Saturday, November 15, 2008

Banaili Roots to Raj continued---Dynasty 3rd part

Kumar sahibs of Deorhi- Banaili Champanagar-

Sangeet-Bhaskar[1], Sangeet-Sudhakar[2]
Kumar Shyamanand Singh Bahadur

Among the Kumar Sahebs of Banaili Champanagar the eldest, Rajkumar Shyamanand Singh was born on 27.7.1916, as a most coveted male child of Raja Kirtyanand Sinha and Rani Prabhavati Devi.
After the birth of three daughters and a son who had died in his second year, Shyamanand’s birth came as the first cooling splash of rain on a patch of dry and thirsty land. The death of his infant elder brother had left such an un-nerving impact on his parents that they were very insecure and unsure about the longevity of this child. Although, they regarded this child as a boon of mother goddess, received through the tantrik efforts of Sri Kalipado Sen Gupta of Bakulia temple at Asansole, they could not free themselves of a sense of insecurity and doubt. As a result no rejoicings took place at his birth and the matter was kept at a low profile till the birth of his younger brother Kumar Bimalanand Sinha on 17.12.1918, when the presence of the two heirs was announced formally amidst great rejoicings and festivities that continued for a full month.
Shyamanand was very naughty as a boy and was quite averse to all the efforts made by his parents to make him study. He started his basic education at the Zila School Purnea but was later shifted to Rajkumar College Raipur where he refused to continue after the 1st year and was brought home much to the discomfort of his scholarly father.
Mr. and Mrs. Belleti were kept as private tutors. They came to stay at Banaili Champanagar and in course of time, successfully educated the young boy in the basics and groomed him into a befitting prince.
At the age of 16, on 10/6/1932, Kumar Shyamanand Singh married Rani Nirmala Devi, the daughter of Shrotriya, Pinakar Jha [3] of Sarisab.
When Raja Kirtyanand Sinha died in the year 1938, Shyamanand was the only grown up (major) male successor of his father. He had to take up the responsibilities of the Karta-ship of his entire family. But being very little inclined towards worldly affairs, and being completely engrossed in musical pursuits, he had to give up the managerial responsibilities upon the shoulders of his younger brothers Kumar Bimalanand and Kumar Taranand Sinha.
When he was offered the title of Raja Bahadur, by the government of India, he declined, saying that he was a musician, and not a Raja.
Nevertheless, he commanded great respect and admiration from the people, who regarded him as a Raja till his death in 1994, nearly thirty seven years after the Banaili Raj had ceased to exist.
Kumar Shyamanand was a fine horseman as well as motorist. He had a special fascination for motor-cars.
In the field of sports, Shyamanand scored as a fine foot ball player on the district level and a top class player of Billiards on national level.
In 1938 he joined Bihar Youngman’s Institute. He learnt the finer techniques of Billiards, primarily from Ram Khelavan Saw of Muzzaffarpur and later from Kingsley Kennerley, the world famous billiard player. He was the first champion of ‘Bihar State Billiards and Snookers Championship’ and almost always reached the Finals, winning the title in 1951, 1952, 1953, 1954, 1955, 1956, 1958, and 1959. He represented Bihar in at least 11 national tournaments. One of his most memorable games was played against J. M. Lafir (Ceylon No.1), within the National Championship at Bangalore.
At about the time of his marriage, he took a liking to music, which eventually became the very essence of his life, his chief occupation and career.
He started by learning to play the harmonium from his brother in law, Babu Durganandan Singh, and soon started playing quite well on the clarionet.
But the turning point came when he happened to hear a recording of vocal classical music, in a gramophone shop at Kurseong, on his way to Darjeeling in 1935. He purchased this gramophone record of Bhismadev Chatterjee of Calcutta and returned home, only to play it over and over again. This record with renderings in Raag Rageshwari Bahar and Patdeep, moved him to such an extent that he made up his mind to learn music from the above artist.
Ustad Bhismadeb Chatterjee was invited to perform at Banaili Champanagar on the occasion of the sacred thread ceremony of Kumar Jayanand Sinha in 1936. Shyamanand was so moved by his performance that he wept like a baby. He prayed to the Ustad to become his Guru and the latter agreed.
