youngest of three brothers in an orthodox Bengali Brahmin family, Chattopadhayay was born in the hamlet of Kanthalpara in the town of North 24 Parganas, Naihati, to Yadav Chandra Chattopadhayay and Durgadebi. His forefathers were from the Hooghly District hamlet of Deshmukho. His father, who worked for the government, later rose to the position of Deputy Collector in Midnapur. Sanjib Chandra Chattopadhyay, one of his brothers, was also an author and is well known for his work “Palamau.” At Hooghly Collegiate School (formerly Governmental Zilla School), where he composed his first poem, Bankim Chandra attended with his older brother. He received his education at the Hooghly Mohsin College and afterwards at Kolkata’s Presidency College, where he earned an arts degree in 1859.
He eventually enrolled in the University of Calcutta, where he was one of the first two students to graduate after passing the final test. In 1869, he went on to get a law degree. Bankimchandra joined the Subordinate Executive Service after his father. He was named a Jessore deputy magistrate in 1858, the same rank as his father. He continued on to become a deputy magistrate and deputy collector once the offices were merged in 1863, retiring from the government in 1891. He had several workplace mishaps throughout the years that put him in confrontation with the colonial authority. Nevertheless, in 1894 he was appointed a Companion of the Most Eminent Order of the Indian Empire (CMEOIE). In 1891, he was also given the title of Rai Bahadur.
Sangbad Prabhakar, a weekly magazine owned by Ishwar Chandra Gupta, published Chattopadhyay’s early works. He started out as a poet before switching to fiction writing. His first effort was a Bengali book that was submitted for an established award. He lost, and the novel was never made public. The English book Rajmohan’s Wife was his first piece of published literature. His first Bengali romance and first Bengali book were both released in 1865 under the name Durgeshnandini. His article “Shakuntala, Miranda Abong Desdemona” (1873) has been thoroughly analyzed at the School of Comparative Literature at Jadavpur University and is considered the first attempt at comparative study of several literatures in Bengali.
Bankim was heavily influenced by the historic Gaudiya Vaishnava cultural efflorescence of Bengal in the 14th and 15th centuries. Eight years after Chattopadhyay’s death, his commentary on the Bhagavad Gita was released, and it included his views up to the 19th Verse of Chapter 4. In a lengthy article on Sankhya philosophy, he makes the case that Sankhya philosophy forms the conceptual core of the vast majority of Indian religious beliefs, including even Buddhism. He was a critic of the theory because it placed more of a focus on individual vairagya (renunciation) than it did on social and political influence.