The author, late Dr Nitish Sengupta was a former Member of Parliament and Chairman, Board of Reconstruction of Public Sector Enterprises. He had also served as Secretary to the Government of India and Director, International Management Institute, New Delhi and had been a prolific writer on various subjects.
Dr. B.C. Roy has been one of the foremost national leaders of the 20th Century. A legendary physician of the country, a distinguished political leader, philanthropist, educationist and social worker, he became a top leader of the Congress during the middle period of our freedom movement and, after independence, became the Chief Minister of West Bengal in which capacity he transformed post-partition West Bengal from a problem state into one of the foremost states in the country. He also established himself as one of the foremost national leaders. I considered it a privilege when the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting (Publications Division) requested me to write a biography of Dr. B.C. Roy in the "Builders of Modern india" series. I accepted the offer with gratitude and humility not only because of the great man that Dr. B.C. Roy was, but also because I had the opportunity to work under his shadow when I served as an Under Secretary in the Home Department of West Bengal Government during the years 1960-62. During these years I came to develop great respect and regard for him. I undertook this task in November 2000 and have been able to complete this work by March 2001 despite many preoccupations, political, domestic and others. I had an opportunity to go through the vast mass of Dr. B.C. Roy Papers kept in the archives of the Nehru Memorial Museum. I also found the two books on Dr. Roy by Shri Saroj Chakrabarty, almost of day-to-day account of Dr. Roy's days as Chief Minister, of great use. Indeed he had done for Dr. Roy what Boswell did for Dr. Johnson K.P. Thomas's Biography of Dr. Roy's life before he became Chief Minister, West Bengal, and his early years as Chief Minister. This study has been for me a labour of love. I shall consider my labour amply rewarded if this biography invokes interest among our countrymen in the many splendoured personality that Dr. B.C. Roy, was, his wide range of interests and the large number of institutions that he created in so many spheres, his great vision and his political and administrative acumen, his humane nature and concern for common people and, above all, the way he tried to solve very crucial problems in the nation's life, specially during the 15 years that he served as Chief Minister of West Bengal and as one of the foremost national leaders.
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