Durga Mohan Lahiri, The Oldest Homoeopathist of Guwahati | Guwahati News

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Guwahati Gyan | Durga Mohan Lahiri, The Oldest Homoeopathist of Guwahati

Barasha Das | February 08, 2021 22:11 hrs

In 1868, a young boy named Durga Mohan Lahiri came to Guwahati from Pabna district of Bangladesh along with his paternal uncle who was posted here as the Inspector of Schools. The family settled down in Fancy Bazar. It is the family of Rai Bahadur Mahendra Mohan Lahiri who owned the Basistha Tea Estate that was once at the very place where the current Guwahati Central Military Hospital is located. The tea estate was closed immediately after independence.  

Moving on, Durga Mohan Lahiri pursued homoeopathic medicine. “He was probably the first homeopathic practitioner of Guwahati. He died around 1934,” said Sugato Lahiri, his great grand-son. 


Durga Mohan’s son, Dr. Dwijendra Mohan Lahiri graduated in allopathic medicine from the then Campbell Medical College of Calcutta, now known as the Nil Ratan Sircar Medical College & Hospital. But after practicing for some years as an allopathic doctor he turned to homoeopathic medicine following his father’s footsteps.  


Dr. Dwijendra first set up a pharmacy at Panbazar named Standard Pharmacy. Then in 1939 the Durga Mohan Homoeopathic Pharmacy was established adjacent to Sukreswar temple. The property was procured by Durga Mohan Lahiri in 1896 and the current Assam type house where the family resides was built. “My father use to say about 1 bigha of land was purchased for Rs. 19 only. Dr, Dwijendra Mohan passed away in 1974.   
 

His son Pranab Kumar Lahiri continued to operate the pharmacy along with his wife Rumu Lahiri, although he himself was a government employee. After Dr. Dwijendra Mohan Lahiri none of the family members have ever pursued homoeopathy, but they have kept family traditions alive and have been running the pharmacy. 


Sugato Lahiri fondly recalls, “I remember my grandfather getting ready every morning to sit in the clinic. I have fading memories of the famous personalities of Guwahati visiting my grandfather. My great-grandfather was a contemporary of Tarun Ram Phookan, Nabin Ch Bordoloi and others who used to often visit here.”


Recalling an anecdote he added, “Tarun Ram Phookan used to get medicines from us. He used to tease my great-grandfather saying, ‘Drop a few drops of the medicine at the Brahmaputra Ghat behind your home and I will drink the water flowing downstream to Bharalumukh and get cured’.”



The interior of the pharmacy with the present proprietress Rumu Lahiri

After Pranab Lahiri’s demise in April 2020 his wife is the sole proprietor of the establishment. 


The old clinic room is removed and well maintained still having the Burmese teakwood showcases containing the century old original medical books of Durga Mohan Lahiri that were procured from Europe then.


“We have tried to preserve the old medicine making procedures alongside the new medicines. And hope to continue this family business forever,” said Sugato Lahiri.

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