Fifty-five photographs of Nolini Kanta Gupta


Dear Friends,

Nolini Kanta Gupta (13.1.1889—7.2.1984) was an active participant in the Swadeshi and national education movements from the tender age of sixteen. He was introduced to Barindra Kumar Ghose, noted revolutionary and Sri Aurobindo’s younger brother, towards the end of 1907 who influenced him to join the Maniktolla Secret Society at 32 Muraripukur Road in Calcutta. On 2 May 1908 Nolini Kanta was arrested in connection with the Muzaffarpur bomb outrage along with the other members of the Maniktolla Secret Society. The trial later came to be known as the ‘Alipore Bomb Trial’. After spending a year in Alipore Central Jail as an undertrial he was acquitted in May 1909 due to lack of evidence to prove his involvement in any conspiracy of waging war against the British Empire. He withdrew from active politics after his acquittal from prison and became the chief associate of Sri Aurobindo (whom he had met during the Swadeshi movement) when the latter started the publication of his two weeklies (the Karmayogin in English and the Dharma in Bengali). When Sri Aurobindo left Bengal and migrated to Pondicherry in April 1910 Nolini Kanta too followed him seven months later. When after 1926 Sri Aurobindo withdrew into complete seclusion and the Mother took charge of the newly-formed Ashram, Nolini Kanta became its Secretary. When the Sri Aurobindo Ashram Trust was formed by the Mother she appointed Nolini Kanta as one of the founder-trustees. Regarded as one of the most advanced sadhaks of the Integral Yoga he was equally prolific in Bengali, English and French and went on to author more than fifty books in Bengali, thirty in English and five in French. In the Aurobindonian community he was known as ‘Sri Aurobindo’s manasputra’.

13 January 2014 marks the 125th Birth Anniversary of Nolini Kanta Gupta. As our humble homage to him a set of fifty-five photographs of Nolini Kanta Gupta has been uploaded in the online forum of Overman Foundation.

With warm regards,
Anurag Banerjee
Overman Foundation.



                                                    Nolini Kanta Gupta at the age of twenty-five.

2Nolini Kanta Gupta [seated extreme right] with Sri Aurobindo, Bijoy Nag [seated extreme left] and Suresh Chandra Chakraborty alias Moni [standing behind Nolini Kanta].

2.5Top (left to right): Rajangam, Tirupati, Khitish, Nolini Kanta Gupta, Satyen alias Vindyeswari Prasad, Kanailal Ganguly, Bijoy Kumar Nag, Ambalal Balakrishna Purani and Nagaratnam.
Centre: Punamchand, Champaben (Punamchand’s wife), Mrs. Kodandaraman and Kodandaraman Rao.
Bottom: Champaklal, Suresh Chandra Chakraborty alias Moni, K.Amrita and Manmohan.



6Nolini Kanta Gupta at the inauguration of Sri Aurobindo Memorial Convention on 24 April 1951. [From left to right] Surendra Mohan Ghosh, Surendranath Jauhar, Navajata, Shyama Prasad Mukherjee, Madhav Pandit, Soli Albless, Nolini Kanta, Pavitra, the Mother [seated], Amiyo Ranjan Ganguly, Pranab Kumar Bhattacharya and Udar Pinto.

6.5Nolini Kanta standing next to the Mother at the inauguration of Sri Aurobindo Memorial Oration on 24 April 1951.

7Nolini Kanta with the Mother, Tejendranath Mukherjee, Pranab Kumar Bhattacharya and Udar Pinto in the Sports Ground. The Mother is seen here starting a football match between the Adults and the Youth.

8The Mother at the inauguration of “Senteurs” in September 1958. Behind the Mother are Tanmaya, Udar Pinto, Nolini Kanta Gupta and Gautam Chawla.

9The Mother at “Senteurs” in September 1958 with Nolini Kanta Gupta, Minoo, Udar Pinto, Dyuman and Millie.

10The Mother at “Senteurs” in September 1958 with Nolini Kanta, Pranab Kumar Bhattacharya, Tanmaya, Udar Pinto and Panu Sarkar.

11The Mother at the Handmade Paper Unit on 9 December 1959 with Prabhakar, Udar Pinto, Tarachand, Pavitra, Kiran and Nolini Kanta Gupta.

