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Ghanada

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Ghanada
Ghanada character
Poka GhanaDa story title page Ajit Gupta 1956.jpg
Ghanada (left)
First appearanceমশা (The Mosquito) (1945)
Last appearanceGhanada O Dui Doshor Mamababu O Parashar(1989)
Created byPremendra Mitra
Friend(s)
  • Shibu
  • Shishir
  • Gaur
  • Sudhir
  • Bipin
  • Bapi Datta
  • Ramsharan Babu
  • Shibapada Babu
  • Harisadhan Babu
  • Bhabataran Babu
AgeBetween 35 to 55
Residence"Messbari" at no. 72, Banamali Naskar Lane, Calcutta, West Bengal, India
Information
Full nameGhanashyam Das
NicknameGhana
GenderMale
OccupationStorytelling, Adventurer
RelativesBachanram Das, 16th generation; Ghanaram Das, 22nd generation
ReligionHindu
NationalityIndian

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Ghanashyam Das alias GhanaDa (Bengali: ঘনাদা), the protagonist of the GhanaDa series of science fiction novels written in Bengali is a fictional character created by Premendra Mitra in 1945. In the novels, the character fights evil and stands against international terrorism. The far-fetched stories take place in multiple international locations, and across a historical timeline.[1] He is depicted regularly outwitting his fellow boarders of the messbari at no. 72 Banamali Naskar Lane.[2] GhanaDa was a personification of Premendra Mitra's anti fascist humanistic ideologies and moral universe, and his stories were notably accurate from a historical, geographical and scientific standpoint[3][4][5]

First appearance[edit]

GhanaDa's first appearance was in a story titled মশা (The Mosquito), published in the Puja annual Alpana (Bengali: আলপনা) in 1945 published by Deb Sahitya Kutir, Kolkata, West Bengal, India.[6]

GhanaDa was engaged by a company in Sakhalin to collect amber sometime during 1939, and in due course he landed up to a scientific laboratory set by Mr. Nishimara, an entomologist, in search of a Chinese laborer who went missing. It was later revealed that Mr. Nishamara was genetically converting the mosquitos into deadly agents of biological warfare. When the lone genetically engineered mosquito landed of the face of Mr. Nishimara and sealed his fate by stinging him, GhanaDa slapped Nishmara to kill the mosquito and eliminated a severe threat towards humanity. He declared he never intended to kill another mosquito ever after in his lifetime.[7]

মশা মারবার পরিশ্রমেই যেন হাঁপিয়ে একটা দীর্ঘশ্বাস ছেড়ে ঘনাদা বললেন, "জীবনে তারপর মশা মারতে আর প্রবৃত্তি হয়নি"[7]

Characterization[edit]

GhanaDa[edit]

The character of Ghanashyam Das alias GhanaDa was outlined as a bachelor, dark complexioned male with tall, boney and skeletal structure, having age “anywhere between thirty five to fifty five”, as described by the author himself in Mosha, the first story of the Ghanada series. He stayed in the third floor attic of a shared apartment called "Messbari" (মেস বাড়ি) at no. 72, Banamali Naskar Lane, Calcutta, West Bengal, India, along with other boarders, who called him GhanaDa, while Ghana is the shortened form of his name Ghanasyam, and the term “da” is a suffix added to the name of an elder male in Bengal to convey reverence and affection. Though he was rarely found engaged in any activity or work other than telling fantastic tales to the boarders of the apartment, sitting in his arm chair and cadging cigarette from his fellow boarder, his tall tales engaged him with most of the major events happened in the world for last two hundred years and there was no place on earth which he didn't visit.[8]

গত দুশো বছর ধরে পৃথিবীর হেন জায়গা নেই যেখানে তিনি যাননি, হেন ঘটনা ঘটেনি যার সঙ্গে তাঁর কোনও যোগ নেই[8]

Premendra Mitra, the creator, described GhanaDa in an interview by A K Ganguly published in SPAN in 1974, as under:[9]

Ghana~da is a teller of tall tales, but the tales always have a scientific basis. I try to keep them as factually correct and as authentic as possible.[9]

How and why did GhanaDa arrive at no. 72 Banamali Naskar Lane?[edit]

After forty years of publication of the first GhanaDa story, the author revealed the circumstances how GhanaDa appeared for the first time in the no.72 Banamali Naskar Lane Mesbari, in the story GhanaDa Elen, written in 1985 at the request of the fans of GhanaDa.

