When we talk about Hindi literature and theatre, we just can't ignore the name of Bharatendu Harishchandra. Born on 9 September 1850, he was a renowned poet and writer of his time. In fact, it would be no wrong to say that he is still one of the greatest Hindi writers of modern India.
Perhaps, therefore, he is known as the Father of Hindi Literature and Hindi Theatre. He penned several dramas, letters, articles, poems, etc. One such popular drama is 'Andher Nagri'. The drama is quite popular and is often included in children's textbooks.
On his birth anniversary, we are going to tell you some interesting facts about him. Scroll down the article to read about him.
1. Bharatendu Harishchandra was born in Banaras. His father Gopal Chandra was a poet and wrote under his pen name, 'Girdhar Das'. Though he was a Choudhary, his family's roots can be traced back to landlords in Bengal belonging to the Agrawal community.
2. Bharatenedu lost his parents while he was still young. Still, he was deeply influenced by his late parents.
3. While he visited Jagannath Temple in Puri with his family members in 1865, he was deeply influenced by the Bengal Renaissance and decided to introduce various genres of novels in the Hindi language as well.
4. Soon in 1868, he came up with the Hindi translation of the famous Bengali drama 'Vidyasundar'.
5. After this, he didn't turn back and dedicated his entire life to bringing reforms in Hindi Literature.
6. He was given the title of 'Bharatendu' as his initial name at a public meeting held in Kashi in 1880. The title was given after acknowledging his valuable services given to the Hindi literature in the form of dramas, stories, novels and poems.
7. One cannot turn a blind eye to the contributions of Bharatendu Harishchandra in journalism and poetry.
8. Not only this, but he also encouraged people to prefer Indian goods and products over those made in foreign countries. Once he urged people not to buy foreign goods through his magazine named, 'Harishchandra Magazine' in 1874.
9. He also wrote about the history of the Agrawal community quite often.
10. Bharatendu Harishchandra was often referred to as an influential example of "traditionalist", especially in the northern states of India.
11. Some of his famous works include, Dramas: Vaidika Himsa Himsa Na Bhavati released in 1873, Niladevi released in 1881, Andher Nagari (City of Darkness) in 1881;
Poems: Prem Malika (1872), Bhakta Sarvagya, Raga Sangrah released in 1880, Phulon Ka Guchchha in 1882, Madhumukul (1881) and Prem Prakalpa;
Translations: Karpuramanjari, Ratnavali, Durlabh Bandhu and Mudrarakshasha and many more.
12. He died on 6 January 1885. Even today, the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting of India awards writers and poets with the Bharatendu Harishchandra Awards with the aim of promoting original writings.