Adhikari, Michael Sushil

Adhikari, Michael Sushil (1924-1997) poet and social worker, was born in Kathira village in barisal district on 14 January 1924, son of Reverend Bidhubhushan Adhikari. After initial schooling at a village pathshala, he studied at Bishnupur Mission School in West Bengal and later at BM College in Barisal.

While still a student, Adhikari did considerable social work among the Christian community in Barisal till 1952. In 1953, he left Barisal for khulna where he became involved in literary, cultural and development programmes. From 1968 to 1997 he was president of the Bangladesh Baptist Sangha and of the Bangladesh Church Council. He became state minister of the People's Republic of Bangladesh and later became an adviser on NGO Affairs. He was also president and vice-president of many social, literary, cultural and educational institutions at various times.

Shushil Adhikari came into close contact with poet jibanananda das. He started writing From the 1980s. Among his books are Binasher Srnkhale (1983), Pratyaksa Pratidin (1984), Niskriya Utkantha (1991), Nadir Kachhe Har Menechhi (1991), Janaxona Katha (1993), Nil Jalaraxi Tomake Dilam (1995), Reverend E L Winger (1995), etc. He edited Khristiya Pustika Sankalan (2 vols, 1995) and Musalmani Bangla-Engreji Abhidhan (1996). His literary achievements and social services brought him many awards including the Khulna Municipal Corporation Prize (1984), Kavitalap Padak (1986), Dishari Prize (1992), and National Book Centre Prize (1993). He died in Kolkata on 15 July 1997. [Sushanta Sarker]