Shyamanand took lessons from Bhishmadeb Chatterjee between 1936 and 1939 on quite a regular basis. But when the latter joined the Aurobindo Ashram at Pondicherry in 1939, the music tuitions of Shyamanand was interrupted. Later, on the advice of his Guru he requested Ustad Bachu Khan Sahib of Agra to come to Banaili Champanagar to impart music lessons to him. From 1940 to 1962-63 Bachu Khan Sahib became the Guru of Shyamanand Singh who reached adorable heights in learning the intricacies of Indian classical vocal music. Besides Bhismadeb Chatterjee and Baachu Khan, Kumar Sahib took musical tuitions from many eminent singers like Ustad Muzzaffar Khan, Ustad Mubarak Ali Khan, Bholanath Bhatt, Kedarjee, Mahaveer Mulik and Jaduweer Mullik.
Although Kumar Sahib abstained from making a profession of his singing talents, his music became very popular among the admirers of Indian classical music. He excelled in Bandish and Bhajan and possessed a treasure in the form of Bandish of Khayaal as well as Thumri. He gave utmost importance to the presentation of the Bandish and strongly maintained that without the proper and artistic presentation of Bandish it was impossible to develop sentiment and “Rasa” in one’s singing.
Kumar Saheb used to say “Sing from your Soul, not from your throat”. At a music conference in Purnea, he sang in the presence of the then governor of Bihar “Md. Zakir Hussain”. The governor came up to the stage, embraced him and announced “Kumar sahib does not sing, he prays” Kumar Shyamanand’s music was divine. Gajendra narayan singh writes about him- “Kumar Shyamanand Singh of Banaili Estate had acquired such excellence in singing Bandish that Surashri Kesar Bai and many such big and renowned artists recognized his talent. If you do not believe me you may ask Pandit Jasraj. After hearing the Bandish performances of Kumar Saheb, Jasraj wept like a child and wished that he had such Excellence.”
Once, when Surshri Kesar Bai was present at one of the music gathering at Champanagar, she heard Kumar Sahib Sing a Bhajan “Dukh haro Dwarkanath” (which later became one of his most popular Bhajans). She was touched by the rendering of the Bhajan, to such an extent that she requested the Kumar Sahib to teach him the above Bhajan and said that she was ready to become his disciple, for this Bhajan. Kumar Sahib taught her the said Bhajan, which she sang at a couple of conferences but never forgot to mention the name of her Guru, for this Bhajan. Ustad Vilayat Khan (Agrewale), in his book “Sangeetagyon Ke Sansmaran” has stated that in Bihar there was no better connisseaur of music than Kumar Shyamanand Singh”
Although he had many disciples[4], none could attain similar heights. None had the capability of grasping his profound skill and divine notes, and be called a worthy disciple of his. I, being one of his disciples must confess here that I did not learn with enough determination and drive and shall repent for it as long as I live.
Kumar Shyamanand Singh represented the province at the Akhil Bhartiya Sangeet Naatak Academy, Delhi. He was also one of the chief patrons of Visweswar-kala-niketan, Sarisab, which had decorated him with the title of ‘Sangeet Bhaskar’. He was one of the Chief Patrons of All –India- Music-Conference and presented the convocation address at the 11th All India Music Conference of The Prayag Sangit Samiti at Allahabad on 19.12.1948. He did a lot to promote Indian Classical Music in the District of Purnea. It was with his efforts that a Musical organization named ‘Kalakaar Sangh’ was formed in Purnea, through which several Musical conferences were held successfully in the District. He remained the President of ‘Kala Bhawan Purnea’ for a long period of time. Another Musical Institution Named ‘Saarang’ was established in Purnea under his austere patronage and guidance in 1991. It is worth mentioning here that at ‘Saarang’ Kumar Shyamanand Singh gave weekly Music tuitions to a class of aspiring students of classical Music.
Kumar Sahib was an active member of the Akhil Bhartiya Sankirtan Mahamandal. His contributions towards the cult of Kirtan in the district and adjoining areas shall not be forgotten for many decades to come. He never failed to attend even the humblest Kirtan gatherings in the area and motored down to the remotest spots, to encourage the efforts made by the common people to pray to the god through Kirtan. In this way Kumar Saheb reached to the masses and emerged as a Royal Saint (Rajarshi).
During his last days a recording of seven hours was made of his vocal renderings, by the Central Museum, Akashwani, and is preserved in the archives at Delhi. This also includes an interview.

