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Biography of Late Maharaj Kumar Priyabarta Singh

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 Maharaj Kumar Priyabarta Singh
Maharaj Kumar Priyabarta Singh



Maharaj Kumar Priyabarta Singh is the second son of Late Maharaj Churachand Singh, KCSI, CBE and Rani Chingakham Ningol Shyamasakhi Devi, born on February 17, 1911.

Priyabarta had his schooling at Rajkumar College, Raipur, Mount Pleasant School at Christ Church near Bournemouth in England and did his graduation at Allahabad University.

During his school days at Rajkumar College, he learnt Fine Arts from Gopal Krishna Kanetkar, an alumnus of JJ School of Arts and fine arts became his enduring hobby.

He is one of the makers of modern Manipur, a human 1st and social worker par eminence devoting his life for the cause of social harmony.

After his graduation, he was selected as a distinguished Member of the Manipur State Darbar (1963-1941). During this period he worked equality, even visiting the homes of Yaithibis, which were regarded as third class citizens.

At the outbreak of Second World War, he joined the Indian Army in 1942 and after getting the King's Commission was posted with the 2nd Assam Rifles after his training. He led the Assam regiment Contingent in the 2nd World War Victory Parade in Delhi in March, 1946.

But soon, he had to leave the Army to take up important administrative assignment in Manipur.

Priyabrata was chosen to head the Manipur State Council as Chief Minister during the interim period from August 14, 1947 till October 7, 1948 and again as Chief Minsiter of the Manipur Legislative Assembly till October 15, 1949 when Manipur was merged with the Union of India.

He played a pioneering role in the setting up of a viable infrastructure for the new born state. Under his leadership, Manipur State Bank, Manipur State Transport, Manipur Rifles, DM College, etc were established.

Later during the early eighties as Advisor to the Governor, he was closely associated with the diverse phases of reconstruction and policy making in the highest level.

 An art work by  Maharaj Kumar Priyabarta Singh
An art work by Maharaj Kumar Priyabarta Singh



He was associated with Bharat Sevak Samaj in the sixties as Chairman and many road constructions in the hill areas were taken up.

With an unfailing eye for indigenous talents, he set up a Spinning Mill with an installed capacity of 26,000 spindles. It was, however, as a social worker and an educationist that he finally emerged as a pillar of dedication.

He was the main force of inspration behind all new experiments in the field of higher education, the dividends being the Regional Medical College (now Regional Institute of Medical Sciences), Manipur State Kala Akademi, Manipur Agricultural College (now Central Agricultural University), Manipur University, etc.

He was a lover of peace and devoted his life tirelessly to bring harmony in the life of the people of the North East. He led the Manipur Cultural Integration till his death and under his organisation he tried to bring understanding between the hill and the valley.

He became a representative and a symbol of the unity among the people of Manipur. During the late seventies he was the Liaison Officer of the Peace Camps of the surrendered Naga National Workers.

He was a founder member of Arts Society Manipur and his expression of creative talents is a part of the history of fine arts movement in Manipur.

In recognition of his talent, he represented Manipur in the Lalit Kala Akademi for a term of three years.

He started shooting shooting documenting Manipur life with an 8 mm camera from 1936. He is a naturalist and environmentalist and worked for proper forest cover of the state.

Besides, he introduced some economically viable species in Manipur like sandalwood, Eucalyptus, Sal, etc. He is also prolific in his writing and nad to his credit about 100 articles on different aspects of life of Manipur.

Manipur University conferred him with D. Litt (honoriscausa) on 14th May, 1988 in recognition of his contribution to Manipur Society.

Besides, he was conferred with Shilpabhusan and Shri Mad Paramhans Swami Jogendrananda Giri Memorial Award, Thoibi Award, SN Chand Memorial Award, etc.

He left for his heavenly abode at his residence in Palace Compound which he called Kombirei House on 29th October, 2005.


* Daniel Chanbungbam provided this information for e-pao.net
This article was posted on March 01 2019.


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