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Datta, Kaminikumar


Datta, Kaminikumar (1878-1959) a lawyer and politician. Kaminikumar Datta hailed from Sreekail under Muradnagar upazila of Comilla district. Son of Krishnakumar Datta, the head pundit of Chittagong Government Collegiate High School, he was born on 25 June 1878. He passed the Entrance Examination from the Chittagong Government High School in 1894, graduated from the Calcutta Ripon College in 1898 and joined the Comilla District Bar in 1901 with a BL degree of the Calcutta University. For a short period he served as a Munsif and then joined the Comilla Bar and took up the legal profession again. He was enrolled as an Advocate of the Calcutta High Court in 1918.

Kaminikumar Datta belonged to the leftist group of politicians in the indian national congress. He took active part in the swadeshi, non-cooperation and civil disobedience movements. The police raided his house and imprisoned him several times for his anti-British activities.

Elected a member to the Bengal Legislative Council in 1937, Datta was the deputy leader of the Congress Parliamentary Party. He convened the All-India Peasants' Conference at Comilla in May 1938 and was the President of the Reception Committee. He also convened a conference of the All-Bengal and Assam Lawyers' Association in 1938 at Comilla. In 1939 he presided over the Conference of the All-Bengal and Assam Lawyers' Association held at Khulna. Datta was the President of the Tippera District Relief, Rescue and Rehabilitation Committee that was formed to quench the riots of Noakhali and Tippera districts.

After the partition of India in 1947, Kaminikumar Datta was a member of the Basic Principles Committee formed for making the first Constitution of Pakistan (1956). He was elected a member of the Provincial Legislative Assembly of East Pakistan in 1954. He was the Law Minister of the Pakistan central government from August 1955 to September 1956 in the cabinet of Chowdhury Muhammad Ali and represented Pakistan at the United Nations.

Kaminikumar Datta was connected with many social welfare organisations, including the 'Abhay-Ashram' of Comilla, established in 1923. He was a member of the Comilla District Board and the Chairman of the Comilla Municipality. He made contributions to the establishment of the Sreekail College founded by his younger brother. He turned his residence at Kandirpar in Comilla town in to a hostel for the female students and named it 'The Mrnalini Chhatri-Nibas' after his deceased wife Mrinalini Datta. He also donated all his landed property at Sreekail in favour of the local educational institutions founded by Datta brothers. Kaminikumar Datta died on 4 January 1959. [Muhammad Abdus Salam]