Dr. Ramdas Gupta - Introduction
Dr. Ramdas Gupta, founder of Vrindavan Research Institute, was born on 01 August 1937 in Hathras (U.P.). His mother’s name was Mrs. Satyavati Devi and father’s name was Mr. Jamuna Sharan. Dr. Ramdas Gupta was one of the eight children of his parents, three brothers, Mr. Ramesh Chandra, Mr. Siyaram and Mr. Avadh Kishore, and four sisters Mrs. Vimala Devi, Mrs. Sushila Devi, Mrs. Shakuntala Devi and Mrs. Sita Devi. Renowned Bhagwat Spokesperson Pt. Kapindra ji Named him as Ram Das.
Dr. Ram Das Gupta’s primary education was completed in Hathras, after that he went to Allahabad (present Prayagraj) to get higher education. In the year 1962 he went to London, where he was appointed as a Hindi professor in SOAS University. Dr. Gupta was an academic personality from the beginning and many poems were composed by him. Because of his passion for writing poetry, he established the Hindi Society in London. Where Hindi-scholars would gather and listen to each other by reciting poems. He married with Mrs. Robin Gupta on 29 December 1965 in London, who was herself a teacher. Having a literary interest, Dr. Gupta continued his studies and completed his Ph.D. on the Bhakti Ras Bodhini Tika of Bhaktamal by Priya Das ji. He edited the text from eight manuscripts of Bhaktamal, all copies of which were also accessible in England libraries. He used to visit his ancestral Sri Narayan Dharamshala at Loi Bazaar in Vrindavan. In the same Dharamshala, the Vrindavan Research Institute was established by Dr. Gupta on 24 November 1968 on the auspicious occasion of Bihar Panchami to provide protection to the damaged manuscript treasure. The institute was inaugurated by the then Union Minister Dr. Karn Singh. The objective of the Vrindavan research institute was to collect and publish the manuscript that is being eroded at various sites in Vrindavan and Braj region due to lack of proper conservation and provide them scientific protection and use them for research work. Many scholars, local devotees and saints have contributed to this sacred work. After contacting various temples, ashrams, etc., the manuscript holders were made aware of the importance of these manuscripts and as a result of which this valuable treasure was collected. Initially the VRI was managed with resources earned by Dr. Gupta, the institution continued to operate in Sri Narayana Dharamshala. Later in the year 1984, this institute was transferred to the present building in Dauji Bagichi located in Raman Reti, Vrindavan, with the financial assistance of the Government of Uttar Pradesh. Dr. Gupta’s collection of poems was published through a book entitled ‘Godhuli Bela’. Earlier, he also edited the text of Vrindavaniya Rasopasana, ‘Rahasya Darpan aur Rahasya Chandrika’, along with eminent scholar of Braj Dr. Sharan Bihari Goswami, also published by the institute. He had heartily affection and bhakti in Thakur Sri Baneke Bihari Ji Maharaj of Vrindavan. To make contact with scholars and getting their attention was among the main interests of Dr. Gupta. As a result, he used to motivate many renowned scholars to visit the institution. Thus, the dream of preserving Braj culture and serving the scriptures was seen by him through the Vrindavan Research Institute. Today this institute is on the path of progress. More than 30,000 manuscripts, decrees, handmade paintings and miscellaneous printed texts etc. as well as the representative objects of Braj have been displayed in the Braj Culture Museum for the benefit of curious people. Dr. Ram Das Gupta breathed his last on 27 July 1997 by dedicating this institution to scholars with the goal of hoisting the flag of Braj culture in India and abroad. Now the VRI has been involved to save India’s, specially Braj cultural heritage by joining the leading academic institutions of the country.
Dr. Ram Das Gupta’s Father and Mother