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Harishankar Parsai & Sombhu Mitra

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Harishankar Parsai & Sombhu Mitra

Harishankar Parsai

Born: 22 August 1924

Died: 10 August 1995

  • He was a Hindi writer.
  • He was a noted satirist and humorist of modern Hindi literature and is known for his simple and direct style.
  • He wrote vyangya (satire).
  • He was born in Jamani village near Itarsi in Hoshangabad district, Madhya Pradesh.
  • He completed his M.A. in Hindi from R.T.M. Nagpur University.
  • After pursuing writing along with his service for some time, he quit his job and took writing as a full-time career.
  • He settled in Jabalpur (M.P) and started a literature magazine called Vasudha.
  • Despite it being highly praised, he had to stop the magazine after the publication suffered economic losses.
  • Parsai died on 10 August 1995 in Jabalpur.
  • According to The Hindu, by the time of his death, Parsai had revolutionized the art of satire writing in Hindi.
  • He won Sahitya Akademi Award in 1982, for his satire, “Viklaang Shraddha Ka Daur” ‘विकलांग श्रद्धा का दौर’.

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Sombhu Mitra

Born: 22 August 1915

Died: 19 May 1997

  • He was an Indian film and stage actor, director, playwright, reciter and an Indian theatre personality, known especially for his involvement in Bengali theatre, where he is considered a pioneer.
  • He remained associated with the Indian People’s Theatre Association (IPTA) for a few years before founding the Bohurupee theatre group in Kolkata in 1948.
  • He is most noted for films like Dharti Ke Lal (1946), Jagte Raho (1956), and his production of Rakta Karabi based on Rabindranath Tagore’s play in 1954 and Chand Baniker Pala, his most noted play as a playwright.
  • In 1966, the Sangeet Natak Akademi awarded him with its highest award, the Sangeet Natak Akademi Fellowship for lifetime contribution, then in 1970, he was awarded the Padma Bhushan, India’s third-highest civilian honour, and in 1976 the Ramon Magsaysay Award.
  • His first appearance in Bengali theatre was in Rangmahal Theatre in north Kolkata in 1939, thereafter he moved to the Minerva, Natyaniketan and Srirangam theatres.
  • In 1943, he joined the Indian People’s Theatre Association (IPTA).
  • In 1944, several old theatrical conventions were broken when the play Nabanna written by Bijon Bhattacharya and co-directed by Sombhu Mitra for IPTA was staged.
  • In 1948, he formed a new theatre group, Bohurupee in Kolkata, which ushered the group-theatre movement in West Bengal.

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