Rash Behari Ghosh
Born(1845-12-23)23 December 1845
Khandaghosh, East Burdwan, West Bengal, India
Died23 February 1921(1921-02-23) (aged 75)
Alma materBurdwan Raj Collegiate School, Presidency College, Kolkata
Occupation(s)Politician, lawyer, social worker & philanthropist
OrganizationsNational Council of Education
MovementIndian National Congress

Sir Rashbehari Ghosh CSI CIE (23 December 1845 – 28 February 1921) was an Indian politician, lawyer, social worker and philanthropist. His house in Burdwan District is still there. His family members still reside there. The road is named as R. B Ghosh Road. A very few from next generation have joined legal profession. Many stories related to his life can be found from his biography DADAR KOTHA written by his younger brother Suresh Ghosh, he was a painter. One of his younger brothers was Justice of Calcutta High Court before independence Sir Bipin behari Ghosh.

Early life

Rashbehari Ghosh was born on 23 December 1845 at Torkona village in Khandaghosh area in Purba Bardhaman district in Bengal Presidency. He attended Burdwan Raj Collegiate School and Presidency College, Kolkata. He obtained a first class in the MA examination in English. In 1871, he passed with honours the Law examination and was awarded the degree of Doctor of Laws in 1884.[1]

Political career

Ghosh became a member of the Indian National Congress and leaned towards the moderate wing. He had deep faith in progress but was opposed to radicalism in any form. He served as the President of the Congress for two terms. First in the historic 1907 Surat Session, succeeding Dadabhai Naoroji, after which the Congress split into Moderates and Extremists, and then the year after in Madras, 1908.

Ghosh was a member of the Bengal Legislative Council (1891–94, 1906–09) and the Council of India. He was appointed a Companion of the Order of the Indian Empire (CIE) in the 1896 New Year Honours and appointed a Companion of the Order of the Star of India (CSI) in the 1909 Birthday Honours.[2][3] He was knighted in the 1915 New Year Honours and conferred with his knighthood on 14 July of that year.[4]


Ghosh's ability and contributions earned him a series of honours, such as the Tagore Law Professorship (1875–76) at Calcutta University and an honorary DL degree from Calcutta University (1884).

He made a fortune through his legal practice, but donated much of it by way of charity and endowments. He established Torkona Jagabandhu School (1894).In 1913, he established an endowment for scientific studies at Calcutta University with an initial capital of ten lakh rupees. He also donated 13 lakh rupees to establish a National Council of Education (NCE) at Jadavpur. It later became Jadavpur University. Ghosh was the first president of NCE.

Keeping in line with his ideals Sir Rashbehari Ghosh Mahavidyalaya was established at Ukhrid in Khandaghosh CD Block in 2010. He also established schools and hospital in his village.[5]

He also donated a princely sum (almost 33% of financial expenditure) to Acharya Praffulla Roy for establishing Bengal Chemical and Pharmaceutical Works.

Street named after Ghosh in Kolkata

Considering the contributions made by Ghosh for the people of India, a street was named after him in Kolkata.[6] Rashbehari Avenue, named after him, starts from Chetla-Sahanagar Bridge (Shaheed Jatin Das Setu) and runs eastwards to Ballygunge and Gariahat.[7]


  1. ^ Sinha, D P. "Past Presidents — Rashbehari Ghose". Article. All India Congress Committee. Retrieved 18 March 2013.
  2. ^ "No. 26695". The London Gazette. 1 January 1896. p. 1.
  3. ^ "No. 28263". The London Gazette (Supplement). 22 June 1909. p. 4855.
  4. ^ "No. 29232". The London Gazette. 16 July 1915. p. 6960.
  5. ^ "Sir Rashbehari Ghosh Mahavidyalaya". SRGM. Retrieved 24 March 2017.
  6. ^ P Thankappan Nair, A History of Calcutta's Streets, Publisher: Calcutta: Firma KLM, 1987
  7. ^ Google maps