Kumar Bimalanand Sinha Bahadur

The second, Kumar Bimalanand Sinha born on 17/12/1918, was more known by his other name “Bholanjee”. After his early education at Zila School Purnea, he joined the Patna College for his higher education. But unfortunate circumstances interrupted his higher studies. Among his brothers, Bimalanand was hit in the worst way, by the untimely death of his father. The absence of a grown up male guardian, led to a chain of problems in managing the affairs of the estate as well as home. Finding his elder brother to be completely disinterested and incompetent in these matters his mother was compelled to ask him to make a sacrifice of his education for the sake of saving his family and brothers from the ensuing crisis. So, Bimalanand had to leave College just a few months before his graduation tests.
It was due to his fatherly affection, wisdom, guidance and accommodating nature that the sons of late Kirtyanand Sinha, remained united as one joint family, and commanded respect from the government as well as society as the 8 annas patti of Banaili Raj.
Kumar Bimalanand Sinha was married at the age of 16 to Rani Sati Devi, the daughter of Shrotriya Pandit Govind Narayan Jha[5] of Ujaan.
Besides, Angling, Shikar, Billiards, Football, Tennis, Horse-riding and Motoring, he had a special interest in studying the various Sanskrit-texts and commanded considerable knowledge of the Hindu traditions and religious rituals. But he specialized in Motor-mechanics and Electrical Science.
Kumar Bimalanand loved Indian Classical Music. In co-operation with his musical brother Shyamanand, he became a member of the All-India Music Conference (Allahabad), Kalakaar Sangh (Purnea) and Kala-Bhawan (Purnea).
Having taken the entire burden of managing the family affairs at home he came to supervise all the religious obligations of the house of Champanagar. In 1966 he became the Managing Trustee of the ‘Sri Kalipuja Durgapujadi Trust’ and looked after the performance of religious festivties at Champanagar till his death in 1982.
He was a founder member (Treasurer) of the Purnea College and performed as a key figure in the establishment of the above institution. He also made his contributions as a representative of the Public in the District judicial vigilance committee from 1941 to his death on 31.5.1982. For many years he also served as the only member from the public (special Invitee) in The District Crime control Committee.
Being an accomplished Agriculturist in the District Kumar Bimalanand Sinha founded the First Farmer’s Union in Purnea and worked as its President.
His contributions towards the Industrialization of the District can be seen in his endeavors in the direction of Sugar Industry. He was the director as well as the first Public Share-holder of the Banmanhki Sugar Mills and later became the Chairman of its board.
Kumar Bimalanand played football at the district level. It was due to the influence and pressure of his friend Nepuda (Amal Mazumdar), the famous Indian National Footballer, that he was convinced of the need of a public Football-ground in Purnea and their Personal Football-Field in the Navratan-house compound was allowed to be used by the District Sports Association of Purnea.
Kumar Saheb was also associated with the Indian Independence movement through his closest friend, Bhuvaneswari Choudhary of Ganeshpur, and Kamaldev Narayan Singh who later became the Industry Minister of Bihar. Bimalanand Sinha was a devoted but a quiet Member of the Rashtriya Seva Sangh since 1945.

Kumar Taranand Sinha Bahadur

The third, Kumar Taranand Sinha alias Bhagwanjee was born on 14/11/1920. After completing his school from Purnea Zila School he became a graduate from the Patna College. Like his elder brother Bimalanand, he also had to take up the responsibilities of the management of the estate, early in life, although he was fortunate enough to complete his graduation.
He was married to Rani Rukmini Devi, the daughter of Padmadutt Jha[6] of Ujaan at a grand ceremony held at Banaili Chamganagar in 1940.
He had to take up the joint receiver-ship of Banaili Raj as well as his own branch of Champanagar in 1947-48. He shifted to Chhowni Kothi in Bhagalpur, where he spent several years of his early life. During his days at Bhagalpur, he entered public life and started taking a keen interest in political affairs of the Province. The Banaili Raj vested in the government of India in 1958. Soon after, in 1962 he became one of the founder members of the University Service Commission of Bihar. Around this time he shifted his abode to the Banaili house at Patna. He joined as the chairman of the University Service Commission in 1966 and remained in office till 1969 after which he joined as a Resident representative of TISCO and retired in 1980. He was also the chairman of all selection (employment) committee of TISCO.
Besides, such sports in which almost every member of his family made a mark in, like Shikar, Football, Billiards and Snookers, he played tennis well and was a keen nature lover. He excelled in Billiards and Snooker and was the State champion in Billiards in 1957 and 1966.

Besides the above-mentioned, he was:-
1) Elected as a member of the first Bihar legislative assembly in 1946.
2) Member of the congress party from 1941 to 1962.
3) Member of Patna University Senate from 1947 to 1964.
4) Member of Bhagalpur University Senate from 1947 to 1962.
5) Member of Ranchi University Senate.
6) Member of the governing body of Raj Kumar College, Raipur.
7) On the board of Governors, X.L.R.I for 10 years (1971 to 1980).
8) Vice chairman of Administrative and Secretarial Economy Committee, Bihar.
9) Member of First Police manual Revision committee, Bihar.
10) Director of the State Industrial Development Corporation, Bihar.
11) Vice-president of Bihar Rifle Association.
12) President of the Billiards & Snookers Federation of India for 2 consecutive terms of 4years each.
13) President of Bihar State Billiards Association.
14) Founder president of Patna District Cricket Association.
15) Vice-president of Bihar Cricket Association.
16) President of Bihar Weightlifting Association.
17) President of Bihar Body Building Association.
18) President of Chetna Samiti, Patna.
19) President of Lions Club, Patna.
20) President of Bihar Youth Hostels Association
21) Director of West Bokaro Collieries Ltd.
22) Director of the Hindustan Tasar & Silk Mills Ltd, Bhagalpur and
23) Director of the Mining Industries, Bhagalpur.

