Srimati Suratkumari Devi
by Swami Sivananda
Srimati Suratkumari Devi, O. B. E. , Maharani of Singahi (Khyrigarh Estate) in the district of Lakhimpur-Kheri entered into Maha-Samadhi on 26th January, 1936 at the ripe old age of 97. She was a real devotee. She was a Devi-Upasak. She was also a student of Vedanta. Being a Nepali, she ruled her estate very tactfully. She had good administrative capacity. She stood unparalleled amongst the Talukdars of U. P. She founded a Girls' School at Singahi and built a beautiful temple for Goddess Jagadamba in her estate. The Government of India conferred upon her the titles of Maharani and O. B. E for her ability and righteous administration. She was fond of company of Sadhus. Ordinary Pundits and Sannyasins could not stand before her in philosophical discussions. She loved to do Bhajan and Kirtan. For hours together she would sit at her harmonium and pour forth divine songs from the bottom of her heart. She built a solitary Ashram in the Nilkant hills, Himalayas for her spiritual Sadhana. She used to observe Mauna for months together. She was generous, noble, bold, kind, magnanimous and merciful to all. She had a strong will. She always had a cheerful, smiling countenance. In her old age she had the courage to go on a trip to Mt. Kailas. She was absolutely free from pride of being a Maharani. She used to cook food herself and serve Sadhus and sick persons with her own hands. Her face and appearance had a striking resemblance to Dr. Annie Besant. She could sit for hours together on one Asana and could do Pranayama. May her soul rest in peace!