GUWAHATI : On the second day of the three-day celebration of the 400th birth anniversary of 17th century Ahom Army General Lachit Barphukan by the Government of Assam in New Delhi, Union Minister of Home Affairs Amit Shah, in presence of Chief Minister Dr. Himanta Biswa Sarma, attended as chief guest the plenary session related to the event held at Vigyan Bhawan in the national capital. Speaking at the event, the Union Minister of Home Affairs, paying his tributes to the legendary Ahom general, said Lachit wasn’t a commander alone but a symbol of patriotism whose saga of valour and courage shouldn’t be limited to the boundaries of Assam alone but should spread all across the country. Referring to Lachit as a breakwater to Mughal emperor Aurangzeb’s expansionist ambitions towards the nations of Southeast Asia, the Union Home Minister credited him with being a central force that stopped the Islamisation of a large swathe of land spanning several nations, cultural identities and ethnicities.
The Union Home Minister also lauded Lachit’s skills in using diplomacy and war strategy against a numerically and militarily stronger Mughal force as worthy of further studies and discussion. He also praised Lachit’s skillful negotiations with leaders of various ethnicities inhabiting Assam in forming a united front against the invading Mughal forces. The Union Home Minister also appealed to the new-age historians to stop lamenting about the neglect of Lachit’s saga by their predecessors and work towards ensuring this great general is accorded his rightful place in the discourse of history and historical studies in days to come.
The Union Home Minister showered praises on Chief Minister Dr. Himanta Biswa Sarma for taking the initiative to popularise the indomitable display of courage and valour by Lachit Barphukan while protecting the motherland from the invaders. He exuded confidence this initiative to hold Lachit’s 400th birth anniversary celebration at the national capital would be a step towards making Lachit a household name in days to come. The Union Home Minister also appealed to the Chief Minister to publish a book on the heroic life of the great Ahom general in at least 10 recognised languages of the country. This, he said, would help in spreading the ideals of Lachit among citizen in nooks and corners across India. Speaking at the event, Chief Minister Dr. Himanta Biswa Sarma expressed his gratitude towards the Union Home Minister for gracing the occasion with his presence and sought his blessings and guidance in accomplishing the government of Assam’s future plans towards making Lachit a household name across the country. The Chief Minister credited Lachit with putting a stop to the eastward expansion of the Mughals. Had it not been for Lachit, the cultural and civilizational identity of entire Southeast Asia would have been very different from what it is today, the Chief Minister reiterated. The Chief Minister passionately spoke about the tradition of Assam’s population standing up to Islamic invasions right from the days of king Prithu till Lachit.
Lamenting that Lachit has not been given his due place in the historical discourses at the national level, the Chief Minister expressed hope in days to come, many will voluntarily come forward and reverse this trend, as the life and works of Lachit gets greater recognition from all quarters. The Chief Minister expressed happiness over more than 38 lakh people registering themselves on the Lachit Barphukan app and writing essays/articles eulogising the great general. He expressed satisfaction over people of all ethnicities inhabiting Assam taking part in this year’s Lachit Divas celebration. The Chief Minister also declared that the existing police academy at Dergaon would be named after Lachit Barphukan. Today’s plenary session was also attended by Union Minister of Ports, Shipping and Waterways Sarbananda Sonowal, Union Minister of State for Petroleum Rameswar Teli, Assam Cabinet Minister Pijush Hazarika, Members of Parliament Tapan Gogoi, Ranjan Gogoi, Speaker of Assam Legislative Assembly Biswajit Daimary, among others.