Bharat Ratna Hariprasad Chaurasia & Bidhan Chandra Roy

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Bharat Ratna Hariprasad Chaurasia & Bidhan Chandra Roy

Bharat Ratna Hariprasad Chaurasia

Born: 1 July 1938

  • He is an Indian music director and classical flutist, who plays the bansuri, an Indian bamboo flute, in the Hindustani classical tradition.
  • He joined the All India Radio, Cuttack, Odisha in 1957 and worked as a composer and performer.
  • Much later, while working for All India Radio, he received guidance from the reclusive Annapurna Devi, daughter of Baba Allaudin Khan. She only agreed to teach him if he was willing to unlearn all that he had learned until then.
  • Another version is that she only agreed to teach him after he (of his own) took the decision to switch from right-handed to left-handed playing to show her his commitment.
  • In any case he plays left-handed to this day.
  • His nephew and pupil Rakesh Chaurasia is a highly accomplished flutist now and has been performing globally with such eminent maestros as Ustad Zakir Hussain.
  • He serves as the artistic director of the World Music Department at the Rotterdam Music Conservatory in the Netherlands.
  • He was also the founder of the Vrindavan Gurukul in Mumbai (opened 2006) and Vrindavan Gurukul in Bhubaneshwar (opened 2010).
  • Both of these institutes are schools dedicated to training students in bansuri in the Guru-shishya tradition.

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Bidhan Chandra Roy

Born: 1 July 1882

Died: 1 July 1962

  • He was an eminent Indian physician, educationist, philanthropist, freedom fighter and politician who served as the Chief Minister of West Bengal from 1948 until his death in 1962.
  • He is often considered the Maker of Modern West Bengal due to his key role in the founding of several institutions and five eminent cities, Durgapur, Kalyani, Bidhannagar, Ashokenagar and Habra.
  • He is one of the few people in history to have obtained F.R.C.S. and M.R.C.P. degrees simultaneously.
  • In India, the National Doctors’ Day is celebrated in his memory every year on 1 July.
  • He was awarded Bharat Ratna on 4 February 1961, India’s highest civilian honour.
  • He joined the Provincial Health Service.
  • He exhibited immense dedication and hard work, and would even serve as a nurse when necessary.
  • In his free time he practised privately, charging a nominal fee.
  • Following his return from England after post-graduation, he taught at the Calcutta Medical College, and later at the Campbell Medical School and the Carmichael Medical College.
  • He believed that swaraj (the call to action for India’s freedom) would remain a dream unless the people were healthy and strong in mind and body.
  • He made contributions to the organisation of medical education.
  • He played an important role in the establishment of the Jadavpur T.B. Hospital, Chittaranjan Seva Sadan, Kamala Nehru Memorial Hospital, Victoria Institution (college), and Chittaranjan Cancer Hospital.
  • The Chittaranjan Seva Sadan for women and children was opened in 1926.

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