Published On : Tue, Jan 18th, 2022
National News | By Nagpur Today Nagpur News

Legendary cartoonist Narayan Debnath dies at 97

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Cartoonist Narayan Debnath, the creator of Bengali comic characters ‘Bantul The Great’, ‘Handa Bhonda’ and ‘Nonte Phonte’, died in Kolkata on Tuesday morning after a prolonged illness, said the hospital where he was undergoing treatment.

He was 97 and survived by two sons, a daughter and a granddaughter. Debnath, who was handed the Padma Shri award while undergoing treatment at the hospital, died at 10.15 am, his family said.

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He was put on ventilator support as his condition deteriorated after being admitted to the hospital on December 24.

In his career spanning over six decades, Debnath created comic characters such as ‘Bantul The Great’, ‘Handa Bhonda’ and ‘Nonte Phonte’ — all of which are household names in Bengal.

Condoling the death, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said Debnath brightened several lives through his works, cartoons and illustrations.

“His works reflected his intellectual prowess. The characters he created will remain eternally popular. Pained by his demise. Condolences to his family and admirers. Om Shanti,” Modi tweeted.

The first comic strip of ‘Handa Bhonda’ was published in 1962 in Bengali children’s magazine ‘Suktara’, brought out by Deb Sahitya Kutir. It was followed by ‘Bantul The Great’ (1965) and ‘Nonte Phonte’ (1969). Debnath continued working till the age of 93 when the last comic strip of ‘Nonte Phonte’ was published in the 2017 Durga Puja issue of Suktara.

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