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Nobel Prize For Rabindranath Tagore In 1913- Some Untold Stories


Rabindranth Tagore was not the recommendation of the Nobel Committee

Rabindranath Tagore was the greatest of all great Bengali writers. But it is sad to note that the learned Bengali readers and writers kept many facts about Tagore’s winning of Nobel Prize in 1913 are kept secret. Some such facts are given below:

A. Rabindranath Tagore was more than many Nobel Laureates. But his winning of the Nobel Prize was a political consolation for the Hindu terrorist movements launched in Bengal in the early days of the 20th century.

B. Rabindranth Tagore was not the recommendation of the Nobel Committee. The Nobel Committee named somebody else. The name of Rabindranath Tagore was not even in the short list of the Nobel Committee.

C. Rabindranth Tagore was awarded the Nobel Prize neither as a Bengalee nor as an Indian. He was awarded the prize as an “Anglo-Indian”.

D. Rabindranth Tagore never made any so-called prize receiving speech.

E. Rabindranth Tagore only sent a two line prize acceptance message.

F. The prize was accepted by the British Ambassador and it was delivered to the poet in Calcutta.

G. It appears from the information, now available, that Rabindranath Tagore was awarded Nobel Prize in consideration of his successful attempt to intermingle the Western Christian-Hindu philosophy.

I shall very much welcome exact and objective reply from the esteemed readers of this Group.

I have been planning to publish a very small book on the subject: Nobel Prize for Rabindranath Tagore in 1913: some untold stories. All the points raised in my message are based on facts. But I would like to get more information on the subject. Help from others will greatly help in the publication of the book with more information.

However, for the information of all concerned, I would like to point out that Rabindranath was a Brahmo ( a reformed group of Brahmins of the so-called Hindu community of India).

The word ‘Hindu’ never existed to identify any religion before the emergence of the British Raj in India. It was invented by Raja Ram Mohan Roy in collaboration with the British colonial rulers. This the Britishers did with a view to getting the united massive force together against the defeated Muslim rulers of the then India.

As such, until the early last century, we find that 99% civil servants, lawyers, judges, engineers, doctors, professors etc. under the British Raj in India were from the Hindu community only. The fourth class employees like peons, messengers, bearers or guards are not included.

Brahmos allowed the conversion of even the low caste Sudras. But in fact, all Brahmos were Hindus. This was well understood by the British Rulers of India.

Rabindranath Tagore was not very vast in literary productions in the first decade of the last century. In fact, excepting the limited 250-copy English edition of Gitanjali, hardly there was any English version of Rabindranath Tagore’s other books. Not to speak of any Asian, until 1913 even any American was not awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature.


The word ‘Hindu’ was invented by Raja Ram Mohan Roy in collaboration with the British colonial rulers.

Rabindranath Tagore was in the spiritual lineage of Raja Ram Mohan Roy, Swami Vivekananda, Ramakrishna and others. In the lyrical lineage he was obviously reflecting D.L. Roy, Lalon Fakir, Atul Prasad Sen and others.

Rabindranath Tagore was a pro-British wealthy successor to the vast property left by his grand father Dwarakanath Tagore. In the first decade of the 20th Century he was the leading-most Bengalee intellectual friend of the British Rulers in India.

Had there been no Khudiram Bose or ‘Terrorist Movement’, perhaps there would have been no Nobel Prize for Rabindranath Tagore

During the last decades of the 19th century and in the early 20th century there were popular uprisings, known as the ‘Terroist Movement’ in Bengal. Khudiram Bose was young recruit by such leaders of ‘Terroist Movement’ in Bengal. The British Rulers were very much disturbed by the widespread activities of the volunteers of ‘Terroist Movement’. They needed to pacify the Bengalees. Nobel Prize for Rabindranath Tagore was an attempt in that direction.


Rabindranath Tagore's Nobel Prize Medal

Rabindranath Tagore was not known to the West in the first decade of the 20th century; hardly any body could have had access to his English edition of Gitanjali; this is obvious from the fact that Rabindranath Tagore was named in the short list of the Nobel Committee for the award of the Nobel Prize for literature in 1913. It was said that Rabindranath Tagore was known to the Swedish Academy as an ‘Anglo-Indian poet’ and not either as an Indian or as a Bengalee.

