Rai Bahadur Randa Prasad Shaha was born on November 12, 1896 in Mirzapur village near the Sub-divisional town of Tangail of the erstwhile Mymensingh district. Born in a very humble surrounding and in a family of very limited means, his father, late Debendra Kumar did not have any fixed occupation. He was known as a man of fine tastes. His wife, Shrimati Kumudini, lost her life from tetanus infection during childbirth which was the common fate of most women in contemporary rural Bengal. At that time Ranada Prasad was only a boy of seven years.
Srimati Kumudini’s death grieved Debendra Kumar. Nevertheless, on his friend’s and relative’s advice, he decided to remarry. Little Ranana Prrasad’s restless spirit and yearning for motherly care and attention were hardly touched or soothed by his step mother. Growing up in such an atmosphere Rabada Prasad turned into an unmanageably restless boy and a stage came when he had to be sent to Kachore, near Manikgoni, to stay with his maternal uncle. Rabnada Prasad spent his adolescence there.His formal education could not progress beyond the first few years of elementary school. One day a restless and loveless adolescent Ranada Prasad left Lachore for an unknown destination.
After a long time it came to be known that Ranada Prasad was in Calcutta; he had joined the Abushilan Group and had been jailed. The background and history of how and when he was drawn into the Swadeshi Movement against the British Raj is yet to be unfolded.
During the First World War, Rananda Prasad joined the Medical Corps of the British Bengal Regiment. The work was bizarre, droll and often full of surprises. He successfully graduated from a poverty-stricken life in Calcutta to the role of a Soldier in the Medical corps. He earned distinction in this role. This spirited Bengali once led a life of loneliness and privation in Calcutta. His performance as member of the British Bengal Regiment’s Medical Corps earned him a medal and citation from King Henry the Fifth.
He was back to Calcutta after the end of the war. Calcutta – the city of brick, stone had turned into a coal city by this time. Ranada Prasad took up trading in coal. A wealthy Ranada Prasad Shaha was born through sheer hard work and self-sacrifice.
In 1939 Ranada Prasad started a joint river transportation business in the name of “Bengal River Service” This was the core business of all his commercial ventures. By this time, at around 1940, R.P. Shaha had already acquired George Handerson’s Jute business, Warehouse, jute bale press etc, which were being operated by David and Company at Narayanganj.
After reaching the pinnacle of success, R.P. Shaha placed all his companies and businesses in a “Trust” with a view to use its proceeds for public welfare; “Kumudini Welfare Trust of Bengal” (KWT) thus came into existence for poor and distressed people.
R.P Shaha’s dream was to establish a hospital in his native village Mirzapur to serve the common people. The hospital would provide all kinds of medical care free of cost. In 1943 a dispensary and outdoor facility in the name of R.P Shaha’s grandmother Srimati Shova Sundari was started. The Governor or Bengal Lord Casey inaugurated this 20-bed hospital on July 27, 1944.
The hospital was R.P Shaha’s long time dream. Behind this dream lay the memory of a child who had watched the death of his mother due to lack of any medical attention – a memory that haunted him throughout his life. The edifice that he built to this memory was not just brick and mortar – he had given the edifice a life, a life that seeks to serve. The first and foremost requirement to achieve women’s freedom and establish their rights is education for women. R.P. Shaha dedicated himself to draw a synthesis of modern and traditional education for women and established the Bharateswari Homes in 1944. This particular naming commemorates not only his motherland but also his great grandmother, father, well wishers and relatives. A particular point of interest in this respect is that none of the work that he had left bears his of his wife’s name.
The firm faith in nationalism has been an integral part of our founder’s life, all his work and philosophy testify to the firmness of his faith. Full appreciation of Ranada Prasad Shaha to nationalism is the key to understanding the essence of KUMUDINI. It is the key of understanding how the individual Ranada Prasad- the institution. The son of Bangladesh had dedicated his life for the poor and distressed people. He had used his entire wealth to establish in a remote village a hospital – bigger than any of the city hospitals – to provide education among women.
Since the abduction of the great man and his only able son in 1971, the hospital passed through many critical periods. But an uncompromising drive in spirit, leadership and sincerity of the members of Kumudini Welfare Trust, and with help of the locality the hospital continued to serve the common people.
Till now Kumudini Hospital is the biggest general hospital in the private sector – a fully equipped 750-bed hospital with medicine, Surgery, Gynae & Obs, Eye, ENT, Pediatrics, Dentistry, Maternity and Child Health, Tuberculosis, Diarrhea Diseases with necessary diagnostic support and offering round the clock services including emergency OPD.
KWT felt the need of motivation, qualified medical personnel to fulfill the mission of the founder for which the hospital was established.
Because of its unique and ideal location, glorious background and excellent infrastructural and institutional support to establish a Medical College, eventually on the 4th June 2001, Kimudini Women’s Medical College (KWMC) came into being. The long cherished dream of R.P. Shaha came true. Objectives:
The main objectives of Kumunini Woman’s Medical college are to materialize the dream of the founder of the trust which are as follows;
- To allow a large number of female students to avail the opportunity to become medical graduates.
- To contribute towards filling up the shortage of doctors for the country.
- To provide quality medical education within affordable means.
- To maintain a sustainable standard of medical education that will attract students who eventually find it a better place in medical profession.
- To provide with ore practical knowledge about the basic health care for the community and to inculcate the spirit of dedication in medical students so that they devote themselves to the services of the country’s distressed people.
- To promote widespread spirit of dedication in medical students so that they are motivated for a complete devotion towards serving the country’s distressed community who actually need proper medical care.
The Medical College and hospital constitute the main campus of KWT extending over an area of 110 acres of land, having:
- College building I & II
- Hospital building Complex
- Kumudini Hospital School of nursing
- Annex hospital
Kumudini Women’s Medical College is ideally situated in Kumudini Complex at Mirzapur of Tangail district. It is approximately 60 km north of the capital City of Dhaka with regular road and railway communication. A short journey of 1.20 hours from Dhaka to Mirzapur has become even more convenient as the Jamuna bridge has opened doors for road communication to the entire North part of Bangladesh from Mirzapur.