Economist Amlan Datta,who stirred Einstein,no more

One of country’s top economists who had impressed even Albert Einstein with his work,Amlan Datta passed away today in the city. He was 86. He is survived by his wife and two children who are currently in England.

Written by Express News Service | Kolkata | Published: February 19, 2010 3:40:24 am

One of country’s top economists who had impressed even Albert Einstein with his work,Amlan Datta passed away today in the city. He was 86. He is survived by his wife and two children who are currently in England.

Family members said since Datta had donated his body,there will be no cremation and it will be handed over to Ganadarpan,a Kolkata-based NGO,on Friday.

Datta was born in Comilla

district in undivided India in 1924. Having completed his schooling there,he joined Presidency College and finished his MA from Calcutta University in 1946. A top-ranker in the

university,he started his

teaching career in 1947 from Ashutosh College before joining the Calcutta University,where he served as the Pro-Vice Chancellor before becoming the Vice-Chancellor of North Bengal University and then of Vishva Bharati.

He was also the director of the Gandhi Education Trust.

Datta’s first book For Democracy was published in 1953.

A great statesman and orator, his family members said he was more committed towards the society than his family. “He was an incredibly generous man but he never ever spoke about it. We always got to hear about them from the others. It was his nature to give away everything but never talk about it,” said Arghya Kusum Datta Gupta,his younger brother.

The two shared a close rapport. Datta Gupta admitted that theirs was never the kind of family where the members would sit down to have an adda session — they were more likely to have intellectual discussions.

A publisher of Samatat,a literary magazine,Datta Gupta said even though the magazine was published by him,Datta never patronised it. “Just because I was the publisher did not mean he would patronise it. It was much later when the magazine had made a name for itself that he became a life-member,” said his brother.

When arrangements were being made for the celebration of his 75 th birthday,Datta insisted there would be no microphone at the venue nor should there be any advertisements in the paper informing people about it. “He shied away from publicity,” Datta Gupta said.

Known for his lucid style of writing,Datta was once complemented by Albert Einstein,who once wrote to him in July 1953 that his style of writing reminded him of Ceasar’s De Bello Gellico.

“I have read the first half of your book with pleasure and agreement and hope to finish it soon. It takes more time than one would expect from its size. If you believe that I could do something to facilitate publication in other countries or to draw attention to it in your own country,don’t hesitate to let me know. With the expression of my appreciation and thanks,” wrote the famous scientist.

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