In addition, Rabindranath Tagore did not visit Sweden or Norway before or after being awarded the Nobel Prize. The British Ambassador received the prize for and on behalf of Rabindranath Tagore and it was confidentially delivered to Rabindranath Tagore at his Jorasanko residence in Calcutta.
Had there been no Khudiram Bose or ‘Terrorist Movement’, perhaps there would have been no Nobel Prize for Rabindranath Tagore. Even hundreds of Gitanjali could never open the passage of Nobel Prize for Rabindranath Tagore for Literature in 1913.

Of course, the high diplomatic circles and political decision makers in London did not like to take any risk and responsibilities and they decided, more or less during the same period, to shift the capital of the British Raj from Calcutta to New Delhi in 1911.

A.B.M. Shamsud Doulah
(Advocate, Supreme Court of Bangladesh &
formerly Assistant Professor of English in
Jagannath College, Dhaka)
P.O. 351, Dhaka-1000

Email: shamsuddoulah@yahoo.com

23 Responses

  1. you are a fuck face muslim looser. Its a relief that bangladesh is not with Bengal any more..U all Osama lickers understand only one thing and that is being fanatic about your religion…What can insects like you ever understand the greatness of Tagore, Vivekananda and such pioneers….As long as you can munch on beef and lust for 70 Virgins to screw in heaven and keep condemning anything that is not Islam , what else is the purpose of shit worms like you to live in this planet?

    Invent your own sick theories and conspiracy ideas , the whole world spits and laughs at Bangladeshis and no wonder why bangladesh is what it is today — a garbage of fanatics,who sadly cant even call them bengalis because it would sound “Hindu” to them…mother fuckers.

  2. Hey Porki,

    Had it not been for India, where would Bangladesh been today? A thrown out dumping ground for the Pakis , masturbating their vile on you….Imagine 1971 and be grateful to India you pigs …or maybe you all enjoyed that rape and blood bath at the hands of Pakis your blood brothers…

    Oh yes coming to terrorists, if Khudiram is a terrorist should we not call those young guys who gave their lives for Bengali language at the heart of Bangladesh…as terrorists too?

    The biggest enemies of Bengalis are Bengalis themselves…FIrst they divided on religion and now they are divided by thousands of other reasons and pigs like you are a good contributor to this.

  3. Mr. Partha and Mr. K. Bhatts replies well speak of the sad mental developments of the Indian Hindu Bengalees.

    I am sorry to have hurt you. But I challenge if you can really disprove my comments on Rabindranath Tagore. Come up as educated persons.

    However, thank you for your response!

    A.B.M. Shamsud Doulah

    • You seem to be an educated man but your ignorance, particularly about the greatest poet in your own mother tongue, is appalling. You may like to read about the award in boloji.com. You also present yourself here as fanatically communal. Do you know originally you were a Hindu? Someone among your forefathers got converted to Islam.

    • Sir, I regret about the way other Bengalis have replied to you. As you mentioned in your article that some of the facts are hidden about Tagore, yes that is very true. We are taught in books about Tagore such a way, from our childhood, that our mind set becomes very much inclined to him and we bengalis consider him almost like god. Recently I came across an article in some social media and then only I thought in a different way about tagore. I would like to add, with out intending to hurt any, what is the meaning of National anthem janagana mana? Who is the Adhinayaka in this song? I came to know that Tagore wrote this song to greet a British ambassador or then king who came to india and being happy after hearing this song decided, upon returning to Britain, about the nobel award for Tagore. He was the head of Nobel committee, then. There are more hurting facts about Tagore but i dont want to take that pain to put it here, neither want to hurt others. I would suggest my brothers to take this just as a gossip but investigate at the back ground.

  4. So what if nobel prize was not given to him how does it change its status because he was born great and will continue to be great in the heart of every indians to quote your kobi kazi najrul”aaj bangla jane bangla ki haraieche:on the eve of his death and to quote einstien “ai prithibi te na kokhono emon bektitto jonmo niyeche na jonmo nebe”

  5. To: Mr. Partha, Mr. Bhatt and To Mr. Bose and like others:

    Poetry, poetry, and poetry! Remember as civilization advances, the values and impact of poetry also necessarily declines. Poetry is also a psychiatric factor, so common with the less educated and aboriginals.

    When I was attending Presidency College in Calcutta, at a Coffee House gossiping one Mr. Sharma, a student from U.P. annoying us observed: What you talk of Rabindranath! If you translate the first line from Gitanjali “Aamaar maatha noto korey dao tomar charantoley”, he said sarcastically quoting the words into Hindi as: “Patak dey merey sar terey taang par”. Such observations are never correct.