It was the early days of this messbari many years ago, when the four friends just occupied this house and were trying to settle down, a strange person, whose age could be anywhere between thirty and sixty, with a thin and lanky structure like an axe having a deep barytone voice and carrying a small cambis bag, approached them for help. He needed an accommodation to get a confirmed postal address because seven years ago he, while working as an expert in guns, promised Bob Kenneth, a licensed hunter in Uganda, that if his help is needed Bob should put an advertisement in the London Times with a symbol of Jerboa. After watching for last seven years at last he saw the advertisement in the London Times in the Imperial Library of Calcutta while spending a few days in the city. He sent a letter to Bob asking for details in reply to the advertisement letting him know this house at no 72. Banamali Naskar Lane as his own address. Now he should wait here only for a day or two till the reply comes from Bob. He himself had chosen a dilapidated roof top attic in the second floor and assured that he could manage a broken bed, just for a few days. The young four friends eagerly agreed to extend all help to this distressed man, only in lieu of listening from him the story behind this matter, and asked him to stay as long as the reply reaches him. The strange man settled in the attic with his cambis bag. The cambis bag had long gone but the reply from Bob Kenneth never reached in all these years. The man in distress, GhanaDa, the fantastic teller of incredible tall tales, was still there.[10]

Other characters[edit]

The stories are broadly classified into two varieties:

  • Science based stories
  • History based stories
Science based stories

The Science-based stories were generally told in the common room of no. 72 Banamali Naskar Lane in front of the charmed boarders consisted of four permanent young men - Shibu, Shishir, Gaur and Sudhir, with some other members who appeared occasionally.

The character of GhanaDa is believed to be based on Sri Bimal Ghosh, an acquaintance of Premendra Mitra whom he used to call "TenDa". He was a co-boarder during Mitra's stay in a shared apartment house at Gobinda Ghoshal Lane of Bhabanipur in his early years. Other four main characters were also believed to be based on real persons.[8]

  • Shibu was Shibram Chakraborty, the writer
  • Shishir was Sisir Mitra, producer and actor in Bengali movies, co-founder of Basumati Chitra Pratisthan
  • Gaur was Gauranga Prasad Basu, co-founder of Basumati Chitra Pratisthan
  • Sudhir was the author of the stories of GhanaDa in first person, and it was the nickname of Premendra Mitra himself.
  • Bipin appeared only in মশা ( Mosha - The Mosquito).
  • Bapi Datta appeared in HNas and Suto, and so on.

There were two very important and essential characters without whom the GhanaDa stories would have been incomplete. They were Banoary, the cook, and Rambhuj, the attendant. Some other staff of the mess were also mentioned in various stories from time to time, such as Uddab, the water provider and Lachhmania, the cleaner.

History based stories

The history based stories were told in a completely different environment and the audience were also different. Almost every evening five persons, or at least four out of them, used to gather at a seating arrangement around a tree in Rabindra Sarobar by the side of a lake and discuss various matters ranging from healsth, imperialism, market rate to Vedanta philosophy etc. These five men were -

  • Ramsharan Babu, whose stomach was as flaby as a pot (রামশরণবাবু, যার উদর কুম্ভের মত স্ফীত)
  • Shibapada Babu, a retired professor of History, whose head was as smooth as marble (শিবপদবাবু, যার মস্তক মর্মরের মত মসৃণ)
  • Harisadhan Babu, whose hair was as white as Saccharum spontaneum (হরিসাধনবাবু, যার শিরশোভা কাশের মত শুভ্র)
  • Bhabataran Babu, who was as obese as an elephant (ভবতারনবাবু, মেদভারে যিনি হস্তির মত বিপুল)
  • and Ghanashyam Babu (Ghanada), who was as slender and disproportionate as a camel. (ঘনশ্যামবাবু, যিনি উস্ট্রের মত শীর্ণ ও সামঞ্জস্যহীন)

