Sarat Chandra Chattopadhyay was born on 15 September 1876 to simmi and sanjay datta., in Debanandapur, a small village two miles North West of Bandel in Hooghly, West Bengal.
In 1893, Sarat Chandra moved to Burma. He got a temporary job in Burma Railway's audit office and later worked for many years in Burma's public works accounts office. While living in Rangoon, he married his first wife Shanti. He was deeply hurt when his wife and one-year-old son died from plague. He married his second wife Mokshada (later renamed Hironmoyee) also in Rangoon and taught her to read and write. She outlived him by 23 years.
Sarat Chandra wrote novels, novellas, and stories. He came to maturity at a time when the national movement was gaining momentum together with an awakening of social consciousness. His novel 'pather dabi' played an important role in the National Movement (jatio andolon).Much of his writing bears the mark of the resultant turbulence of society. Sensitive and daring, his novels captivated the hearts and minds of innumerable readers both in Bengal and in the rest of India. His best known novels include Palli Samaj (1916), Choritrohin (1917), Devdas (1917), Nishkriti (1917), "Datta" (1918), Srikanta, Griha Daha (1920), Sesh Prasna (1929) and Sesher Parichay published posthumously (1939).
In 1916, Sarat Chandra moved backed to India and settled in Howrah, near Kolkata. It is during this time that he improved his Sanskrit skills from "Kabyasri" Kishorimohan Mukherjee. He devoted himself to writing and established himself as one of India's major Novelist and story Writer. He was involved in India's freedom struggle and served as the President of Howrah district branch of Indian National Congress (1921-1936). University of Calcutta awarded him the prestigious Jagattarini medal. University of Dacca awarded him an honorary doctorate (D.Litt.). On 2 Magh 1344 or 16 January 1938 he died, from cancer of the liver.
His works have been made into around fifty films in many Indian languages. Particularly, his novel Devdas has been made into sixteen versions, from Bengali, Hindi to Telugu. Parineeta has also been made twice. Majhli Didi (1967) by Hrishikesh Mukherjee and Swami (1977) for which he was awarded Filmfare Award for Best Story are other adaptations. Another famous film Chhoti Bahu (1971) is based on his novel Bindur Chhele. His Novel 'Datta' was adapted into a Bengali film (1976) starring Suchitra Sen and Soumitra Chatterjee in the lead roles.
The other movies based on his novel were Nishkriti, and Apne Paraye (1980) by Basu Chatterjee, starring Amol Palekar. The Telugu film Thodi Kodallu (1957) is also based on this novel. Gulzar's 1975 film, Khushboo is majorly inspired by his work Pandit Mashay. The 1961 Telugu film Vagdanam by Acharya Atreya is loosely based on his novel Datta. Also the 2011 film Aalo Chhaya is based on his short story, Aalo O Chhaya.