Kumar Durganand Sinha bahadur

Kumar Durganand was born in 1922. According to the custom prevailing in his family he was married at the young age of 20, in 1942, to Rani Radha Devi who hailed from a high born Yogya family of Mithila which had migrated and settled at Palamu in south Bihar.
After graduating from the Patna University he went to England in 1946 for higher studies. He joined St’ John’s College in Cambridge and completed his master’s degree in Psychology under the guidance of the famous scholar, Prof. Bartlett.
On his return to India in 1949 he took up the career of a Professor of Psychology and taught at the Patna College and later at I.I.T. Kharagpur till 1961 after which he joined the Allahabad University. He has the honour of being the first professor of the department of Psychology at Allahabad which soon achieved international standards under his able head-ship, and emerged as a National Centre of Advanced studies in the subject.
Kumar Durganand Sinha became famous for his outstanding contributions towards the study of Psychology and was decorated with the ‘Wundt’ Medal at Leipzig in Germany. He was also the First President of the International Association of cross- cultural Psychology from the Third world.
Apart from the above he was –
1. Natinal Fellow of the University Grants Commission.
2. National Fellow of Indian Council for Social-Science Research.
3. Director of A. N. Sinha Institute for Social sciences Patna, from 1982 to 1985.
Kumar Durganand Sinha died in 1998. A library in the department of Psychology has been named after him at Allahabad, to remember the works of this outstanding Scholar of Psychology. Kumar Durganand Sinha was a worthy and true descendent of his Scholarly and learned forefathers like Mahamahopaddhyay Gangadhar and Dharmaadhikarnik Gadadhar.

Kumar Jayanand Sinha Bahadur

Kumar Jayanand alias Jaadavji was born on 12.8.1925 and died at the age of 79 on 16.8.2004. He was married in 1947, to Rani Kishori Devi[7], the Daughter of Babu Bhairav Thakur of Singhbaar.
Though a simpleton at heart, Jaadavji could perform with skilled ease, the intricate techniques of Indian Classical music which he had learnt from his musician elder brother and the famous Pt. Bholanath Bhatt.
Kumar jayanand Sinha was an excellent player of Billiards and Snookers and won several State Championship Tournaments from Uttar Pradesh. He also worked for the cause of upliftment of Drama (One Act Play) and Classical Indian Music in and around Allahabad where he lived during a major portion of his life.

Kumar Adyanand Sinha Bahadur

Kumar Adyanand Sinha alias Nunuji, lost his father at the very young age of seven. As a result, he received special attention and affectionate care from his elder brothers and sisters who petted and pampered him to such an extent that he grew up to become a man with typical whims and idiosyncrasies. On one side, he developed such expensive and princely preferences as owning fancy Cars which he changed for new models every second year and on the other side he professed and maintained that it was most undesirable and extravagant to keep even an elaborate wardrobe. While he remained unmarried, much against the norms of Hinduism and the wishes of his mother and brothers, he was as orthodox as any staunch Hindu.
He graduated in Economics from the Patna College and completed his master’s degree in the same subject. He was also a scholar of Indian Philosophy, Astrology and Sanskrit.
Kumar Adyanand Sinha was a fine player of Billiards and Snookers and had the privilege of learning the techniques of the game from the famous Wilson Jones. More than once, he emerged as the winner in the State Championship Tournaments in Billiards and Snookers from his native state.
After his mother’s death in 1975, Adyanand was drawn towards the cult of Krishna-worship and he became a
Disciple of the “Chaitanya-Mahaprabhu” school of thought. He came to be closely associated with the various religious and temple institutions at Vrindaban and Puri and was moved to see the dilapidated condition of some the institutions which were dying for want of financial support. Now he readily opened his purse for the cause of everything and anything related to his favourite Lord Krishna. During the next few years he spent a few crores to restore and renovate several temple institutions, the Radha govind Temple at Brindaban and the Gambheera at Puri being the chief among them.
During the latter part of his life he devoted his time and money for the benefit of the common people and thus stepped into the shoes of his illustrious father. He started by creating a Trust at Allahabad named ‘Kirti Trust’ after the name of his father, to promote literary talents and provide medical help to needy patients. Next, he donated more than four crores of rupees to the Mahavir Cancer Sansthaan Patna, for the construction of the first floor of the hospital which has been named after his mother Rani Prabhavati Devi. A guest house was also constructed for the use of the attendants of the cancer patients. An intensive care unit was also made at Vrindaban in the name of his mother.
At Purnea, Kumar Adyanand Sinha created another Charitable Trust (Raja Kirtyanand Sinha Memorial Trust) which provides the convenient use of a Community hall-cum-Auditorium to the general public at a nominal cost of maintenance. He also donated Rs 1600000/- to Vidya Vihar Residential School[8] for the construction of a block of building to be named after his father.
Kumar Adyanand Sinha Died in 2002.