12The Mother at the Handmade Paper Unit on 9 December 1959 with Panu Sarkar, Nolini Kanta Gupta, K. Amrita, Dayakar, Prabhakar, Pavitra and Udar.

13The Mother watching hand-lifting of paper at the Handmade Paper Unit on 9 December 1959 with Nolini Kanta, Panu Sarkar, K. Amrita, Dayakar, Prabhakar, Udar Pinto, Kiran and Pavitra.

14The Mother at the Island (1958) with Ananta, Amiyo Ranjan Ganguly, Udar Pinto, Nolini Kanta, Eleanor, Huta and Amrita.

15The Mother visiting New Horizon Sugar Mills on 12 April 1959 with Kesarimal, Dayabhai, Chandrakant, Amrita, Nolini Kanta, Udar Pinto and Laljibhai.

16The Mother laying the foundation stone of the New Horizon Sugar Mills on 12 April 1959. Nolini Kanta Gupta and Udar Pinto are standing on her right.

17Nolini Kanta Gupta with K.M. Munshi, Madhav Pandit, Udar Pinto and Charupada Bhattacharya.

18Nolini Kanta Gupta with Vinoba Bhave, Udar Pinto, Madhav Pandit and Indra Sen (August 1956).

19Nolini Kanta Gupta at the inauguration of Sri Aurobindo’s Action with Dr. Kireet Joshi, Kalyan, Prapatti, Udar Pinto, André Morisset (the Mother’s son), Shyam Sundar Jhunjhunwala and Pradyot Kumar Bhattacharya.

20              Nolini Kanta with Manubhai Shah, Udar Pinto, Surendra Mohan Ghosh and Navajata.

21Visit of Jawaharlal Nehru to the Ashram Library on 13 June 1963. Seen with him—Nolini Kanta, Medhananda, Kewal Singh, Madhav Pandit and Udar Pinto.


                                                    Jawaharlal Nehru with Nolini Kanta Gupta.

23Nolini Kanta with the Mother at Jhunjhun Boarding. Also seen: Abhay Singh Nahar, Pavitra and Dr. Kireet Joshi.

24The Mother with V.V. Giri in her room. Seen with the Mother: Nolini Kanta, Champaklal and Tara Jauhar.

25                                                      The Mother, V.V. Giri and Nolini Kanta Gupta.

26                                              The Mother with Nolini Kanta (left) and Amrita (right).

27The Mother in the Exhibition Hall with Nolini Kanta, Pranab Kumar Bhattacharya and Udar Pinto.

28                                         The Mother with Nolini Kanta Gupta and Udar Pinto.

28.5                                                               Nolini Kanta Gupta with the Mother.

29                                                             The Mother with Nolini Kanta Gupta.

30The Mother in the Playground with Pranab Kumar Bhattacharya and Nolini Kanta Gupta.

31The Mother looking at the decorations of Christmas 1960 with Udar Pinto, Nolini Kanta Gupta and Mona Pinto.

32The Mother in the Playground with André Morisset, Nolini Kanta, Amrita, Madame Kobayashi and Gauri Bhattacharya.

33                       Nolini Kanta Gupta at the opening of Trésor Nursing Home on 2 January 1970.

34                Nolini Kanta and Udar Pinto at the opening of Trésor Nursing Home on 2 January 1970.

35The Mother at the Ashram Press on 23 August 1961 with Nolini Kanta Gupta, Robi Ganguly, Amrita and Udar Pinto.

36Nolini Kanta sealing the Urn at Auroville on 28 February 1968. His eldest son Samir Kanta Gupta is standing next to him.

37Nolini Kanta Gupta with Dr. Karan Singh, Udar Pinto, Dr. Kireet Joshi, Charupada Bhattacharya, Sisir Kumar Mitra and Arabinda Basu.

38                                   Nolini Kanta and Udar Pinto with Indira Gandhi (12 February 1971).

39               Nolini Kanta following the Mother’s coffin to the Samadhi vault on 20 November 1973.

40    Nolini Kanta and André Morisset scattering rose petals on the Samadhi (20 November 1973).

41                                                                Nolini Kanta Gupta with Chinmoy.

42                                              Nolini Kanta Gupta with his youngest son Robi Gupta.










                               Nolini Kanta Gupta after leaving his physical sheath (7 February 1984).


