Friday, May 1, 2009


Here are the brief profiles of some of the outstanding Santal writers, poets and storyteller. As Songs and dance are part and parcel of Santal life, naturally, Santals inherited the poetry writing skills as the way they learn to speak and walk. This opens up plenty of poets among the Santals. Unfortunately majority of them remained unknown to outside world owing to non-publication of manuscripts. It is our effort to make them make acquainted with outside world and throw some light on their outstanding works.
Majhi Ramdas Tudu Rouska:
He hailed from Karuakata village of Ghatshila, Jharkhand. Before independence, he started his writing in form or other. It is only in 1894, he was able to publish the traditional nation of Santals in the book of Kherwal Bansha Dharam Puthi. He had been honored by Calcutta University by conferring the D. Litt for the literary contribution on Santali culture and literatures. In 1951 the edited version of this book published in Bengali srcript with introductory note of Dr. Sunithi Kr. Chatterjee, a great linguist and scholar. In this publication, the author has also incorporated his own drawing and sketches of the image of different deities.
Sadhu Ram Chand Murmu:
Born in traditional Santal village named Kamarbandi in the district of Midnapur, West Bengal. He devoted his full life for enriching the Santali literature in all spheres. In Santali literature, he is called MahaKabi, the great poet. When he started his writings, the surroundings were not conducive for creative literature, yet his determined efforts for the cause of Santali literatures made ultimately headway in enriching the Santali literatures.
He was the poet of his own class and in many sense, his poet was written in special style which are highly popular in the Santal dominated areas in Jharkhand, Orissa, West Bengal and Assam. The main theme of his poem was social reforms and he composed many poems by articulating the views of Social and cultural values and ethos. As he realized that literature and culture are the backbone of a community, therefore, enriching them was his high priority. So, he devoted his full life for Santali literature. Apart from the works on poetry, he wrote plays and essays. His writing of poetry gave special dimension and altogether new style in Santali poetry writings.
In his life time, none of his works was published, it is long after his death, Santal organization came forward and made efforts to publish his works. Some of his notable publication are Sari Dhorom Sereng Puthi ( Part I & II), Lita Goddet (Traditonal narration), Ol Daha Anrhe (poems) and Ishror.
Sarada Prasad Kisku:
He is an eminent poet in Santali. He is from Purulia district of West Bengal and since then his school days devoted in writing in Santali. His Bhurka Ipil is highly popular collection of poems. As a profession, he was a school teacher and he had been awarded numerous award for his works in poetry.
Shyam Sunder Hembrom:
He hails from Orissa and wrote many books. The notable among them are Chattarpati Kisku Rapaj (play) published on 1948 and Kherwal Akil Bati (Collection of songs) published on 1950. Many of his writings was in manuscript stage. In 1990, All India Santali Writers Association, honoured him for his contribution in Santali.
Thakur Prasad Murmu:
He hailed from Jharkhand and he published his first book on poems in 1947. It is learnt that by selling his books he managed to get into the college. He was regular contributor of Hor Sambad in various topics, poems and short stories. Notable among his publication was Santal Hul.
Gomasta Prasad Soren:
He is from Purulia district of West Bengal. He is basically a poet. However, his works did not confine to poetry only. He also had written many articles on Social reforms. His first publication was Akhara Thau published in 1965. His other notable works were Kahis Aarang (pathetic voice), Nonkan geyabon hor (We Santals are like this) and Nonkan getabon Samaj (Our society is like this).
Rabilal Majhi:
Rabilal Majhi is from West Bengal. He is also basically poet, however, he did write many short stories, plays and essays. He articles mostly focused on exploitation and oppression. For his literary contribution in Santali, he is awarded with Tetre award in 1991. His book of poems Anga Aarang was published on 1971.
Babulal Murmu Adibasi:
He is resident of Dumka, Jharkhand. He is one of well known Santali writer in present times. His poem collection Koyo Harre published in 1974. He is a also analytical writer on Santali language.
Bhagan Murmu:
He is from Orissa and particularly known for his works on songs. His notable works were Sari Sarna Sibil Sereng published in 1963 and Mane Achurena (change of mind) published in 1979.
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