Pandit Makhanlal Chaturvedi, also known as Pandit ji, was a poet, essayist, playwright, journalist, and writer from India. He is best known for his work in Hindi literature’s Neo-romanticism movement, Chhayavaad, and for his involvement in India’s national struggle for independence.
For his novel Him Tarangini, he received the inaugural Hindi Sahitya Akademi Award in 1955. In 1963, the Indian government bestowed upon him the Padma Bhushan, a civilian honour.
On April 4, 1889, Chaturvedi was born in the Babai village in Madhya Pradesh’s Hoshangabad district. At the age of 16, he started working as a teacher. Later, he was the editor of the nationalist journals Prabha, Pratap and Karmaveer, and was repeatedly incarcerated during the British Raj.
After India gained its independence, he chose not to apply for any government jobs, instead continuing to speak out and write in favour of Mahatma Gandhi’s ideal of an equitable society devoid of exploitation.
His most famous poems include ‘Venu Lo Gunje Dhara’, ‘Deep Se Deep Jale’, ‘Kaisa Chhand Banaa Deti hai’ and ‘Pushp ki Abhilaashaa’. Other notable works include ‘Him Kirtini’, ‘Him Tarangini’, ‘Yug Charan’, and ‘Sahitya Devata’.