    Not to speak of all Tagore literature, hardly the people outside West Bengal and and the non-Bengalees read Rabindranath Tagore today.
    His writings are not there in the school and college texts among the non-Bengalee Indians. Even most of the Indians do not know his “Janagana manana jayahe Bharat bhagya bidhaata…” Even more Indians do not understand it. It is like Pakistani National Song “Pak sarzamin shad baad …” in the then East Pakistan.

    To speak the truth, Rabindranath Tagore is still remembered widely among the Bengalees only because he was awarded the 1913 Nobel Prize for literature.

    But few people know that it was a political reward!

    A.B.M. Shamsud Doulah

    Email: shamsuddoulah@yahoo.com

  6. There is a political aspect attached to all nobel prizes. Having said this, you can not just ignore the talent, thoughts and philisophy of RNT. Very few poeple in the history of mankind can measure up. BTW, Mohandas Gandhi never got Noble prize and is the most respected persona from Indian sub-continet globally. So, if you are great, prizes do not matter…RNT was gr8 and he got the prize too. It is alleged that some Bangladeshi smugglers stole it from Shantiniketan.

  7. Ravindranath Tagore is one of the greatest Indians…Period! Please don’t insult people whom you are not intellectually capable of comprehending. One of my advise to you would be to concentrate on using your energy positively to help your country progress instead of trying to defame a saint and hurting the sentiments of a billion people. Bangladesh is way behind India, you as a writer should concentrate on educating you fellowmen. Try to teach them technology or the goodness of your religion and not throw mud in the dark. Do you even have the brain to understand Gitanjali?? It is taught in graduate schools in the US and there are subjects on Ravindranath Tagore, Mahatma Gandi and so on.

    I am an Indian working in the US and have used most of my salary to open schools in my village in UP, India. Sadly none of the Bangladeshis or Pakistanis I know do such things. Hope you people change your attitudes from hating other religions/countries and use that energy to help your nation/fellowmen progress.

    Granted India also have many people like you, but it also has a far greater number of progressive people who help society instead of doing worthless activities! Our middleclass exceeds entire US population and we have the most number of millionaires. We produce the most number of intellectuals after China. Goto anywhere in the world and you will find Indians doing well of. US grad schools have 13% Indians! Whereas your country (the most densely populated country in the world) produces only a fraction of contributors. It just sad. Please change your ideology in life. Do good and good things will happen to you. Its called Karma and its a Hindu fundamental concept which the west readily caught on (because they are intelligent and open).

  8. Your forum can do with more such posts and lesser like Let`s Eliminate Indian Terrorists in Bangladesh – which is so patently silly. Ambitious governments the world over make mistakes – and in today’s cult of Republican Democracy, elected dictators have few checks on power.

    Having said that, the Indian govt. in the last 65 years, has delivered much to India, the world – and to Bangladesh.

    There are good reasons for Bangladesh to work with India – unlike Pakistan, which believes that there are good reasons to work against India.

    This is a rather dispassionate post on the politics behind Rabindranath Tagore’s (RNT) Nobel Prize.

    A few weak points: –

    1. Tagore’s open and organized opposition of the British during the partition of Bengal give us little reason to doubt his nationalism or loyalty to India.

    2. Your point about RNT’s work being being unknown outside Bengal is diluted by the fact poetry in any language has died in the last 100 years – after the birth of the novel, according to Marshal McLuhan. Regardless of merit. Is there any poet whose work is ‘known’ after 1910. A few lines excepted, no poet has achieved recognition in 20th century.

    3. The favorite conspiracy story in India is that RN Tagore wrote Jana Gana Mana – India National Anthem, as homage to King George. Defenders of RNT believe that it could be also be read in that manner.

    4. The fact that RNT never went to Oslo to accept the prize could have well been engineered by the British – from the fear that that RNT may make some damaging statement in that forum. So no marks to you 🙂 for this piece of weak logic.

    Some outstanding observations

    1. Your observation that American won Nobel Prizes after RNT – implies that they were ‘allowed’ to win the Nobel prizes, makes sense. The award of the Nobel prize to Obama so soon after he became the President supports your thesis of politics behind the Nobel. It makes me happy that Gandhiji ‘never’ won the Nobel Prize. A Nobel Prize for Gandhiji would have been a slur against Gandhiji’s fair memory.