Collection[edit]

List of short stories[edit]

  • 1945 মশা ( Mosha - The Mosquito)
  • 1947 নুড়ি (Nuri - The Pebble)
  • 1948 ঘড়ি (Ghori - The Clock)
  • 1948 পোকা (Poka - The Insect)
  • 1949 মাছ (Machh - The Fish)
  • 1949 ছড়ি (Chhori - The Stick)
  • 1950 Robinson Crusoe Meye Chhilen (Robinson Crusoe was a Lady)
  • 1952 টুপি (Tupi - The Cap)
  • 1952 লাট্টু (Lattu - The Top)
  • 1953 দাদা Dada - Brother
  • 1954 ফুটো (PhNuto - The Hole)
  • 1955 দাঁত DNat - The Tooth
  • 1957 হাঁস HNas - The Duck
  • 1958 সুতো Suto - The Thread
  • 1959 শিশি (Shishi The Phial)
  • 1960 ঢিল (Dhil - The Stone)
  • 1961 কেঁচো (KNecho - The Warm)
  • 1962 ছাতা (Chhata - The Umbrella)
  • 1963 ছুঁচ (SNuch - The Needle)
  • 1963 মাছি (Machhi - The Fly)
  • 1964 ঘনাদাকে ভোট দিন (Vote for GhanaDa)
  • 1964 ঘনাদা কুলফি খান না (GhanaDa doesn't eat ice cream/Kulpi)
  • 1964 জল (Jol - Water)
  • 1965 চোখ (Chokh - The Eyes)
  • 1966 ভাষা (Bhasha - Language)
  • 1967 তেল (Tel - Oil)
  • 1968 মাটি (Mati - Soil)
  • 1968 ধুলো (Dhulo - Dust)
  • 1969 মাপ (Maap - Measure)
  • 1969 কাদা (Kada - Mud)
  • 1969 নাচ (Naach - Dance)
  • 1970 মুলো (Mulo - Radish)
  • 1970 টল (Tol - Like Water)
  • 1970 ঘনাদার ধনুর্ভঙ্গ (GhanaDa’r dhonurbgango)
  • 1971 কাঁটা (KNata - Thorn)
  • 1972 ভেলা (Vela - The Raft)
  • 1973 বেড়াজালে ঘনাদা (Berajaale GhanaDa - )
  • 1973 পৃথিবী বাড়লো না কেন (Prithibi barlo na keno)
  • 1974 গান (Gaan - The Song)
  • 1974 শান্তি পর্বে ঘনাদা (Shanti porbe GhanaDa)
  • 1975 কীচক বধে ঘনাদা (Keecah bodhe GhanaDa)
  • 1975 ভারত যুদ্ধে পিঁপড়ে (Bharat judhhe pNipre)
  • 1975 গুল-ই-ঘনাদা (Gul-e GhanaDa)
  • 1975 তিমি তারণ ঘনাদা (Timi taran GhanaDa)
  • 1976 খাণ্ডব দাহে ঘনাদা (Khandob Daahe GhanaDa)
  • 1977 কুরুক্ষেত্রে ঘনাদা (Kurukshetre GhanaDa)
  • 1978 ঘনাদার ফুঁ (GhanaDa’r phnoo)
  • 1980 জয়দ্রথ বধে ঘনাদা (Jayadrath bodhe GhanaDa)
  • 1982 ঘনাদার চিঠিপত্র ও মৌ-কা-সা-বি-স (GhanaDa’r chithipatro o Mau-Ka-Sha-Bi-Sh)
  • 1982 পরাশরে ঘনাদায় (Parashare GhanaDa)
  • 1983 মৌ-কা-সা-বি-স ও ঘনাদা (Mau-Ka-Sha-Bi-Sh o GhanaDa)
  • 1983 মৌ-কা-সা-বি-স থেকে রসোমালাই (Mau-Ka-Sha-Bi-Sh theke rasomalay)
  • 1983 ঘনাদার শল্য সমাচার (GhanaDa’r shalyo samachar)
  • 1983 আঠারো নয় উনিশ (Atharo noy unish)
  • 1984 মৌ-কা-সা-বি-স - একবচন না বহুবচন (Mau-Ka-Sha-Bi-Sh ekbachon na bahubachon)
  • 1984 ঘনাদা ফিরলেন (GhanaDa phirlen)
  • 1985 ঘনাদার বাঘ (GhanaDa’r bagh)
  • 1985 ঘনাদা এলেন (GhanaDa elen)
  • 1985 কালো ফুটো সাদা ফুটো (Kalo phuto sada phuno)
  • 1986 হ্যালি-র বেচাল (Halley’r bechaal)
  • 1986 ঘনাদার চিংড়ি বৃত্তান্ত (GhanaDa’r chingri brittanto)
  • 1987 মৌ-কা-সা-বি-স বনাম ঘনাদা (Mau-Ka-Sha-Bi-Sh bonam GhanaDa)

