Men-Women Relationship in Fakir Mohan’s Six Acres and a Third and G Mohanty’s Paraja

Article Posted in: Research Articles

Men-Women Relationship in Fakir Mohan’s “Six Acres and A Third” and Gopinath Mohanty’s “Paraja”

By – Prof. Sonali Ganguly (published in February 2017, Vol.III Issue.XXV)



Relationships serve as strength for human beings to survive. The feudal set up of Odisha and the tribal life are surrounded by tribal rituals, poverty and rules of the aristocratic community. The reflection is easily evident in the works of Fakir Mohan Senapati and Gopinath Mohanty. The complications in the relationships and the struggle of the rustics for survival is the theme of most of their novels. This study focuses upon the projection of various characters and their helplessness under the crude social system. The relationships which grow, strengthen and ultimately the tie gets shattered being trapped and exploited by the ruling class in Fakir Mohan Senapati’s “Six Acres And a third” and Gopinath Mohanty’s “Paraja”. These two novels are read as the mirror of the Odia tribal and rustic life, culture, struggle, pain and exploitation. But, within all this unpleasantness, lies the fragment of love that heals all the pain, which is also devastated towards the end. This article aims at studying hope that Authors have portrayed in the different shades of relationships that nurture and wither away with the passing time under the strong clutches of social system and corrupt ruling mass.

Keywords: Aristocratic Community, Feudal system, Exploitation, Rustics, Relationship



Fakir Mohan Senapati and Gopinath Mohanty are the two most honourable novelists of Odia literature. Their contribution to the Odia literature is remarkable. Fakir Mohan Senapati(1843-1918) is one of the ‘PATER FAMILIAS’ of Modern Indian Novel. He has outstanding contribution to the Odia literature as he saved the Oriya language and literature from its possible downfall and constantly worked for its survival and development. He could be compared with Charles Dickens as a genial Humourist and social critic and with Thomas Hardy as a great storyteller. ‘Chahamanna aathaguntha’ was one of his famous Novels, published in the year 1912, which was later translated into English as ‘Six Acres and a Third’.

Gopinath Mohanty (1914-1991) was a representative novelist of the contemporary Odia literature after Fakir Mohan Senapati during the 20th century. He too made remarkable contribution to Indian literature especially to Odia literature. His masterpiece ‘PARAJA’ was published in1946. It is most poignant and lyrical among the novels of Mohanty. His first-hand knowledge about the social, cultural and economic life of those tribal people is reflected in this novel.

Fakir Mohan Senapati and Gopinath Mohanty both in their respective novels Six Acres And a Third and Paraja concentrated on the life of the rural and the tribal people. Both the novelists drew their characters from rural background, low in status. They are represented as simple-minded people, living a plain and smooth going life without any complication. With the gradual progress, their tranquil life is ruptured by the intervention of some villainous characters who devastated their world completely and exploited them like anything. The novelists portrayed the life of simple, rural characters who appear convincing and real to us. They presented Man and Woman under different circumstances and deeply studied their characters along with their relationships with others. The novelists brilliantly project the relationship between people from every social stratum. The intimacy along with the conflicts in the intimate relations also reflects in those novels. As their work is always focused on the society, they concentrated upon man as an important and inseparable part of society. Social issues influence the life and relations of the people in such a way that human beings become helpless puppets. Both Gopinath Mohanty and Fakir Mohan Senapati intended to bring Social Reform in the life of the people and to maintain a proper coordination between them.

The characters are either peasants or slaves or weavers or hard labourers. They were satisfied with their life. By a sudden change in their fortune, they are distracted from their peaceful life, they suffer and all the strong ties of relations become loose and they break into pieces. Both of them beautifully presented the different shades of relations we notice in our life. The love relation of young couples full of enthusiasm, dreams and with lots of expectations to find a better life in the near future. The relation of husband-wife in form of Saria-bhagia, Mangaraj- saantaani where we see the reflection of ideal life and conflict and indifference respectively. It also presents the evil intention of the men who love playing with the women and develop an illicit relationship without bothering much about their emotions, sentiments or feelings. The devastating relations also destroy all their emotions, feelings, and sentiments burning them into ashes. Projection of Man-Woman relation, intimacy and enmity with each other worked as an important aspect in Gopinath Mohanty’s PARAJA and Fakir Mohan Senapati’s Six Acres and a Third. Man-woman relationship in both the novels clearly show that love, affection no doubt exists but sometimes the realistic changing circumstances and the corrupt social life force the people to be more self-centred which kills the relationships silently.