    2. Your other observation which makes eminent sense is the real reasons to shift the British Raj capital from Kolkatta to Nai Dilli was the ‘terrorist’ activities – especially after the partition of Bengal. Of course, Bagha Jatin, Swami Aurobindo had been ‘terrorists’ who made the British nervous is worth mentioning. The activities of Khudiram Bose will make any Indian and a Bengali proud.

    3. Your point about the ‘creation’ of a ‘Hindu’ identity by the Raja Ram Mohun Roy+British is meritorious – but unsubstantiated. If you can add a few links, events, dates, it would make for an excellent contribution to ‘Hindu’ historiography.

    4. Your observation on British objective ‘to intermingle the Christian-Hindu philosophy’ has significant merit. India has a long tradition in this – with Guru Nanak Dev being ahead of the pack. Sikhism blunted the proselytizing zeal of Islamic rulers earlier. British tried for some time to show that they were ‘Aryan’ brothers, who were meeting again. Gandhiji himself used Christian theological arguments to dilute the moral standing of the British Raj.

    No merit or demerit to RNT for using this tool.

  9. Dear Shamsud,

    Recently I came across few facts which created doubts in my mind about nobel prize to Tagore. I now believe it was given to him as some kind of appeasement or as a trade off. I did not find anything worthwhile in Gitanjali for which such prize would be given. Even the song (jana Mana Gana …) written by him was merely in praise of british king George V on his visit which was first time sung for G-V. I believe this should be viewed as antinational instead it is now national anthem of India. If you prefer I will post you with facts.

    Please do not get bogged down with comments of narrow minded orthodox people. Bring out the truth.

    Arvind Bimbisariye, National Capital Region, India. Cell-9899789057. E-mail- bimbisariyea@indianoil.in

    • Hello Mr. narrow-minded & ultra-orthodox Arvind ,
      if u did not find anything worthwhile in Gitanjali, then its your lack of depth of philosophical feelings, no doubt . Nobel prize can just be a minor & unimportant scale to measure RN’s literary excellence. I also condemn your comment ‘antinational’ which you did for India’s national .anthem . RN did not composed it to praise the king George V. I suggest you to read more on this matter & not to post such silly comments publicly for it would only proof your foolishness . I demand your ‘facts’ on the relations between ‘Janagana…..’ & Gerge V. Hope, you will enlighten yourself with the light of true knowledge .
      Bodhisattwa Sinha , Bengal

    • Arvind – A little learning is a dangerous thing. The song was composed and sung for the first time in a conference of the Indian National Congress held in Calcutta and Mahatma Gandhi himself was present in that conference. Do you know your father’s name? Ask your mother to know who your father is. Because it is she who knows it. Do you think your friend Shamsud knows it?






  10. Dear Shamshud!
    Why dont you attempt an anthem for your country, that still sings “Aamar Shonar Bangla”…! I hope you and people like you in Bangladesh know the name of the poet…If not..google it..
    And, if your anthem is selected, you may get next Nobel Prize in literature…
    All the best!

  11. All the people engaged in this discussion are passing their time, me too. Rabindranath Tagore is a light which enlightening everything till today. And it he will be enlightening in the coming future too. Some people engage themselves in ugly matters. They will never find the white board but the black dot always. Rabindranath Tagore is known to people for what he has given, not for what he has taken. We are pleased with what we have received from him. Everything is covered by his works he did. Some one said ” Rabi roshmi probesh kore nai emon kono kshetra nai”. The people who criticize him have got the ability to think from him. He said ” Koria bikrito mukh, chulkaite boro sukh”. It is obvious that there would be some people who will have “Chulkani” and doing that they will show their “Bikrito mukh”. We are happy what we have got and continue to get the fragrance. Thanks.

  12. Here is a Tagore poem in my translation which all the participants in this discussion may like to read and try to understand its meaning and message.


    Having suffered a lot
    Those whose minds are wrought
    The base of whose existence becomes shaky
    Those who are listless
    Let them listen –
    Don’t ever forget yourselves.
    Let you meet every day
    Those who have won over death
    Those who have kept their torch aflame
    Above whatever is mean and small
    If you make them dwarf
    The sin of their disrespect
    Will make you dwarf as well
    And you will suffer that indignity forever.
    Make yourselves honourable
    Honouring them
    In the world
    Those who are memorable men.
    Transcreation of poem 18 from the collection Janmadine by Rabindranath Tagore.


