Gangopadhyay, Narayan(1918-1970) writer, poet, essayist, was born at Baliadingi in dinajpur on 4 February 1918, son of Pramathanath Gangopadhyay. Named Taraknath Gangopadhyay, he took up 'Narayan' as his penname. His forefathers lived at Nalchira of Basudebpur in barisal district.
Narayan Gangopadhyay matriculated from Dinajpur Zila School in 1933. He then took admission at rajendra college in faridpur but had to leave the town on 1 May 1935 on political grounds. He was interned as a 'revolutionary suspect' and could not appear in the college examinations. Later he took admission in the second year at bm college in Barisal and passed Intermediate Arts (IA) as a non-collegiate candidate in 1936. He passed the Bachelor of Arts with distinction from the same college in 1938. In 1941, he completed the MA from Calcutta University, receiving the Brahmamayee Gold Medal for his outstanding results. He earned DPhil from the same university in 1960.
Narayan Gangopadhyay taught at a number of colleges, including Jalpaiguri College (1942-45) and the City College (1945-1955). He started teaching at Calcutta University in 1956.
Narayan Gangopadhyay began writing poetry while still a student. In due course he became famous for his short stories, novels, plays etc. His novels include Upanibesh (3 volumes, 1944-1947), Samrat O Shresthi (1944), Mandramukhar (1945), Shilalipi (1949), Lalmati (1951), Krishnapaksa (1951), Baitalik (1955), and Asidhara (1957). His volumes of short stories include Trophy (1949), Bitangsa, Janmantar, Bhabgabandar, Duhshasan, Bhatiyali (1957), Exhibition, Chhayatari, Ghurni, and Aleyar Rat. Among his other works are several volumes of essays: Sahitya O Sahityik, Sahitye Chhotagalpa (1955), Kathakobid Rabindranath (1965), and Chhotagalper Simarekha (1969). He also wrote stories for children, among them, Saptakanda, Andhakarer Agantuk, Chotader Shrestha Galpa (1952), Chhutir Akash, Khushir Hawa, Jhau Banglor Rahasya, Pavchananer Hati, Pataldabgar Tenida, Galpa Bali Galpa Shona, Abyartha Laksyabhed, Tenidar Abhiyan (1941). Bhadate Chai and Agantuk were two of his widely acclaimed plays. He also wrote a few screenplays and songs for films and gramophone records.
Narayan Gangopadhyay was a regular contributor to Shanibarer Chithi. Towards the end of his life, he used to write regularly for the weekly Desh under the pen name 'Sunanda'. His writings are informed by his historical sense and patriotic feelings as well as his love for the nature of Bengal. His short stories were highly acclaimed, and he was awarded the Ananda Award (1946) in recognition of his contribution to bangla literature. The weekly Basumati accorded him a reception in 1968.
Narayan Gangopadhyay died on 6 November 1970 in Kolkata. [Siddiqa Mahmuda]