Gopinath Mohanty’s Paraja

Paraja is the tragic story of the illiterate and downtrodden tribal who are exploited by the aristocratic, materialistic, modern and superior people. The way the human relationship scatters under the circumstances is shown clearly in this novel. Mohanty’s characters are average and without highly exceptional qualities who go through the ordinary experiences of life. he chose a tribal family and Sukrujani, a tribal patriarch as the chief protagonist. The novelist clearly presented their sorrows and sufferings of the tribal people, their way of life, their joy and happiness and also their exploitation.

The whole novel revolves round Surujani and his four children. He dreamt of a good fortune and to see his children married. His thought to lead a peaceful life by the blessings of a benevolent spirit who made his life easy. His misfortune started with the evil intention of the forest guard who expressed his obscene wish for Sukru’s daughter, Jilli. Sukru aggravates the problem by reacting furiously against the lustful desires of the forest guard. In order to arrange the required money to pay the fine charged on him, he mortgaged his land to the moneylender, Rama Bisoi. Sukru fell in the trap of the money lender and was forced by the changing unfavourable circumstances to become a ‘Goti’( a bonded labourer) all his dreams vanished as flashes of lightening. It was the beginning of his misfortune. Sukru didn’t break with the circumstances, as he was a quintessential man. He waged a heroic but futile war against a hostile universe struggling ceaselessly to accept and adjust.

Gopinath Mohanty presented the inner feelings, emotions and basic instincts of Indian women in this novel. He never gave much importance to feminine beauty. Surkru’s two daughters Jili and Bili were lively girls like newly bloomed flower. They led a simple and peaceful life.

Jili, is the chief female character. Her life was smooth going in the midst of her friends group and love with bangle. She passed days in joking, fun, merry-making. She met Bagla sometimes in the dark nights in their dormitory and with their few love songs and romantic speeches dreamt of their blissful married life being unaware of the black cloud prepared to engulf their happiness and scatter their relationship. The author has brilliantly made the plot move with the pace. Initially presenting the wonderful relationship of love, which was going to get the tribal sanction soon and gradually the plot moved ahead revealing the worst complications resulting into the scattered dreams and devastated relations. The moment Sukru became a slave, she and her sister Bili became orphans. Her friend Kajodi, who was to marry Mandia was a tribal maiden having two handsome suitors in form of Bagla and Mandia. As Mandia was struck by misfortune, he became a slave, and in no way was able to keep her happy, she was much justified in her choice of the second suitor, who was not only able and independent but also knew the skill of winning the heart of a woman, her expectations from Mandia could never be fulfilled.

Jili, was the utmost sufferer. It is at the time odd difficulty or need, when the depth of human relations could be judged properly and accurately. It was the time when she being under the stress of the situation needed the support of both her friend Kajodi and love Bagla. But alas! She could not get anything except betrayal. She lost the support of her family and was confined within the boundaries of loneliness. She was not prepared to accept all the miseries inflected on her. She deserved laughter and enjoyment not tears. She, in order to get the happiness and joy, submitted herself to the lust of the moneylender even unwittingly. She searched for love but couldn’t get the trace of it. Darkness overshadowed her life and the painful memories of her past kept her haunting her as a nightmare. She neither gained nor saved anything. The dreams of love, marriage, relation, and faith everything lost its meaning for her. She could not forget the love relation with Bagla and tried to search love in other ways to come out of mental grief.

 Bili, her younger sister was not affected to that extent of Jili. She escapes sorrow due to the appearance of Nandibali in her life. He loved her at first sight and remained with her till end.

 Kajodi reciprocated the love of Bagla and easily forgot the love of Mandia, but Mandia throughout his life remembered her and shedded tears for his lost love.

The person responsible for this scattered relations was non-other than the brutal, merciless creature Ramachandra Bisoi, the moneylender. Taking advantage of the miserable condition of sukru, he tactfully possessed the land of Sukru, made him and his two sons bonded labourers for a long period of time. Being a lascivious man, he exploited Jili physically. This unrepentant sinner mercilessly ruined the life and family of Sukru and gained a sadistic pleasure through it. He was a man who could never enter to the depth of love relations and emotion of relations. He was just a monster having no trace of affection within him. Bisoi, being an unscrupulous philanderer destroyed many lives at a time. Sukru was separated from his children, Jili and Mandia was separated from Bagla and Kajodi respectively.

