Brojen Das (Bengali: ব্রজেন দাস Brojen Daːsh) (9 December 1927 – 1 June, 1998) was inducted in the International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame in 1965 as an Honour Swimmer and a 1956 Olympian from Pakistan. He was the first Asian to swim across the English Channel when he succeeded in 1958. He crossed the English Channel a total of six times to become King of the Channel® from 1960 to 1974, setting four records in the process. He also held the record for the fastest crossing for three years and swam in the Maratona del Golfo Capri-Napoli. He met Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother, after his last channel crossing in 1961.
Das was born in the Kuchiamora village of Bikrampur, Munshiganj District in Bangladesh (then part of British India). After his primary education in his native village, he passed matriculation in 1946 from the KL Jubilee High School, Dhaka and received his Intermediate and Bachelor of Arts from Vidyasagar College, Kolkata.
- Champion in 100 meter Freestyle swimming Competition in West Bengal in 1952.
- Champion in East Pakistan in 100, 200, 400 & 1500 meter Freestyle swimming in 1953-1956.
- Champion in Pakistan in 100 & 400 meter Freestyle Swimming in 1955.
- Member of the Pakistan swimming team in 1956 Olympic Games.
- Italy, July 1958, Winner (placed 3rd) in the 33 km Maratona del Golfo Capri-Napoli.
- England, August 1958, won the men's competition in the Billy Butlin’s Channel Crossing Swimming Competition (39 swimmers from 23 nations).
- England, August 1959, successfully completed the Channel Crossing Swimming Competition to from France to England.
- England, September 1959. successfully completed the Channel Swim from England to France.
- England, August 1960, successfully completed the Channel Swim from France to England.
- England, September 1961, crossed the Channel once again from France to England.
- England, September 1961, created world record for the fastest swim across the English Channel from France to England.
- 1956: Awarded Dhaka University
- 1960: Pride of Performance award from the Pakistan government.
- 1965: Induction into the International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame
- 1986: Letona Trophy, i.e. King of the Channel from the Channel Swimming Association of the United Kingdom
- 1976: National Sports Award, Bangladesh
- 1999: Swadhinata Padak (Independence Award), Bangladesh (posthumous)
- Atish Dipankar Medal
- Gold Medal, Kazi Mahabubullah Trust and Jahanara Jana Kalyan trust
Das died on 1 June, 1998.
There is an international 10 km open water swimming competition named after Das, Brojen Das Open Water Challenge 2012.
List of Kings of the Channel®
|King of the Channel® - Letona Trophy||Number of Crossings||Years Held Title|
|Captain Matthew Webb||1||1875-1934|