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The Immortal Literateur: Balkrishna Sama & Laxmi Prasad Devkota

Posted by Ramesh Khati on June 14, 2009

Dirgha Raj Prasai

Dirgha Raj Prasai

Dirgha Raj Prasai is a former member of parliament in Nepal, former consultant of the administrative staff college of Nepal. He has written many books and articles, and is now a political analyst based in Kathmandu contributing to different newspapers and sites.

Literature and music are property of a nation. Nepalese laureates have significantly contributed to lead the country in creative path. Well known Sanskrit poet Kalidas says “Kavi karoti kabyani, ras jananti pandita” which means poet creates an epic and scholars enjoy it. Literature is mirror of present and future timeline. Music represents the present status. However literature guides present and future. Bhanubhakta, by translating Ramayana to Nepali language, not only contributed the extension of Nepali language but also united Nepalese people emotionally.

Hirdaya Chandra Singh Pradhan spreaded the message of improvement of the country and superstitious society. Lekh Nath Paudyal made aware the society to build its character. Great Poet Devkota leaded the country to freedom writing ” Beautiful, peaceful and great Nepal”. Balkrishna Sama enriched Nepali literature with his various drama and literatures. In one of great epic Chiso chulho (Cold stove), Sama spreads message of equity by showing the love of Sante Damai (lower caste) with Gauri of upper caste. Bhimnidhi Tiwari exposed the opportunistic characters and wrote that here (in our society) dogs are also worshipped. Similarly Dharanidhar Koirala made aware to Nepalese society. He says “Oh Nepal! Will I die seeing your smiling face or not”. In particular, he did his best for social betterment. Siddhicharan Shrestha uplifted national freedom and patriotism. Gopal Pande tried to change literature to pure creation. Similarly, laureates Lain Singh Bangdel, Surya Bikram Gyewali, Bhawani Bhikshu, Parasmani Pradhan and others contributed for increment of prestige of Nepal.

I never forget the great poet and dramatist Balkrishna Sama. I had been frequently meeting him since 1968 till he passed away. I visited him every Saturday. Still I remember as I missed the time, the honorable poet would search me. He used to ask me the reason of my absence. I have gone through all of his poems alluded in his drama’s book with doing acting. The poet also stressed anything necessary with the color of acting. The reader who goes through ‘Chiso Chulo‘ (Cold stove) and ‘Niyamit Akasmita‘ (Regular Casualties) knows the essence of life. He has written so many books as ‘Amar Sinha‘, Mutuko Byetha‘, ‘Mukunda Indira‘- having mission, vision and goals.

Many laureates and artists praise Balkrishna Sama for his great contributions. Here are few words quoted by artist Gehendraman Amatya. “Sama was colonial Nepalese army. He resigned from his post and served Nepalese literature. He joined the opposition group against Rana regime. He established himself as a successful laureate, dramatist and artist and became immortal figure. He created an art just observing the funeral at Aryaghat, Pashupati. He was called Shakespeare of Nepal. Sama hated foreign goods and loved native ones. After the revolution of 1950, he became Director of Extension Department. Later on, he also became first chief editor of Gorkhapatra (the first Nepali national daily newspaper).” One of his poems has left a profound impression in my life. The content of the poem was-‘ If the immortals descended from the heaven lying to the people, they will be down trodden for ever.’ Sama was born in February 10, 1903 (24 Magh, 1959 BS). He was very talented and great nationalist. Sama was nominated- the Vice chancellor of Academy and the member of the Royal council (Raj Shabha).

Though I could not meet the great poet Laxmi Prasad Devkota, I had read him and was aware of his precious thinking and marvelous poetic characters. Devkota was a stanch democrat. He was born in 13 Nov, 1909 (1966 Kartik 27) on Laxmi Puja. He has written so many books to uphold democratic norms & values. He was a poet of nature having the great quality of patriotism. It will be a great achievement of reading Devkota’s Muna-Madan and Laxmi Essay Collections. The epic ‘Sulochana‘ leaves one deep impressing line as- ‘I am the king of the house though it is cottage.’

Nepalese literature has been blessed with the genius of romantic trends introduced with the rise of Devkota. His quest advocated human values, virtues and civility in nature. Devkota & Sama both are follower of Vedic period as well as western philosophy. Devkota was an extempore poet and Sama was a therapist. The topmost playwright, Balkrishna Sama, gave a new impetus to the Kalidas period of Sanskrit, being inspired by the Greek dramatist Homar and English scholor-poet Shskespeare. The poet Bhimnidhi Tiwari also made a great contribution in plays-writing.

In 1937 Nepali Bhasha Anubad Parisad (Nepali Language Translation Council) was established under the chairmanship of Balakrishna Sama and poets Laxmi Prasad Devkota, Madav Ghemire, Badarinath Bhattarai, Purna Prasad Brahman and Shyamdas Vaishnav were involved in the council. Devkota had a multi-dimensional personality. His activities were not limited only as poet, but he contributed in various fields. In 1957, Devkota became the minister under premiership of Dr. K.I. Sigh and played a vital role in searching appropriate land at Kirtipur for Tribhuwan University. After the restoration of democracy of 1950 we never forget poet-laureate – Lekhnath Paudyal, the great poet Laxmi Prasad Devkota, dramatist Balakrishna Sama, the poet of era Siddhicharan Shrestha, Gopal Pande Asim, Bhupi Shercan. Those poets were of infallible character, never sold their soul, were ever free, spoke the voice of their conscience and never breached the nation. We, Nepalese people want such independent creators to born in today’s Nepal.

Some so called donors, with the help of black money, have established Literary Prize Funds. They are polluting the field of literature and society. Now-a-days it seems the field of literature is captured by such opportunistic pollutants. We want such nasty things would not repeat now and then. The literature shouldn’t be interfered by political dirtiness because it creates free opinion and innovative ideas. Therefore laureates are accepted as creators and forecasters of societal reform.

The  writer can be reached at email: dirgharajprasai@gmail.com


2 Responses to “The Immortal Literateur: Balkrishna Sama & Laxmi Prasad Devkota”

  1. Ramananda Jha said

    Reading this article about Sama & Devkota I am very impressed. I extend thanks to Mr. Prasai. I request and hope, Gorkha Times should publish such analitical articles & opinion.
    Thank you.

    • Thank you Ramanand Jha Ji on behalf of Dirgha Raj Prasai Ji. You can reach out to him in his email too. Gorkhatimes will do its best to bring the best from the pen of Mr Prasai, we cherish reading his articles as much as you do. Keep on visiting Gorkhatimes and we assure you, you won’t be disappointed as other articles from him are lined up to be published.

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