 The love relation between Bagla-Jili and Kajodi-Mandia meet an end as both Bagla and Kajodi couldn’t prove their love towards their beloved and couldn’t support them at the time of their distress. Both Bagla and Kajodi being pleasure loving in nature never wanted to sacrifice their own happiness, and life for the sake of their love who were bitten by the snake of misfortune. Their love was short-lived. It was not the bond of strong relation. Mandia and Jili was left alone as Kajodi and Bagla got married and lived happily. Neither Kajodi nor Bagla sympathized either of their beloved. They were left behind to mourn over the death of their happiness, love and fortune. Bili, her sister was always there by Jili’s side but her presence too couldn’t minimize her trouble and pain.

The author beautifully presented the suffering of the innocent hearts, the scattered dreams and the scattered relations. Relations were stabbed openly and they too surrendered in front of the changing odd circumstances where their love couldn’t sustain. The question here arises who is to be blamed? Who is to be held responsible for the mishap that befall on them. Relation sustains on the pillars of trust and depth of intimacy but here we found that the relations felt breathless when they were put to test. Kajodi and Bagla responded to the human instinct and practically moved on where as Jili and Mandia were forgotten as a worst dream. The love of Jili and Mandia couldn’t be questioned as they responded to the demand of the situation. The entire family seemed to be trapped. The thing that is appreciable is the bonding the family members maintained in every odd scenario. That was the only strength they had which helped them to move ahead with the oddities that befell on them.

Fakir Mohan Senapati’s ‘Six Acres and a Third’

‘Six Acres and a Third’ as a wonderful story recounts the rapacious greed of the main character, Rama Chandra Mangaraj, and his mistress Champa, their lust for a small but fertile piece of land measuring ‘six acres of and a third’. Fakir Mohan Senapati presented the picture of various kinds of relations in this novel. The relation between mangaraj-Champa, Mangaraj-Saantani, Saria-Bhagia, Champa-Govinda.

‘Six Acres and a Third’ could be opened at the point where Senapati describes this plot of fertile land as the destroyer of families and responsible for the breaking relations. This small piece of land was one of the rare plots in the whole of Govindapur. It ruined the Bhagasinghas, it caused Saria’s death, and the tragic end to which Mangaraj meet is well known. This novel could be opened at the point where Senapati describes the ‘Chhamaana Atha guntha’ as the destroyer of families and breaking the bonds of relations.

 In this novel, no such strong bond of relationship is found. Mangaraj as a human being was a total failure. He never had love, emotion, feeling and sympathy for anybody. Relations were valueless for him.Money and property were the loving companion for him and he understood only the language of wealth.

 Mangaraj had a perfect coordination with Champa, who was his Mistress. Champa aided and abetted and also played important roles in the evil mechanization of Mangaraj. Temperamentally, they both traveled in the same boat.Champa was his accomplice. Mangaraj was always lead by the evil mind of Champa. His relationship with champa is not mentioned clearly in this novel.

 Mangaraj’s relation with his subjects was not a good one. Being a beast like Character, having no heart and no kindness for the poor peasants, he was hated by the people. He always made tricks, played tactful games and grabbed their land and property. He even became the Zamindar of Sarsandha through flattery and hypocricy. He gained the favour of the real owner,Sheikh Dildr Mia, through his flattery and hypocratic nature and exploited him and finally made him mortgage the whole property to him. He in the name of religion, with the help of Champa played tricks with the innocent weaver couple Saria-Bhagia and grabbed their property.

His relation with his wife was not very pleasant. Saantaani, the wife of Mangaraj is a marginalized was not in her nature to assert herself as the head of the family. She had no desire to dominate others. She had a generic identity like a mother but Mangaraj being a heartless beast never bothered about her and never consulted anything with her. Her fate had denied her a husband’s affection, which is what a women treasures the most, but she suffered the negligence without any complaint. She believed that to serve her husband was her sacred duty and performing this duty gave her joy. She silently tolerated all the tortures, humiliations and still worshiped her husband as a devoted wife of a typical oriya family. She was complete contrast to Champa. Champa always tried to assert herself as the ruling authority of the house. No one could raise voice against her. Saantaani was the embodiment of goodness, kindness, tolerance and was considered by the villagers as the incarnation of goddess of laxmi. Mangraj neither gave a slight importance to her nor loved her. She was loved as mother by the villagers as she always cared for them and served them at their need.

