Sachchidananda Sinha was born on 10th November 1871 in Arrah, in the erstwhile Bengal Presidency. He was educated in Patna, and later in London where he earned his law degree.
In London, he was an active member of the British Committee on the Indian National Congress. He campaigned for the election of Dadabhai Naoroji to the House of Commons in 1892.
In 1893, he enrolled himself at the Calcutta High Court and later practiced in Allahabad and Patna High Court. He played a crucial role in the formation of the Province of Bihar and Orissa.
Sinha was associated with the Congress party between 1896 and 1919. During this time, he was an integral part of Bihar Provincial Congress Committee, serving as its Secretary and later as President.
From 1910-1930, Sinha was a member of the Imperial Legislative Council. He became the Deputy President of the Central Legislative Assembly in 1921. He also held the office of the President in the Bihar and Orissa Legislative Council and served in the Bihar Legislative Assembly. Later, he became the first Indian ever to be hold the portfolio of a Finance Member of a province.
Sinha showed a keen interest in journalism and became the editor of the Hindustan Review, a monthly magazine. He was also an academician and authored multiple books. From 1936-1944, he held the position of Vice-Chancellor of Patna University.
Role in India’s Independence Movement
Although Sinha was considered a moderate, he preferred to call himself a “constitutional nationalist” to signal his belief that Indians should adopt constitutional means to attain freedom. As such, he did not actively participate in the various movements of the freedom struggle.
Contribution to Constitution Making
Sinha was elected to the Constituent Assembly from Bihar on a Congress Party ticket. He served as interim President of the Assembly before Rajendra Prasad was formally appointed as President. Although he did not actively participate in the debates, he submitted important memorandums on tribal issues in Bihar to the Tribal and Excluded and Partially Excluded Areas (other than Assam) Sub-Committee and on the integration of Bihari territory with West Bengal to the President.
Sinha passed away on 5th March, 1950, soon after the Constitution came into force.
Sinha was a prominent academic who published a number of papers and books, the most significant among them being Some Eminent Bihar Contemporaries, Some Eminent Indian Temporaries, Iqbal: The Poet and His Message, Dyarchy in Indian Provinces in Theory and Practice and Kashmir, “the Playground of Asia”.
- Sachchidananda Sinha by Bagishwar Prasad Sinha (2017).
- Sachchidananda Sinha: A Maker of Bihar and Modern India by K.H. Madhukar (1966).