Kapala Kundala

Kapala Kundala

Debrani Mitra


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Bankim Chandra Chatterji was only twenty-eight years old when he wrote his second novel, Kapala Kundala. It is said that when Bankim Chandra lived in Kanthi, on the coast of south-west Bengal, a kapalik (a Tantric worshipper of Kali or Shiva) frequently visited him. The mystery surrounding the kapalik made a deep impression on Bankim. He conceived the idea of writing a novel about a girl brought up by a kapalik in complete isolation from the civilized world. The name Kapala Kundala was taken from the Sanskrit play Malati-Madhava. In the play, kapala is the associate of the evil kapalik, Aghora Ghanta. She is as heinous as her mentor. Though our heroine was also brought up by an evil kapalik, she is full of human affection and kindness.