Lakshmi Kanta Maitra
1895 - 1953

Early Life:  

Pandit Lakshmi Kanta Maitra was born on 23 July 1895 at Narayangunj in present-day Bangladesh. He completed his undergraduate course at Dacca Government College and then studied law at Calcutta University Law College.  

 

Role in India’s Independence Movement:  

Maitra was the Secretary of Congress Nationalist Party (1934-1945) - a party that split from the Congress in 1934 to protest the communal award announced in 1932. He was elected to the Central Legislative Assembly (1934-1936) and was re-elected again in 1946 from the Calcutta constituency. He also served as a member of the provisional Parliament of India.   

 

Contribution to Constitution Making:  

Maitra was elected to the Constituent Assembly in 1946 on a Congress party ticket from West Bengal. He intervened in debates around issues like freedom of religion and the national language of India. 

 

Later Contributions:  

He was elected to the First Lok Sabha in 1952 from the Parliamentary Constituency of Nabadwip, West Bengal. 

 

Maitra also took on a range of administrative roles. He chaired the Food Grains Investigation Committee in 1950 and served in the Food Grains Procurement Committee in 1950.  

 

He was a member of the Special Police Establishment Enquiry Committee (1949-1952) that was constituted to review the Prevention of Corruption Act 1947 and to assess the functioning of the Special Police Establishment (later renamed as the ‘Central Bureau of Investigation’) in curbing corruption.  

 

He passed away on 25 July 1953.  

Maitra was not a member of any of the Assembly committees. 

  • Maitra wanted Sanskrit to be the official and national language of India. He stated that all Indian languages were derived from Sanskrit -  a language he felt could unify Indians. 

 

  • He stated that the right to freedom of religion did not violate secularism.