It beautifully presents another relation of Saantani with the villagers. They expecred the concern from Zamindar but found it within Saantani. He also loved to serve the poor as a compensation of the pain inflicted upon them by her husband and champa. She played the role of “Ardhangini” doing something for the poor to minimize the sin of her husband. Her death really brought disgrace to his life.

Mangaraj destroyed the peaceful life of Saria-Bhagia. They were the poor, innocent but unfortunate weaver couple who had no issue. They had love, understanding and faith in their relation.they were happy married couple. Their peaceful marital life was disturbed by mangaraj . He was a monster who made them the target of his cruel game, snatched away their land, property and turned them homeless. Bhagia went mad and saria died a pathetic death. Their relation was scattered by this villain.

Champa’s relation with mangaraj appears to be quite intimate but she betrayed him to satisfy her greed for wealth. She tried to escape to some secret place with a barber boy named Govinda with the ill-got wealth of mangaraj. Mangaraj was a wretch who drives everybody to desperation and death, himself dying without any tears in any quarters.

 In ‘Six Acres and a Third’, man-women relationship is shown at its breaking point. No strong attachment or death of human emotion and feelings could be discovered in this novel. It portrayed three types of relations. One based on affection and faith which fall into the clutches of a monster (Saria-Bhagia). Another is the relation tied of marriage having no emotion. It is a relation but having no base, no attachment, no bonding (mangaraj- santaani), third variety is the type of relation which is based on greed and lust for wealth. Fake it lacks emotions, ties and attachment. It is a fake relation only projected, nothing more than betrayal. Champa and Gobinda had no relations at all. It was money that tied them in a single knot. The basis of every relation is faith, love, emotion and understanding, which lacks in the web of relations found here.


G.N.Mohanty and Senapati Fakir Mohan dealt with a family as the centre of so many characters. In G.N.Mohanty’s ‘Paraja’, we see the people belonging to the tribal class who are different in their appearance, nature, behaviour from the people of the aristocratic, materialistic modern man. No perfect coordination is possible between the people of this two different status. So, their relationship never becomes smooth and friendly, but always there remains a clash of their interest and desires which if increases, destroys the whole family. People on both the sides are affected due to this harsh conflict but the poor and backward people, due to their innocence, poverty and illiteracy always suffer in the hands of the people superior to them. As in ‘Paraja’, the whole family of Sukrujani, which was initially filled with love, emotions and strong bonds of relations, ultimately, scatters and breaks into pieces due to the intervention of the villainous characters in their life. The family and the society sustains with the development and the nourishment of the healthy social and personal relations but here we see that the corrupt and evil intentions destroy the base of healthy relation as well as the life, bonding and dreams-everything gets devastated leaving the characters lonely and lifeless at the end.



1.Senapati, F. (n.d.). Chhamaana Athaguntha.

2.Mohanty, G. (1945). Paraja.

3.Mishra, Y. (1992). Gopinath Mohanty. The Book Review. Vol. 16.

4.Hazam, D. (March 2014). The Common Man’s tragedy: A Reading of Gopinath Mohanty’s Paraja. Journal of Business Management and social sciences Research. 3 .3 : 4-6.

  1. Horan, C. (November,2006). Representation of women and Gender Relations in Six Acres and a Third. Economic and political weekly .14 . 46.
  2. Charan, V J, Bedre RT (Jul, 2012). Gopinath Mohanty’s Paraja-A peep hole to Tribal Life in Orissa. Labyrinth:An International Referred Journal of Postmodern Studies. 3 . 3 : 95.



Introduction to the Author:

Sonali Ganguly is an assistant professor in a management college. Inspired by her parents, she began writing at an early age of 14 and since then, she has kept nurturing her passion for writing. Sonali writes poems and she is also planning a romantic fiction to be published in near future. She has contributed her poems to various platforms and also continues to write research papers. She loves to write about different phases of life.

Explore More in: Academic Research Paper

Read More Articles: