Muzaffar Ahmed Memorial Prize
awarded to late Prof. Amalendu Dey
The Muzaffar Ahmed Memorial Prize for the year 2014 was conferred posthumously on the well-known historian Prof. Amalendu Dey on 5 July at a function held at PDG Bhavan Hall. Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee, President of the Muzaffar Ahmed Smriti Puraskar Committee, declared the name of the awardee which was selected by the Muzaffar Ahmed Smriti Puraskar Committee. The committee had selected Prof.Dey’s book “Sirajer Putra O Bangsadharder Sandhane” (In search of Siraj’s son and his Descendants) for the Award.
CPI(M) Polit Bureau Member & Leader of the opposition in West Bengal Assembly Dr. Surjya Kanta Mishra read the Citation at the function. Late Prof. Amalendu Dey’s son Amit Dey and daughter Tapti Dey received the Prize from Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee. The Award includes a Citation and a cheque of Rs.Ten Thousand.
Introducing the book, Mridul De said that the Battle of Palashi (1757) was an important & critical event in the history of Bengal, as well as India. But there are several missing links and gaps in the existing narrative of events. As we all know, Siraj-Ud-Daulah lost the battle. But after that what happened to his family? Where did they go? How and why did Mohanlal, the main lieutenant of Siraj, disappear after the battle? How is it that the son of the then king of Mymensingh resemble Siraj’s son?
While most have now forgotten this patriot, legendary historian and researcher Prof. Amalendu Dey was curious about this personality and the fate of his descendants. In the last stages of his life, he undertook painstaking research on all the gaps and mysteries that surrounded Siraj’s descendants. The results are described in this short 35-page book.
We learn from the book that some of Siraj’s descendants have not vanished but were part of Bengal’s history after the Battle of Palashi. Some of them sacrificed their life in the course of the Freedom Struggle as well as in the Communist Movements. They had broken through religious barriers, and displayed the same spontaneous character as their ancestor. Contributions of Mohanlal, the most trusted lieutenant of Siraj-Ud-Daulah has also been highlighted in this book. Prof. Dey’s research has opened the doors to researchers for further study on a wide spectrum of issues.