Manik Bandopadhyay (19 May 1908 – 3 December 1956) was an Indian writer and novelist, regarded as one of the major figures of 20th century Bengali literature. During a lifespan of 48 years, plagued simultaneously by illness and financial crisis, he produced 36 novels and nearly 250 short stories. His notable works include Padma Nadir Majhi (The Boatman on The River Padma, 1936) and Putul Nacher Itikatha (The Puppet's Tale, 1936), Shahartali (Suburbia, 1941) and Chatushkone (The Quadrilateral, 1948). Bandopadhyay was born on 19 May 1908 in Dumka, a small town in Santal Parganas district in the state of Bihar in British India in a Bengali Kulin Brahmin family. His real name was Prabodh Kumar Bandhopaddhay. Owing to his dark complexion, he was known to his family members as Kala Manik (black diamond), or simply Manik. His ancestral home was in Malapadiya village of Bikrampur, in Dhaka district (present-day Bangladesh) His father Sri Harihar Bandopadhyay was a sub-register (magistrate) officer who had been working in different parts of the then Bengal like Calcutta, Bihar, Tangail, Brammanbaria etc. due to government rules. He was the fifth of the fourteen children of his parents, Harihar Bandopadhyay and Niroda Devi. Harihar was a sub-registrar who was posted in different parts of Bengal. This gave Manik to experience life and living of people in different parts of Bengal in his early life. Once while he was with his friends in their college canteen, one of them asked him if he could publish a story in the magazine Bichitra. The would-be novelist replied that his first story would be good enough for the purpose. At that time, Bichitra was a leading periodical which carried stories only by eminent authors. Manik walked into the office of the periodical and dropped the story Atashi Mami (Aunt Atashi) in their letter box. At the end of the story he signed off as Manik Bandhopadhay. After four months, publication of the story (in 1928) created sensation in the literary circles of Bengal and, from then on, the pen name stuck.