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The Life Of Padma Shree Chittu Tudu

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Among the notable writers of Santali literature, Chittu Tudu is well known. He was born on 31 December, 1929, in the village of Sahu Pokhar in the Banka district of Bihar. This village is located about 1 km west from Shyambazar, 16 kms south of Hansdiha (a small town of Jharkhand) and 12 kms north from Mandar Bounsi on Bhagalpur-Dumka road. Sahu Pokhar is mainly a santal populated village. More than 70 santal families reside there.

His father’s name was Dina Tudu and his mother’s name was Jhinjhirmuni Tudu (Murmu). His parents died in his childhood. He was brought up under the guidance of his paternal uncle Fate Tudu. He got motherhood from his grandmother, who worked hard to educate him. He also a lot of help from his maternal uncle Salma Murmu.

He received his education from the village school. When he was a student, his soul cried for the native land. He always thought about how India will be free from the grip of British rule. This thought took away his sleep. He met with freedom fighters of Santhal Pargana and Bhagalpur. Then he joined Santhal Pargana Congress committee where he came in contact with freedom fighter Lal Baba (Lal Hembrom) and Rashtrakavi (national poet) Ramdhari Singh Dinkar. He worked as an informer for freedom fighters. He sent the messages of freedom fighters among the tribal people of Bhagalpur and Santhal Pargana.

He passed his matriculation in 1948. Due to poor economic condition of his family and the advice of Rashtrakavi Ramdhari Singh he joined as publicity organiser in the Department of Information and Public Relations of the Bihar Government after passing matriculation. In the same year, he got married to Rani Murmu, resident of Sakari village which located in Poreyahat Block of Godda district of Jharkhand.

From 1956 to 1958 he worked as a Santali language organiser in Gitinatya branch of the department. According to the rule of government job and his eligibility, he got a promotion in 1959 as the District Information and Public Relations Officer. In 1977, again he got promoted to Deputy Director of Information and Public Relations. In 1984 he was promoted to Joint Director of Information and Public Relations.

During his job period, he was posted in various places in Bihar and Jharkhand: Bhagalpur, Pakur, Chaibasa, Daltonganj and Ranchi. As per the rule of Government, he retired from the Information and Public Relations Department on 31 December, 1987. From 1976 to 1986 he led the Adibasi Loknartak Dal in the main Republic Day celebrations in New Delhi.

He got various awards and honours from then Prime Minister and President. Although he had a matriculate, he was well versed in English, Hindi, Bengali and Indigenous languages. He was a noted writer, lyricist and translator. He wrote many books in Hindi and Santali languages. His writings are:

  • Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru Ki Jiwani
  • Jawai Dhuti
  • Sone Ki Sikri Rupa Ki Nathiya
  • Translated the Hindi drama Naye Naye Rasta into Santali
  • Santali Lokgiti Mai Mandar Parbat
  • Jawai Bahu Horo Serenj
  • Milwa Gate Pocket Puthi, etc.

Many compositions are broadcast from Ranchi and Bhagalpur Radio Station. A lot of his work haS been published in the weekly magazines Adibasi and Hor Sombad, published from Ranchi and Santal Pargana which dealt with the socio-cultural aspect of tribal life and has special importance in the field of literature and culture of the santal people. He was a thinker on a national level in the world of art and culture. He worked for the preservation and promotion of tribal folk culture, art, music, dance and literature.

He devoted his entire life to socio-cultural works, promotion and spreading of education and social services. As there were no High Schools in his village, he donated five acres of land from his ancestral property and the Chandrasekhar Singh Adibasi High School was opened in 1983. He dedicated his life for the betterment of tribal people. He was awarded ₹4,000 by Bihar Rajbhasa Bibhag, Government of Bihar for his book Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru in 1987.

He was nominated member of Sangeet Natak Akademi, New Delhi for 5 years. He was the founding vice-president of Santal Sanskritik Parishad, Ranchi and President of Santali Sahitya Parishad, Dumka. He was also a member of many socio-cultural organisations and held prominent posts. He was awarded Padma Shri by the President of India Dr Ramaswamy Venkataraman on 6 April, 1992, for his distinguished contribution towards folk dance and folk music.

As per the rules of creation, death will happen. The great man passed away on 13 July, 2016, leaving great treasure for us. He will be alive forever through his remarkable contribution to society and nation.


  1. Chandra Mohan Kisku, Santali Writer
  2. Mahadev Hansda, Editor, Tetre (Santali Literary Magazine)
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