Deorhi Garh-banaili -

Kumar Ramanand Sinha Bahadur

Kumar Ramanand Sinha was the eldest son of Raja Kalanand Sinha of Banaili. He was born in the year 1901. He received basic education as a student of Purnea Zila School. At the age of 16 he was married to Rani Ramabati of Mangrauni[9], at an elaborate wedding ceremony at Deorhi Champanagar. It was a lavish affair and the total expenditure amounted to Rs.1, 04,000/-.
From a very young age he developed a strong dislike towards the joint management of the Raj. The dominating nature of his uncle as against the meek disposition of his simpleton father may have kindled the fire of dissatisfaction and mistrust in him. Although Kalanand’s name was used and written as the Karta of the joint family, yet it was Kirtyanand who managed and decided everything, although after consulting his elder brother.
From the very time of the proposal of partition etc., which was strongly recommended by him, Ramanand assumed complete control over the house-hold of his father and played a decisive role in all matters, big or small. In a way he stepped into the place vacated by his uncle, with a firmer hold, due to his superior position as the eldest son and an heir.
Kalanand Sinha died of pleurisy and displacement of heart in the year 1922. Now Ramanand, as the Karta of his joint family (including his brother, sisters and mother) took up the related responsibilities. First, he consolidated his position as a leading prince of the region and established his power and prestige in the area.
Next, he completed the construction of the palace at Garh-banaili. The magnificent palace, the picturesque layout of the grounds, the adjoining gardens and parks spoke[10] highly of his fine tastes and artistic ideas. Although the Deorhi had all the salient features of a typical household of the family, it was huge in its expanse. The Garhi walls enclosed approximately 100 Bighas of land. The main palace called Kala Bhawan was the biggest that the entire clan of Banaili could boast of. The palaces and residences of close relatives were situated at a considerable distance from each other. They were not close knit like the other Garhies of Banaili. I place here a layout of the Garhi and annexes for the readers to make an idea of a typical residence of one of the biggest Zamindari dynasties of the province. (See Map No. 6).
That Kumar Ramanand Sinha possessed a special knack for planning lay-outs of gardens and parks is evident from the Zoological and Botanical garden laid out by him at the gates of the Garh-banaili Palace. This Garden which spread out in about 100 bighas, contained a fine collection of exotic and rare botanical specimens. The special feature was the small artificial island at the right side of the centre of the park which was developed as a natural forest with an artificial stream falling into the small lake that surrounded it. Various animals and birds, like Tigers, Crocodiles and Peacocks were kept in cages set up at different places within the huge expanse of the garden. One flowering tree, called the Sivlingi, is indeed unique for its flower which forms into a shape resembling a phallus with a serpent’s hood swaying over it, exactly like the combination of Lord Siva and Shesh-Naga. Although the above-mentioned gardens are no more the Sivlingi exists and is a source of public attraction.
But at the home front, differences were, slowly cropping up, between him and his younger brother Kumar Krishnanand. Matters came to the surface soon after the younger Kumar became a major in 1925. Krishnanand may have disagreed with most of the projects and methods of his brother and started expressing his dissatisfaction, whereupon ill feelings developed between the brothers.
Finally, in October 1925 feeling unsafe and cheated Krishnand left Garhbanaili with his friends and well wishers. He wandered from one place to another, for some time, unable to decide his next step. His friends advised him not to return to live at Garhbanaili, for the sake of his interests in the estate. Finally, he decided to set up his abode at the estate house at Sultangange in Bhagalpur. This Sultangange-kothi had been the residence of his aunt ‘Kamakhya Dai’ and was later converted into a bungalow for the use of estate proprietors and officials, during official tours to adjoining areas. Here, Kumar Krishnanand Sinha built a suitable palace for himself and named it Krishnagarh. Kumar Ramanand continued to live in the palace at Garhbanaili, which remained a joint property between him and his brother.
