Hason Raja

Dewan Hason Raja
Native name হাছন রাজা
Born Dewan Hason Raja
(1854-12-21)December 21, 1854
Rampasha, Bishwanath, Sylhet, Bengal Presidency, British India
Died December 6, 1922(1922-12-06) (aged 67)
Residence Laxmansree, Sunamganj, Sylhet, Bengal Presidency, British India
Occupation Landlord, musician, songwriter, mystic poet and philosopher
Children Khan Bahadur Dewan Ghaniur Raja
Dewan Hasinur Raja
Khan Bahadur Dewan Iqlimur Raja
Dewan Aftabur Raja

Hason Raja (Bengali: হাছন রাজা; 21 December 1854 – 6 December 1922)[1] was a Bengali poet, mystic philosopher and songwriter from Sylhet, Bangladesh. His unique style of music made him one of the most prominent figures in Bengali culture.


Early life

Raja was born on 21 December 1854 in Rampasha, Bishwanath, Sylhet. His father was Dewan Ali Raja, a direct descendant of Birendraram Singhdev (later converted from Hinduism to Islam and renamed as Raja Babu Khan). Hason Raja's mother was Hurmut Bibi, the last and fifth wife of Ali Raja. He spent most of his childhood in Rampasha with his mother. At the age of seven, his father started living in Lakshmanshree of Sunamganj, 33 miles away from Rampasha, for the most part of the year. Ali supervised and managed his paternal properties.[2]

The death of Raja's elder step-brother, Ubaidur Raja, followed by the death of his father (in about 40 days gap), put the power and responsibility of the whole family upon Hason at a very young age.[3]

Later life

Raja established schools and religious centres like mosques, temples and churches, and he is said to have been widely engaged in charities within his immediate communities. He donated vast land properties for the well-being of the people. He was interested in the well-being and protection of birds and animal life. He spent a large quantity of his money on those lives. The 12 June 1897 Assam earthquake was one of the biggest earthquakes that occurred in the Assam and Sylhet area. The largest known Indian interpolate earthquake (at 8.0 on the moment magnitude scale) resulted in the destruction of structures over much of the Plateau and surrounding areas, and caused widespread liquefaction and flooding in the Brahmaputra and Sylhet floodplains. He found out many of his kin and relatives as well as his people wounded and killed. His thatched house was fully damaged. He lost many of his tamed birds and animals.[4]


Raja died on 7 December 1922.[note 1] Two museums were established in his name in two places. One, Hason Raja Museum sponsored by "Hason Raja Museum Trust"[5] at his birthplace, Lokkonshri, Sunamganj, and another, Museum of Rajas' at RajaKunjo, Sylhet, sponsored by "Educationist Dewan Talibur Raja Trust".[3]

Raja's songs are collected in books Hachhan Udas and Shaukhin Bahar[1] It was reported by Washington Bangla Radio in May 2013, that an epic Bengali feature film Hason Raja is under production, based on the life and music of Raja played by Mithun Chakraborty, directed by Ruhul Amin, and produced by Galaxy Films between UK, India and Bangladesh.[9] A volume called Hason Raja Samagra was also published. It contained 500 poems and songs.

Critical response

Author Humayun Ahmed brought Hason Raja's work in limelight again in modern days after using Raja's various popular folk songs in his movies and television dramas.[10][11] Author Rabindranath Tagore quoted on Hason Raja, 'We realise it through admiration and love, through hope that soars beyond the actual, beyond our own span of life into an endless time wherein we live of all men.' and 'It is a village poet of East Bengal who preaches in a song the philosophical doctrine that the universe has its reality in its relation to the Person.'[12]


  1. Sources vary regarding the month and day of his death. Banglapedia (Second edition) says he died in November.[1] The Hason Raja Trust and Dhaka Tribune say he died on 6 December.[5][6] Banglapedia (First edition) says he died on 7 December.[7] The Daily Star says he died on 8 December.[8]


  1. 1 2 3 Islam, Tasiqul (2012). "Hasan Raja". In Islam, Sirajul; Jamal, Ahmed A. Banglapedia: National Encyclopedia of Bangladesh (Second ed.). Asiatic Society of Bangladesh. He died in November 1922.
  2. openlibrary.org/books/OL24244644M/Loker_Raja_Hason_Raja
  3. 1 2 "Hason Raja". Sylhoti.multiply.com. 21 November 2007. Archived from the original on 2011-07-14. Retrieved 2010-11-20.
  4. Khan Bahadur Dewan Ganiur Raja, "Din Panjika" Manuscript Diary, Sunamganj, 1932
  5. 1 2 "Hason Raja". Hason Raja Trust. Archived from the original on 2011-07-14. – 6 December 1922
  6. "Hason Raja's 92nd death anniversary today". Dhaka Tribune. 6 December 2014. Hason died on December 6, 1922
  7. Tasiqul Islam. "Hasan Raja". Banglapedia (First edition). Retrieved December 20, 2013. He died on 7 December 1922.
  8. "Musical programme on Hason Raja on Banglavision". The Star. 6 December 2009. Hason Raja died on December 8, 1922.
  9. Uddin, Romuz (8 May 2013). "Interview-Film-Maker Ruhul Amin on HASON RAJA Bangla Movie Starring Mithun Chakraborty and Raima Sen". Washington: Washington Bangla Radio. Retrieved 1 May 2015.
  10. "Humayun Ahmed's musical creations under spotlight". The Daily Star. 2014-07-18. Retrieved 2017-12-20.
  11. Sun, The Daily. "Humayun's Love For Music | daily sun". Daily Sun. Retrieved 2017-12-20.
  12. Rabindranath Tagore, "The Religion of Man: The Man of My Heart, Being The Hibbert Lectures for 1930", The MacMillan Company, New-York, 1931
 'The Lark of Sylhet" a documentary film on Hason Raja made by Tareque Kazi, Music directed by Bitan Purokayastha

Further reading

  • Raja, Dewan Mohammad Tasawwar (2006). Museum of Rajas' [Hason Raja Museum] (in Bengali). Sylhet, Bangladesh: Educationist Dewan Talibur Raja Trust. 
  • Raja, Dewan Mohammad Tasawwar (2009) [First published 2000]. Hason Raja Shomogro হাছন রাজা সমগ্র [Hason Raja's Oeuvre] (in Bengali). Dhaka, Bangladesh: Pathak Shamabesh. ISBN 978-9848120323. 
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