The mortals of Devdas

Print edition : January 09, 2015

Saratchandra Chattopadhyay, one of the first Bengali writers to grow rich on the earnings from his books. His stories remain popular still, in a vastly changed world. Photo: By Special Arrangement

The house of the writer's maternal uncle in Bhagalpur, Bihar, where he moved in 1893. Photo: By Special Arrangement

The tomb of Khanjar Beg at Bhagalpur which a young Saratchandra visited frequently with Dheeru. Photo: By Special Arrangement

Suchitra Sen as Paro and Dilip Kumar in the lead role in Bimal Roy's 1955 film "Devdas". The character of Paro is said to be modelled on Dheeru. Photo: THE HINDU ARCHIVES

An actual relationship in the writer’s youth may have produced the protagonists of Devdas, but they are, in the end, a metaphor for the human self stumbling through life.
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