Rabindranath Tagore is best known as a poet but he was a man of many talents. On the one hand, he was the first Indian to win a Nobel for literature and on the other, a novelist who wrote and composed an entire genre of songs. He was a philosopher and educationist who established a university that challenged conventional education.
Tagore was a painter who played an important role in modernising Bengali art. And he was a nationalist who gave up his knighthood to protest British policies in colonial India after the Jallianwala Bagh massacre.
On his 154th birth anniversary, here is a list of five interesting things about Tagore that you must know:
The confusion about the birthday
Tagore was born, according to the Gregorian calendar, on May 7 in 1861 - but according to the Bengali calendar, it was the 25th of Baishakh.
Tagore's birth anniversary is widely celebrated by the Bengali community on Baisakh 25 - which coincides this year with May 9 - and 'Pachishe (25th) Baishakh' is an important cultural occasion.
This year too, top leaders like Prime Minister Narendra Modi and home minister Rajnath Singh paid their tributes to the poet on May 7, two days ahead of Baisakh 25.
Unfortunately, in 2004, the prize was stolen from the safety vault of Visva-Bharati University.Later, the Swedish Academy presented two replicas of the prize, one made of gold and the other of bronze, to Visva-Bharati University.