List of novels[edit]

  • 1966 আগ্রা যখন টলমল (Agra jakhon talomol)
  • 1967 দাস হলেন ঘনাদা (Das holen GhanaDa)
  • 1967 সূর্য কাঁদলে সোনা (Suryo kaNdle sona)
  • 1972 মঙ্গলগ্রহে ঘনাদা (Mongolgrohe GhanaDa)
  • 1978 তেল দেবেন ঘনাদা (Tel deben GhanaDa)
  • 1986 মান্ধাতার টোপ ও ঘনাদা (Mandhatar top O GhanaDa)

Incomplete novel[edit]

  • 1980 Mahabharote GhanaDa

Published Books and Compendiums[edit]

  • 1956 - Ghanadar Galpo by Premendra Mitra, Kolkata: Indian Associated Publishing Co. Private Ltd.
  • 1959 - Adwityo Ghanada by Premendra Mitra, Kolkata: Indian Associated Publishing Co. Private Ltd.
  • 1963 - Abar Ghanada by Premendra Mitra, Kolkata: Indian Associated Publishing Co. Private Ltd.
  • 1964 - Ghanadake Vote Din by Premendra Mitra, Kolkata: Indian Associated Publishing Co. Private Ltd.
  • 1966 - Ghanada Nityo Notun by Premendra Mitra, Kolkata: Indian Associated Publishing Co. Private Ltd.
  • 1968 - Agra Jakhon Talomawl by Premendra Mitra, Kolkata: Ananda Publishers Private Limited
  • 1969 - Shurjo Knadley Sona by Premendra Mitra, Kolkata: Gronthoprokash
  • 1970 - Ghanadar Juri Nei by Premendra Mitra, Kolkata: Shoibya Prakashan Bibhag
  • 1971 - Jnar Nam Ghanada by Premendra Mitra, Kolkata: Ananda Publishers Private Limited
  • 1973 - Mongolgrohey Ghanada by Premendra Mitra, Kolkata: Shoibya Pustakalay
  • 1975 - घनश्याम-दा by Premendra Mitra, Radhakrishna Prakashan.
  • 1976 - Duniyar Ghanada by Premendra Mitra, Kolkata: Deys Publishing
  • 1976 - Aphuronto Ghanada by Premendra Mitra, Kolkata: Saksharata Prakashan / Pashchimbanga Niraksharata Doorikaran Samiti
  • 1976 - घनश्याम-दा के और किससे by Premendra Mitra, Radhakrishna Prakashan.
  • 1978 - Ghanadar Phnu by Premendra Mitra, Kolkata: Ananda Publishers Private Limited
  • 1979 - Tel Deben Ghanada by Premendra Mitra, Kolkata: Ananda Publishers Private Limited
  • 1981 - Ghanada Bichitra by Premendra Mitra, Kolkata: Indian Associated Publishing Company
  • 1982 - The Adventures of Ghanada, translated by Lila Majumdar, New Delhi: National Book Trust, India
  • 1983 - Ghanadar Hij Bij Bij by Premendra Mitra, Kolkata: Pakshiraj Prakashani
  • 1985 - Ghanada O Mou-Ka-Sha-Bi-Sh by Premendra Mitra, Kolkata: Shoibya Prakashan Bibhag
  • 1987 - Mandhatar Tope O Ghanada by Premendra Mitra, Kolkata: Ananda Publishers Private Limited
  • 1989 - Ghanada O Dui Doshor Mamababu O Parashar by Premendra Mitra, Kolkata: Muktapatra Publications
  • 2004 - Mosquito and Other Stories, translated by Amlan Das Gupta, Kolkata: Penguin, India