Ramanand Singh was a keen patron of music and drama. Renowned singer of Indian Classical Music, Pt. Ramchandra Jha of Panichobha was one of his Durbar singers. Later Durga Dutta Jha of the same village also joined his Durbar. Ramanand Sinha had constructed a beautiful stage hall next to the Gosown-ghar and Marbaa where, on the occasion of Janmasthmi, elaborate shows of music and drama were held. On such occasions he would make personal appearances on stage, in various roles. He often directed these plays and had also written a couple of them, namely ohj vtqZZu] fot;&fotf;uh] fdlku ckyd] drZO;] and prqFkÊ&paæ.
Ramanand Sinha opened an English medium high school at Garhbanaili and named it Kalanand Vidyalaya after his late Father. He spent Rs.40000/- towards the building and accessories of the school and spent Rs.6000/- annually for its maintenance. Later he made a gift of 100 acres of land for the upkeep of the School. He contributed Rs.5000/- to complete the English high school building at Jalalabad (Munger) which was named Ramanand High English School and maintained it with annual grants. He also donated Rs.20000/- and a gift of 3 Bighas of land towards the construction of the Girls high English school in Purnea. After his death, his widows tried to keep up their husband’s good name and started Ramanand Middle School at Garh-Banaili. The Palace guest house was donated to be used as the School-building.
Ramanand’s sincere efforts, towards providing better medical facilities to the people were clearly marked by a chain of contributions made in this direction by him. The building of the Biology Department of the T.N.B. College at Bhagalpur was his personal contribution to the Institution. He made a gift of Rs.15000/- to the Sadar Hospital in Purnea, for the construction of an outdoor dispensary. A separate section of the Hospital building was made in his name and called ‘Ramanand block’. For this purpose he had donated Rs.100000/- to the Purnea hospital. A charitable dispensary was opened by him in the name of his mother at Radhanagar in Garhbanaili. The Sal-tammam of 1345 Fasli records that a sum of Rs.1000/- was spent every year by him for medical charity to the people of the surrounding areas. The figure of Rs.6413/- which amounts the total annual expenditure of Raj Banaili towards medical subscriptions, bears testimony to his keen interest, which he shared with his uncle and brother. Some of his other contributions where he joined as a co–proprietor of the 9 annas Banaili estate were the following:-
1. Rs. 4000/- For construction of dispensary at Strand Road, Bhagalpur, 1323 F.s.
2. Rs. 3000/- For construction of Lady Doctor’s quarters at Munger.
3. Rs. 500/-To Banka Dispensary in 1929
4. Rs. 7000/-To St John’s Ambulance Fund Association till 1324 F.S.
5. Rs. 4000/- for construction of Bariarpur Dispensary.
After his death Rani Ramavati Devi of Banaili made a generous contribution of Rs. 15,000 for the Ramanand biological laboratory of the College for teaching botany and zoology up to B.Sc standard.
With an aim to promote scientific methods in agriculture and farming, Kumar Ramanand had established a small farm at Garhbanaili, where interested farmers were always welcome to learn new tactics and techniques. In the field of sports, he left his mark by starting a football tournament which came to be known as ‘Kumar shield’ in the district.
He showed keen interest in Tantrik rituals. Himself being a devotee of Kali, he had enshrined an idol of the goddess in his private Puja room at Garhbanaili. Under his patronage an elaborate Durga-puja Paddhati was prepared by leading Pandits[11] of the province. This system of worship was implemented at the Devighara at Garhbanaili on the occasion of Durga-puja. Today this system of ritualistic worship is practised, not only in the Garhbanaili Devighara by his successors but in most of the eminent places of Durga-puja in the Nashira Parganna. Ramanand Singh helped in promoting the study of Tantra by donating considerable amount of money to the Bihar Sanskrit Samiti, to be given as award to the student who presented the best essay on Tantra.
Kumar Ramanand Sinha was always eager to help in the development of his own community i.e. the Maithil Brahmins. His concern is reflected in the growing number of competent Maithil employees in the Raj during his period. He encouraged many Shrotriyas to settle down within the Banaili Raj and helped them by sanctioning gifts of land for their use. At the same time, he was much opposed to the prevalent caste system of the Maithil Brahmins which, due to its inherent defects was leading to the fast deterioration of the community as a whole.
