Amidst the tiring monotonous life of North Kolkata, quietly stands the residence of the great Mullicks. Pathuriaghata street, was once the abode of the bengali rich. Even in the 21st century the area is replete with colonnaded mansions.The Mullicks have played a very significant role in shaping and preserving the Gaudiya Treasures of Bengal. In course of our pilgrimage across the state, we have come across several significant temples and ancient spiritual sites, which are currently managed or have been renovated by the Mullicks. The Mullicks originally belong to the gold mercantile community (suvarna baniks) and have traditionally been rich businessmen. To get a glimpse of their enormous wealth, one might simply look up the example of Jadulal Mullick who has a road named after him. His son Manmatha Nath Mullick, bought a pair of zebras from the zoo to pull his carriage through the streets of Kolkata. ‘The Gaudiya Treasures of Bengal’ had the good fortune of visiting this ancient residence of the Mullicks here at Pathuriaghata street. We talked to Mr. Rajat Mullick, one of their descendants, and he was more than happy to relate the history of their great lineage to us.
Sri Uddharana Datta Thakura and A.C Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada are the foremost of the great suvarna baniks to have graced our parampara (Brahma-Madhva-Gaudiya sampradaya). To read and relish more about Sri Uddharana Datta, one might refer to our article entitled – ‘Sri Uddharana Datta Thakura Sripat, Adisaptagram (Near bandel)’. Surrendering his life unto the lotus feet of Lord Nityananda, Sri Uddharana, who had hailed from a very opulent gold mercantile family,subsequently renounced his wealth, fame ,prestige and accepted the robes of a mendicant to further the cause of Krishna consciousness. These heart melting pastimes of Adisaptagram (situated in Hooghly, West Bengal) took place around 500 years back.
Srila Prabhupada, the founder acharya of ISKCON, by whose mercy and magnanimity, millions across the world ,can today follow in the footsteps of Caitanya Mahaprabhu and His associates, also traced back his own family lineage to this gold mercantile community in Saptagram.To read more about Srila Prabhupada, please refer to our article entitled – ’The birthplace of A.C Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, Tollygunge’. Srila Prabhupada once mentioned how the Britishers had established Calcutta, taking the financial help and assistance of these suvarna baniks (Gold merchants).These businessmen had come down from their ancestral homes in Adisaptagram, to set up their businesses here in Calcutta. The Bengalis with the title De ,Sil or Mullick actually belong to this same family lineage and hence share the same gotra (Srila Prabhupada’s earlier name was ‘Abhaya Carana De’). The title ‘Mullick’ was later awarded by the Muslim rulers to those in this community, who intimately associated and conducted business with them.But despite the differences in their surnames, all these family members share a common ancestral root.
The Mullicks of pathuriaghata street have also originally hailed from Adisaptagram. Rajaram Mullick, their ancestor, was the first in their family, to shift his residence to Kolkata and set up his business over here.‘The Gaudiya Treasures of Bengal’ would now like to take this opportunity to reminisce about the significant spiritual sites of Bengal, which the Mullicks have been instrumental in preserving and promoting.