    UNESCO declared 2011 as the year of Rabindranath Tagore and his 150th birth anniversary were celebrated all across the globe including Germany, Japan, Italy, Russia and China. Bangladesh and India had arranged a year-long joint commemorative programmes both at government and non-governmental levels. However, little was heard from Pakistan.

    Ironically, Tagore’s writing became an indicator of tolerance of a society. Tagore’s writings were banned and burned in Nazi-occupied Europe, Fascist Italy and Imperial Japan. Tagore was once banned in Communist Russia and China. Tagore became a target from all directions in pre-1971 Pakistan. Finally in 1971, Tagore became a matter of ‘life and death’ in Pakistan Army occupied Bangladesh. Pakistan Army’s fury knew no bound when the Bangladesh (Mujib Nagar) Government-in-Exile adopted ‘Amar Sonar Bangla’ as the National Anthem of Bangladesh in May 1971. Tagore experts at Universities were selectively targeted and killed by the Pakistan Army and Al-Badr Killing Squads. I remember my mother tore pages from a thick book and threw into oven fire during a house to house search in old-Dhaka city by Pakistan Army (probably October/November 1971) — a (Tagore’s) volume was mistakenly not destroyed till then.

    State-sponsor manipulation of religion is nothing new in Pakistan. But during 1980?s the military rulers in Pakistan adopted a US plan funded (mainly) by Saudi Arabia — the radicalisation of the society and defence forces (to subdue the communist Russia in Afghanistan and neighbouring countries). Over the years radical and militant ideas rooted deeply in Pakistan society. Civil society, media and intellectuals seems cowed into submission and radical jihadist become uncontrollable for its creators. Nuclear armed Pakistan’s trajectory is now defined by the radicals. This cause panic in US and rest of the world. Now the US has came up with ‘de-radicalisation’ plan which include the promotion of Sufism (Sufi teachings, Sufi music, Sufi Universities etc.). Many doubt if ‘Sufi therapy’ would work for Pakistan at this late stage but there is no harm in trying it. The core of Sufism — peace, love, tolerance, enlightenment — and Tagore’s philosophy are essentially the same. Like the Sufis, Tagore has message for the soul.

    So, I request the Bangladesh and Indian governments and non-governmental cultural organizations to include Pakistan in their joint celebrations of Rabindranath Tagore’s 150th birth anniversary and beyond.

    -M. Emad

  14. Dear Writer,

    First of all I would like to thank you for such information which has been untold for decades or so. But I dont know how to assist you to make you more aware about the Noble Prizeis and Tagore. Well dont wish to sound robust but a friendly advice, kindly go through the books written by Dr. Ratna Roy and Prabhat Kumar Mukhopadhyay. You may also consult Dr. P.N.Bisi’s notes on Tagore. Hope next time will get more important information and untold facts from you regarding this matter.

    Thanking you in advance by anticipating your kindness and generosity and patient to read my mail.


    Biswajit Chakraborty

  15. A typical low IQ Muslim scumbag has created this forum.

    First Rabindranath was a Brahmin from Bengal and in 1913 he was nominated by 1 person but there were others who were nominated by 2 person.But the prize ultimately went to Tagore.

    There are 2 other Bengali Brahmin from India has done Nobel prize worthy work.One is Physician Subhas Mukhopadhyay who created test tube baby in 1978 for which Nobel prize was awarded in 2010.But Dr.Mukhopadhyay died in 1981.The third one is Amartya Sen.

    There are 200 million Bengali Muslim scumbags,but except one peace prize you have done nothing.

  16. Bengali Brahmin/Baidya Brahmin have only 2-2.5 million population in India and 3 Nobel prize worth work came from here.

    In USA Bengali Brahmins have 5000 population and from that population we have 1200 patents which is best stat in the world.Also Bengali Brahmins have won 2 Pulitzer prize and 14 Grammy awards in USA.

    You are saying that British helped Bengali Brahmins and other upper caste,but then how Bengali Brahmins are most successful immigrant in USA when British has left in 1947.That’s it.

  17. I think it is wrong to use british mind set on Khudiram bose. Khudiram and Aurbindo were freedom fighters and you should not use that label as ‘terrorist”
    Hindus were opted for British administration was the main reason of Hindus background, openness, ability to communicate, and majority of population. at that time not many muslim had background to deal with British mindset.
    How many Muslim scientist or educatinalist you or we had in 18 and 19 th century?
    British used Muslim to divide india and still doing the same by papering Bangalee muslim .

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