Kumar Ramanand Sinha was a very able administrator and maintained a keen vigil on the day to day management of the Raj and his personal estates. He was an active member of the district board of Purnea and acted as the municipal commissioner of Purnea for many years.
Kumar Saheb could easily foresee the inevitable end of the Zamindari System during the coming decades and had already started making plans accordingly. He shifted towards industrialization. In 1939 he started Purneswari Rice and Oil Mills[12] at Garh-Banaili. He encouraged the Famous J.K. Industries of Kanpur[13] to join him as a partner in Jute Industry. But for the untimely death of Kumar Ramanand in 1940, this factory would have set a leading example of Jute industry in this part of the country. With an aim to convert Garh-Banaili into an industrial town-ship he invited and encouraged the business houses of the Jejani, Khaitan and Taparias to settle and establish their business houses in the locality.
In spite of his industrial endeavors he was very much a part of the British Zamindari System. In 1930 Ramanand wrote to the governor of Bihar, James David Sifton appealing to him for the title of Raja Bahadur to be given to him in continuation of his father’s title and for the various services he had done for the public at large. But he did not live long enough to see his ambition fulfilled.
The family life of Kumar Ramanand Sinha was far from satisfactory. Complaints, made by his brother, that the latter had been forced to desert his family residence at Garh-Banaili, had put a shade of blame on Ramanand.
His marriage with Rani Ramabati had failed to produce any offspring, let alone an heir. Various medications and treatment proved fruitless. Clinging to the last ray of hope in the prediction of an Astrologer, who gave him an assurance of a child through a second marriage, he married again in 1935. His second wife was Rani Rameshwari, the daughter of Shrotriya Durgeshwar Thakur of Sonepur, Ujaan[14].
He constructed a new palace, due north of Kala Bhawan Palace in the year 1936. This building was yet another example of his fine and varied tastes. Every wing of the Palace had a separate character in the way that each section could be distinguished from the other in fashion and style. Some rooms were made and decorated in English fashion while the others gave a typical colonial look. The upper storey bore a distinct similarity to the houses of the hill stations. Yet, one would be completely at home as soon as one reached the inner courtyard which brought you back to the scene of a conservative Hindu household. This might have been the dream house of the Kumar as it surely led him towards the fulfillment of his dream of an heir.
At long last the prayers of Ramanand seemed to bear fruit when, in early 1940, Rani Rameswari expected a child. But Ramanand Sinha was not lucky enough to hold his much coveted child in his arms. He fell seriously ill in August and could not recover in spite of best medical treatments in the country. He died on 24/8/1940.
From the very time of his fatal illness, serious trouble started within the palace at Garhbanaili. Ramanand was dying without a child. The question of his inheritance and future lordship invited a period of conspiracies and feud.
His younger brother was summoned by his mother, Kalavati to be present at the critical moment. So, Kumar Krishnanand Came to Garhbanaili and was at his brother’s side when the end came. He performed the last rites of his brother according to the Shastra and was led to hold a claim on his estate and wealth.
Only after forty days of the death of the Kumar a daughter was born posthumously to him on 3/10/1940. She was nick-named Chintaa,[15] by her mothers who were laden with further worries (Chintaa) because she happened to be a girl. A boy would have made it easier for them to face the question of inheritance. Nevertheless, both her mothers clung to her as their only hope of survival against the designs of Kumar Krishnanand who was leaving no stone unturned to claim his brother’s entire inheritance.
It was mainly due to the wisdom and far-sighted vision of the senior Rani Ramavati Devi that the tides of misfortune and the period of trial could be overcome.
After a long period of intrigues and court battles the share of Ramanand Sinha in the Banaili-raj was divided between Krishnanand who got 5/12 and the two Ranies who jointly held 7/12.

