Learning from my father
I remember my Dad as a stickler of right and wrong, discipline and very clean, willing to do anything to protest against any wrong doings and also an able Administrator. He retired as Joint Secretary, CSIR, Ministry of Science and Technology, Government of India. He actually had been one of the early employees of CSIR, when it was formed in 1943-44, with Shanti Swarup Bhatnagar as the first Director General. I remember my Dad telling us how proud he was to be working with Mr Bhatnagar.
My dad’s passion was creative writing and acting on stage. He involved himself in these forms of artistic pursuits as a hobby. As we grew, we saw Dad in many avatars. Firstly, when we were young, he shifted his focus onto us and wrote poems for us. He was the first person to translate English Nursery Rhymes into Bengali for us. This was called ‘BILITI CHHARA,’ this was in the 1960s. It was a runaway success. This book found place in almost every educated middle- class Bengali homes, bought by young parents for their kids and it became very popular. We all grew up listening to the rhymes of:
JJack Jill dui jon, haath dhorey bhai bon……
(Bengali version of popular nursery rhymes Jack & Jill)
When we grew, he matched his writings with my brother and me, and he kept writing historical, scientific, educational stories on great people………all on verses/poems and for young school going boys/girls. We grew up listening to his poems. He was proud to publish them and came out with books, first for children, SHARODIYA CHHARA, GHOOM BHANGANEE CHHARA, BIGYANER CHHARA, CHHORAATE RAMAYAN, then onto the lives of great saints, like GADADHAR, MA-MONI, EK JE CHHILO RAJA. These were few of his works. My Dad also wrote a number of contemporary dramas, short stories, kabya sangeet, apart from poems.
Looking back and seeing today’s world, through my Dad’s eyes, and then putting my cap on top of it, I find this balancing of mind, in most of us is a basic need. A strong Administrative, a Social fight of right or wrong, truthful or corrupt world, society, politics etc. on one side and the creative skills and talents, coming out through his poetry on the other. This MIX is phenomenal. Also, this mix is inherent in many of us. We keep adjusting and balancing ourselves, some use it as a stress buster, some are more passionate to pursue and get happiness and bliss along that creative journey. Maybe a confusion comes, when you do both together in mid-career. Can you sustain both? I don’t know. For me the proliferation of my creative instincts happened in two clear ways:
1.Developing our company strategies, brands, positioning, culture of the organisation, mixing work with some activities in my career days.
2.When you get professionally less active, then your inner talents, skills, creativity, which were suppressed due to work or business pressures start emerging and take shape. Like my entire mind in the creative space, I have tried to capture, in my life’s journey in, first my Memoire, I DID IT MY WAY and then through my web portal www.bdgfoundation.org to communicate to the outside world, through my Blogs, My Stories, and host of my Philanthropic work through Calcutta Broadway and Kalyani Foundation and my startup investments via BDG Angels. This mix I saw it in my Dad. And I would like to give a lot of credit to my Dad, for this skill of mine, factoring the period and time. For me, as long as my thoughts can show directions to the middle-class youth and the aspiring entrepreneur, I will be happy.
I have always felt about my Dad, that, I ponder whether he was a better Poet or a better Administrator. People would say perhaps similar things about me, time will tell. But one thing is for sure. My creative expressions and journey has added a lot of value and extension of my active life through my intellect and I will most certainly credit my Dad for that.
Baba, Pronaam nio
If you wish to read more inspirational blogs by Bikram Dasgupta or get in touch with him, then push the Like button.