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Panchanan Singha Ray

Nadia, West Bengal

May 24, 2023 to May 24, 2024

Panchanan Singha Ray was born in 1906 in Harshuna village, located in the Kalna subdivision of the Burdwan district. His father, Joy Chandra Singha Ray, played a significant role in his upbringing. Upon arriving in Nabadwip, he came into contact with the leaders of the revolutionary Gupta Samiti. Subsequently, he relocated from Nabadwip to Bethuadahari.


In Bethuadahari, the Anushilon Samiti was actively engaged in their cause. He became a member of this organization, which operated clandestinely due to being declared enemies of the British rulers. The Satkar Samiti carried out social service activities outwardly while nurturing a spirit of violent revolution within. To clandestinely establish a violent revolutionary movement within Congress, he formed the "Satyabrati Dal."


Through this group, he covertly recruited individuals who believed in the use of violence. He emerged as one of the leaders of this movement. The group held secret meetings in a concealed room located in Nityananda Ball's shop known as "Swadeshi Bastra Bhandar." He was known to manufacture bombs on the premises of the "Shiv Mandir," situated opposite the shop. He was arrested in 1936 and transferred from Krishnanagar Jail to Dum Dum Special Jail. 


He played a significant and influential role in the "Non-Cooperation" and "Civil Disobedience" movement, serving as a source of motivation. One of his key endeavours was to propagate the "Khajna Bandh" movement throughout the district, aiming to boycott unjust taxes. However, his activism led to his arrest in 1932 during the "Chanderghat Political Conference" and the "Khajna Bandh" movement. He endured a six-month imprisonment in Krishnanagar jail.


Following his release, he was subjected to prolonged detention without trial under the Bengal Criminal Law Amendment-1930. In 1936, he was arrested once again under the same Act and spent an extended period behind bars in Krishnanagar jail. During the Quit India Movement of 1942, he assumed a prominent role, actively participating in anti-British activities such as picketing against excise duty and setting fire to the Muragachha railway station.


Upon India's independence in 1947, a significant portion of the Nadia district was temporarily included in Pakistan. Protests erupted under his leadership. When the station master raised the Pakistani flag at Bethuadahari railway station in the morning of August 15, 1947, he took the lead in lowering the Pakistani flag and hoisting the Indian national flag. He died in 1978 in Bethuadhari.

Source: Dipen Dutta, DRP, CCRT