Krishna Kanta Handique

Krishna Kanta Handique (20 July 1898 – 7 June 1982) was a Sanskrit scholar, an Indologist and philanthropist from Assam. He was a recipient of the civilian honour of the Padma Shri and Padma Bhushan[1]

Krishna Kanta Handique
Krishna Kanta Handique 1983 stamp of India.jpg
Born(1898-07-20)20 July 1898
Jorhat, Assam
Died7 June 1982(1982-06-07) (aged 83)
Dibrugarh, Assam
OccupationProfessor, Vice-Chancellor
Notable awardsPadma Shri (1955)
Padma Bhushan (1967)
ChildrenBijoy Krishna Handique

Promila Gogoi

Ohoilia Gogoi


Krishna Kanta Handique was born on 20 July 1898 in a Tai-Ahom family in Jorhat town of Assam, to Rai-Bahadur Radha Kanta Handique. He was educated at Cotton College, Guwahati (1913–15), Sanskrit College, Calcutta (1915–17), Calcutta University (1917–19), Oxford University, Paris University and Berlin University (1920–27). He also studied and learned many languages like Latin, Greek, French, German, Russian, Italian and Spanish. He is known to have known 13 languages: 8 European languages and 5 Indian languages including Pali and Prakrit.

Handique was the founder Vice-Chancellor of Gauhati University for nine years (1948–57). Prior to this he was the founder Principal of J.B. College, Jorhat (1930–48) and established the Hemalata Handique Memorial Institute in Jorhat. He is well known for his munificence to literary and educational foundations. He bequeathed his massive personal library to Guwahati University making available to the public rare and valuable books in 11 languages of the world. He also gave the copyright of all his books to Deccan College PG & Research Institute, Pune; The Jaina Samskriti Samrakshaka Sangh, Maharashtra and Prakrit Test Society, Ahmedabad.

Krishna Kanta Handique was the President of Asam Sahitya Sabha during the Guwahati conference in 1937 at the young age of 39, President of Classical Sanskrit Section, XVI All India Oriental Conference, Lucknow in 1951 and was elected the general President of the Srinagar Session of the same in 1961.

The Indian Posts and Telegraphs Dept. issued a commemorative stamp in honor of Prof. Handique on 7 October 1983. The Govt of Assam has instituted the prestigious Krishna Kanta Handique Memorial Award in his honour in the field of promotion of Sanskrit language and literature.


Handique, the Sanskrit scholar is known for his three major works:

  • Naisadhacarita of Sriharsa, 1934
  • Yasastilika and Indian Culture 1949
  • Pravarasena's Setubandha 1976


  1. ^ "Padma Awards" (PDF). Ministry of Home Affairs, Government of India. 2015. Archived from the original (PDF) on 15 November 2014. Retrieved 21 July 2015.