[Photographs courtesy: Ms. Gauri Pinto (Sri Aurobindo Ashram), Ms. Paulette Hadnagy (Auroville) and Mr. Anurag Banerjee.]


16 Replies to “Fifty-five photographs of Nolini Kanta Gupta

  1. You have given us, dear Anurag a priceless gift….it is with a great sense of ferver and adoration we go through this.Thank you very much indeed…Dayanand

  2. “Nolini Kanta following the Mother’s coffin to the Samadhi vault on 20 November 1973″—Please don’t say “Mother’s coffin”; it is the Mother’s immortal earthly remains.


  4. Anurag,
    Thank you for the beautiful photographs of Nolini. They never cease to inspire, always drawing the soul and calling for a greater and deeper self-giving to the Mother and Sri Aurobindo which his life exemplified.
    We get a reflection of his sweet relation with the Mother, his soul’s silent, uplifted and happy poise in Her.

  5. Last Photo: Material Physical Sheath of Sri Nolinikant Gupta after he left it.

    Nolinida , one of the first generation persons in Ashram whom I adore. Such picture gallery of all passing souls, all fighter against the Death-God, of the Ashram may be created. pilgrims of immortality will receive courage and inspiration from them. Many thanks for sending the photos.
    Chandrakant P. Patel

  6. Extracts from a recorded talk of Nolini Kanta Gupta – A foremost disciple of Sri Aurobindo

    Nirodbaran in his tribute to Nolini Kanta Gupta: In conclusion let us hear a part of the recorded voice of Nolini-da where we get a clue to his true being (svarupa):

    “The story is after all the story of our adventure upon earth, a common adventure through centuries – not only through centuries but perhaps from the very creation of the earth. It is the story of the adventure of a group of souls, souls who were destined, who were created for the advent of a new creation. I will speak of only just a few bits and some important episodes of this adventure in which I participated, because you wanted to hear my life.

    “We came, all of you, all of us who are here, most of them, in different epochs at the crucial stages of our evolution. In different periods, whenever there was a necessity of an upliftment or an enlightenment, we all came together, each in his own way. So one or two episodes like that I can tell. For example, in Europe a crucial turning point of its history was the Renaissance, the new light. At the time of the Renaissance – we all know that the creator of the Renaissance was Sri Aurobindo – Leonardo – and the whole Renaissance was in his consciousness and all those who flocked around him, each one did his own work. You know that Amrita was intimately connected with that work – he was Michelangelo. And Moni was there – Suresh Chakrabarty. He was one of the chief artists. I have forgotten his name…

    “But all… the work they actually did, you know, the important thing, the consciousness they brought – expressed some sad event, some not so, but living, concretizing the consciousness… My contribution in that age of Renaissance was in France. The Mother always said: “Your French incarnation was very prominent, even today it is very prominent.” That little bit of evolution is still living. The consciousness at that time in France – that was also the beginning of the Renaissance and… the new creation, new poetry – I was a poet of that time and introduced the new poetry in France. At that time the King of France was Francois I. He was in the political – also in the general life of the people he introduced this new light, new manner of consciousness. So I was with him. And who was Francois Premier you know – Duraiswamy!

    “The consciousness of the reality of that country was so strong that when I started reading or writing French – I wrote French – then sometimes I noted down some lines… later I found that I had noted down exactly some verses of this poet of France, Ronsard…”
    I may add an incident of recollection by Nolini-da of a past life. One day when he went to inspect our School garden, he was very much interested in observing the plan of the garden, the trees, the lotus pond and he remarked: “I was the gardener of Louis XIV, Le Notre.”
    (From Tributes to Nolini Kanta Gupta – Pilgrim of the Supermind, edited by Nirod Baran, page: 18-19)

  7. 39 Nolini Kanta following the Mother’s coffin to the Samadhi vault on 20 November 1973., DESHPANDEJI POINTED OUT IN in 2014, am again saying, please correct .no samadhi vault,…to MOTHER’S CASKET

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