Deorhi Krishnagarh –

Kumar Krishnanand Sinha Bahadur

Kumar Krishnanand Sinha was the youngest son of Raja Kalanand Sinha Bahadur. He was born in the year 1907. From his very childhood he became a favourite of his uncle Raja Bahadur Kirtyanand Sinha who called him ‘Paglu’ and became a Godfather to him by officiating as his Acharya-Guru on the occasion of his Upanayan. Although he could not take to higher studies like his uncle, he tried to follow his uncle’s footsteps in more than one field.
He was a fine Shikari and came to be very popular among his subjects for his keen interest in the the manly sport, which he had inherited from his ‘Shikari’ uncle.
Kumar Krishnanand Sinha was very tall and heavy. More than Six and a half feet tall, and weighing more than 150 kilograms, he presented himself as a Superman, though a very benevolent one, a true impression established by his kind and innocent face. He possessed a very strong physique, which he maintained through rigorous exercise in wrestling, Horse-riding and swimming. I have heard about an incident, in 1925 in Purnea, when his car, a Chevrolet had a punctured tyre and he lifted the car with ease and held it while the tyre was changed.
Krishnanand Sinha, with his benevolent nature and a mythological body build-up, emerged as a towering personality, who enchanted the eyes and hearts of his people who took to worship him as their true King and Hero. Even today, people worship the very place where he used to sit under a canopy in an open Durbar during the puja festivities at the Devighara in Asargunj.[16]
One cannot forget the services of Kumar Krishnanand Sinha towards the Hindi, Maithili and the Sanskrit language. In order to compensate the absence of any literary magazine in the province, he established a printing press called ‘Sri Mithila Press’ at Sultanganj and started the publication of the monthly “Ganga”. This magazine flourished under the able editorship of Ramgovind Trivedi, Pandit Gaurinath Jha and Shivpujan Sahay. Ganga found nation-wide acclaim for its archeological issue which was brought out under the editor-ship of Acharya Narendradeo and Tripitakacharya Rahul Sankrityayan. Some other magazines published under his patronage were the weekly “Haldhar” in Hindi and “Mithila-mitra” in Maithili. He also published the “Hindibhasya” of the “Rigveda”.
He donated a couple of water-sprinkling vehicles to the municipality of Bhagalpur and thus provided for the convenience of the dwellers of the city. He also gifted a house (Krishnavati[17]-sadan) to the Pandaa of Deoghar to be used as a lodge for the Piligrims.
He opened K.N. & S.M. H.E. School at Sultanganj and ran it, mostly at his own cost.
But Kumar Krishnand Sinha was very poor at managing his financial affairs. He was unable to strike a balance between his income and expenditure. As a result, he contracted heavy loans. At one point of time, he even considered the idea of offering his share in the estate to be managed by the Court of Wards. On 6.4.1935 Kumar Krishnanand Sinha gave his proprietory as well as lease-hold share of the Raj, in usufructuary mortgage to Kumar Ramanand Sinha but this was later cancelled by the mutual consent of Kumar Krishannand, Rani Ramavati and Rani Rameshwari on 30.11.1940 by virtue of a deed of family settlement.
Kumar Krishnanand Sinha died in 1958.

[1] Conferred by Vishweswar Kala Niketan, Sarisab, Darbhanga.
[2] As addressed by Gajendra Narayan Singh in his book ‘Swar-Gandh’ Pg-142
[3] Pinakar jha came from the house of Kujauli-Bhakhrauli and Nirmala held the Paainj- Kamalnayan Pathak.
[4]Sitaram Jha, Kumar Jayanand Sinha, Saktinath Jha (Subrat), Shankaranand Singh, Suryanarayan Jha(Jittan), Girijanand Sinha, Udayanand Singh, Jayant chatterjee, Vandana Jha, Amar Nath Jha, Kaushal Kishore Dubey, Shyam Chaitanya Jha,Vijay Kumar Jha and Ram Sharan Sinha (Bhajananand).
[5] Govind Narayan belonged to Darihare-ratauli and Sati held the Paainj-Bholan Jha.
[6] Padmadutt jha came from the house of Sodarpur-Kanhauli and Rukmini held the high Paanji ‘Bhikhari Jha’
[7] Rani Kishori Devi belongs to the house of Digho-Sannahpur.
[8] The science block of the school has been constructed through the above mentioned donation but the institute has shown deplorable negligence in inscribing the name of Raja Kirtyanand Sinha in an incorrect way and failing to correct it even after several reminders.
[9] She was the daughter of Bhairav Jha of Sodarpur Kanhouli.
[10]A major portion of the architectural contributions of the bygone Zamindari period has faced natural decay due to lack of maintenance and care, all over the country. Yet, at many places they have been saved from going to ruins. The successors of Kumar Ramanand Sinha failed to keep intact the main palace buildings at Garh-Banaili. Had it been saved, it would stand today as a typical architectural example of the by gone era of History.
[11] This Paddhati was written by Kavya –Vyakaran-Tirtha, Sahitya-Shiromani, Pandit Taracharan of Mangrauni with the help of Mahamahopaddhyaya Vyakaranaacharya Panditpravar Sasinath and Mahamahopaddhyaya Jyotishaacharya Panditpravar Murlidhar.
[12] Later named ‘Rani Rice and Oil Mills’
[13] An industrial site belonging to the still exists at Garh-Banaili as a rememberance of the above mentioned endeavor of The Kumar.
[14] Durgeshwar belonged to the Khandawala Mool
[15] Her actual name is Jagatmaya Devi.
[16]When he shifted to Sultangunj he took over the management of the Devighara of Deorhi Asargunj at Jelalabad, which had been established by Raja Bedanand Sinha and carried out the daily as well as the annual Durga-Puja with great fan-fare.

[17] Kumar Krishnanand Sinha was married to the daughter of Shrotriya Keval Krishna Thakur of Sarb-seema. She was named Rani Krishnavati Devi. Keval Krishna belonged to the house of Khandwala-Bhaur.

1 comment:

Pravin Kumar said...




MSc, LLB, PGD (Human Rights)