Kolkata: Started with the business of plastic, 99 year old Sudhanshu Biswas is now talk of the town. Two unsung heroes who served the poor, set up free schools and popularized tribal arts globally of Bengal have been conferred the Padma Shri award 2018- the highest civilian award of the country. One is Sudhanshu Biswas and other is Subhasini Mistry.
West Bengal’s Sudhanshu Biswas, a 99-year-old freedom fighter who serves poor, runs school and orphanages and set up free school for poor, is also among the winners. Biswas seems to defy age, clad in a white ganji (vest) and dhoti, a white cap perched on his head. But don’t be fooled by his skinny frame and his walking stick.
He is indefatigable. he is away from the hustle and bustle of the city in the green environs of a village, which he has put indelibly on the philanthropic map of India. In the village Ramkrishnapur, South 24 Paraganas, West Bengal, around 35 from Kolkata, the nonagenarian runs a home, Sri Ramakrishna Sevashram, for destitute children and senior citizens.
Sudhanshu Biswas starts the dawn with prayer and ends the dusk with peace and asks the children to pipe down and offer prayers, before they eat, to Sri Ramakrishna, the 19th-century spiritual teacher of whose teachings he is a follower.
Sudhanshu Biswas was persecuted and jailed for his patriotism. After his release, he moved to a place near the Sunderbans where he started a business in plastics. he was deeply moved by the plight of abandoned children whom he saw in enough numbers around him.
He then put his earnings into 17 homes for the poor and destitute in and around the Sunderbans, which are still operating. In the early days, he maintained them, but now they work on their own.
He who sees Siva in the poor, in the weak, and in the diseased and served the humanity. By all counts, this freedom fighter also true devotee and fighter of poorer.