Sundari Mohan Seva Bhawan
It was established in 1965 in a rural area of Cachar District of Assam to commemorate the illustrious memory of Late Dr. Sundari Mohan Das, one of the leading physicians of his time and with the independence movement of India as a great organizer and leader, he devoted his untiring zeal and energy, literally to his last days of life for the development of modern medical services and bringing those services within the reach of common man. It was in keeping with this spirit that this Institution was initiated by his grand daughter Late Dr. Kalyani Das Mishra, a famous Obstetrician and well known social worker. Seva Bhawan is a non-government institution which aims at bringing the modern medical facilities to the easy reach of rural people.
Origin Of Inspiration
Late Dr. Kalyani Das Mishra had early education at Shillong and Calcutta. She had her Medical education and training at Calcutta before working as a practicing Doctor at Sylhet town, now in Bangladesh. In the early fifties she moved to the district of Cachar and settled at the Ramnagar village, an area without any sort of medical and civic facilities at that time. The idea of setting up a Maternity Home in that area for local poor people came to her mind. When her mother Late Subornaprova Das came to her daughter’s place and became acquainted with the sad plight of the poor people inhabiting that area she was very much moved. When she came to know about her daughter’s idea of starting a medical centre and maternity home she offered her entire savings and expressed that the institution might be named to commemorate her father- in-law Late Dr. Sundari Mohan Das. First donation came from Late Leela Dutta, daughter of great national leader of his time, late Bipin Chandra Paul and wife of renowned freedom fighter and revolutionary hero Late Ullaskar Dutta. The inspiration thus received from these two noble ladies acted as a great incentive in bringing this institution into being. Initially the effort to build the institution were confined to her family members and a few admirers of Late Sundari Mohan Das. It was the contribution from small circle augmented by the entire surplus of Late Dr. Kalyani Mishra, that carried forward the initial activities for construction of the institution. But, for making further advance, help and contribution from public became imperative. So in November 1960, Sundari Mohan Seva Bhawan committee was formed with the idea of involving those persons who were sympathetic to the cause of this institution. All resources so far collected and the entire responsibility for conducting the affairs relating to Seva Bhawan were in the committee. It would not be out of place to note with gratitude the names of members and office bearers of that committee who lent their selfless services for this noble and Philanthropic venture. Late Suresh Chandra Deb, Member of Parliament was the founder President , late Dr. Kalyani Mishra was the founder secretary and Mr. Nirendra Mohan Lahiri, eminent lawyer of Guwahati High Court was the Treasurer. Other members were Late Suparnaprova Das, daughter in law of Dr. Sundari Mohan Das, Late Ullaskar Dutta the great freedom fighter, Late Dr. Triguna Sen, vice Chancellor, Jadavpur University Calcutta and ex-minister of Union Cabinet, Late Mehrab Ali Laskar, ex-Principal, Gurucharan College, Silchar, Late Dwarika Nath Tewari, Member of Legislative Assembly, Assam, Late Bina Dutta, president Cachar Mohila Seva Samiti, late Anil Kumar Biswas, eminent lawer of silchar, Late Biresh Mishra ex-M.L.A., Assam and renowned political leader, Mr. Ranjit Das, Managing Director, Universal Drug House, Cacutta, Late Subodh Dutta, Director, Eastern Tea Co.Ltd., silchar. With the formation of the Seva Bhawan Committee the drive for donation was undertaken at Calcutta, Delhi, Guwahati and Silchar. The foundation laying ceremony of the main Hospital building was held on 31st March 1961.The foundation stone was laid by Dr. Apurba Chandra Dutta,M.B.. Central Government Grant for the construction was received on the same day due to the special effort made by late Satijiban Das, the then Commissioner of Relief and Rehabilitation, Govt. of Assam. The construction of two storied Hospital building with a floor space of six thousand sq.ft. was completed in 1965. It should be recorded with pride that poor villagers of the surrounding areas contributed enthusiastically by ‘Shramdan’’ (free labour). The construction workers also contributed equally by taking lesser wages. The opening ceremony of the hospital was performed on 29th December, 1965 by the then chief Minister of Assam Late Bimal Prasad Chaliha. He took a keen interest in this institution and was its patron during his life time.
The Initial Phases
The institution was established to cater to the medical needs of the rural poor, especially for maternity care which was virtually non-existant in the region during those days. It was located about 8 k.m from silchar Town. It attracted patients from all the parts of Barak Valley, Northern parts of Tripura and even far away places like Jowai in Meghalaya. During its hey-day in the 1970’s, it not only served its primary purpose but also played an important role at times of disasters, both natural and man-made, like the war of Independence of Bangladesh in the early seventees, providing relief to thousands of refugees. Late Dr. Kalyani Mishra, her husband Late Biresh Mishra and other members of the trust board, with their untiring and dedicated services made this institution a centre of great hope to the rural mass who came in thousands to get medical help which was not available to them until that time.
The Crisis
With the failing health of Dr. Kalyani Mishra in late 1980’s, the activities of the institution slowed down and virtually came to a close with her demise on 6th May 1989. Late Biresh Mishra took over as Secretary of the trust board and made great efforts to revive the hospital but before he could materialize his dream, he also breathed his last on 29th May 1991. He played the most significant role in the administrative management of the hospital ever since its inception.
The New / Revival Phase
After the demise of shri Biresh Mishra the trust board made a last-ditch attempt to revive the institution. The Hospital Management Committee under the Presidentship of Dr. K.K.Das, chief Surgeon of Red Cross Hospital, Silchar was formed, comprising of doctors of various specialties. The new committee was given the task of reviving the institution to its past glory and build it into a multi-specialty rural health care centre. It assumed the charge of the hospital in July 1992. A significant move of the Hospital Management Committee was the appointment of Dr. S. Pal Purkayasta as chief Medical Officer in charge of administration and Dr. A. K. Saha Medical Officer in charge in 1992. Out-patient services were started for surgery, obstetrics and Gynecology, General Medicine, E.N.T and pediatrics. In-patient admission also started at the same time for all these specialties. Many challenging operations were carried out in spite of the great difficulties arising due to lack of equipment and formally trained paramedical staff. After the new management committee took charge the number of hospital beds were initially increased to thirty from previous strength of eighteen. A separate out-patient wing was started after some modification of old residential accommodation adjoining the main hospital building and some new residential quarters were constructed. The old hospital canteen was revived to supply food at low cost to the patients, attendants and staff. Several new appointments were made to raise a team of nurse and paramedical staff after getting them trained at the hospital itself. Another significant move was the formation of an overseas chapter of the Hospital Management Committee under the active leadership of Dr. Arindam Purkayasta of Windsor, New York, USA. The members of this chapter took keen interest in the development of this institution and took active part in fund collection drive for the new expansions. With the active participation of the members, both local and overseas, the institution re-established its past reputation in very short time. To economically weaker section of people of this valley and adjoining states especially Tripura the institution has brought a new hope.
The Hospital Management Committee expresses it’s gratitude to it’s Donors and Patrons who have immensely contributed for the development of this Institution to it’s present state and hopes that they will continue to extend their helping hands to hospital’s future development programmes.
Deshabandhu Club
SMMT has leased a plot of land measuring 3 bighas to Deshabandhu Club, a reputed N.G.O.This organisation is active in various social service. They have started a day care centre at the allotted land , called “Disha” for the mentally disabled children.