Anthologies[edit]

  • Ghanada Samagra 1
  • Ghanada Samagra 2
  • Ghanada Samagra 3

Ghanada's World Tour[edit]

Google (18 November 2020). "GhanaDa's World Tour" (Map). Google Maps. Google. Retrieved 18 November 2020.

References[edit]

  1. JAMUNA, K. A. (2017-06-01). Children's Literature in Indian Languages. Publications Division Ministry of Information & Broadcasting. ISBN 978-81-230-2456-1. Search this book on Amazon.com Logo.png
  2. Bhattacharya, Atanu; Hiradhar, Preet (2018). "The Insectesimal tall tale: Historical catachresis and ethics in the science fiction of Premendra Mitra". Journal of Postcolonial Writing. 54 (2): 174–186. doi:10.1080/17449855.2017.1332676. Retrieved 14 November 2020. Unknown parameter |s2cid= ignored (help)
  3. Sengupta, Debjani (2010). "Sadhan Babu's friends: Science fictions in Bengali from 1882 to 1974". In Hoagland, Erica; Sarwal, Reema. Science fiction, Imperialism and the Third World - Essays on Post Colonial Literature and Film. North Carolina, USA: McFarland and Company Inc. Publishers. p. 115 - 126. ISBN 978-0-7864-4789-3. Search this book on Amazon.com Logo.png
  4. Roy, Sandip (7 January 2018). "The furure in the past - Can Bengali science fiction grow up?". The Indian Express. Retrieved 17 November 2020.
  5. Mohan, Lal, ed. (1992). "Science fiction (Bengali)". Encyclopedia of Bengali Literature. V. New Delhi: Sahitya Academy. p. 3889. ISBN 81-260-1221-8. Search this book on Amazon.com Logo.png
  6. Roy, Biswajit (16 November 2014). "ঘনাদা". www.anandabazar.com/. Retrieved 16 November 2020.
  7. 7.0 7.1 Mitra, Premendra (2000). "মশা". In Dasgupta, Surajit. ঘনাদা সমগ্র - পর্ব ১. Ananda Publishers. p. 21-29. ISBN 81-7215-395-3. Search this book on Amazon.com Logo.png
  8. 8.0 8.1 8.2 Mitra, Premendra (2000). Dasgupta, Surajit, ed. ঘনাদা সমগ্র - পর্ব ১. Ananda Publishers. ISBN 81-7215-395-3. Search this book on Amazon.com Logo.png
  9. 9.0 9.1 Ganguly, A K (1974). "Premendra Mitra's science fiction". SPAN.
  10. Mitra, Prenedra (2001). "ঘনাদা এলেন". In Dasgupta, Surajit. ঘনাদা সমগ্র - পর্ব ২. Ananda Publishers. p. 401. ISBN 81-7756-101-4. Search this book on Amazon.com Logo.png

External links[edit]


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