Paschim Banga Prant Sanchalika of Rashtra Sevika Samiti, Pratima Basu, passed away on June 5 in Kolkata. She was 81. She was keeping unwell for a long time. Born on July 15, 1928 at Noaklali district of undivided Bengal, Pratima Di, as she was popularly known, had been a brilliant student from the very beginning. Brought up in the patriotic atmosphere (her uncle the late Phanindranath had been a revolutionary) she imbibed strong love for the motherland and a resolve to serve the people. After the Partition she settled in Kolkata.
After completing MA in 1952 she started her career in teaching and taught in many schools since 1960. She joined Hawrah Ramakrishna Adarsh Balika Vidyalaya as founder headmistress and served it for nearly 37 years. In 1959 she got married to Shri Kalidas Basu, an advocate and a senior RSS activist and also joined the Rashtra Sevika Samiti. She met Lakshmibai Kelkar and became the Prant Sanchalika of the Samiti. She travelled length and breadth of the State to expand the Samiti’s work and attracted the dedicated workers. Some of them include Prof. Basanti Bapat, Smt. Madhu Dhar, Smt. Kamal Chakraborty, Smt. Maya Mitra and many others. She continued to attend the meetings and functions in different parts of the State despite severe ailments. She wrote, compiled and edited many books in Bengali on the Samiti work. Most of these books earned appreciation from various corners of the world and are counted as great treasure to the Samiti’s literature. She was also influenced by the teachings of Sri Ramakrishna Paramhansa and became a devotee of the Ramakrishna Mission.
By Basudeb Pal