Guwahati, December 10: Assam Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal on Thursday said the ideals of the ‘martyrs’ of the Assam agitation of 1979-85 must be taken as guiding principles in shaping the Assamese society.
Conducting ‘bhumi pujan’ to mark the beginning of construction work of ‘Swahid Smarak’ (martyrs memorial) and ‘Swahid Udyan’ (martyrs park), in the memory of those who laid down their lives during the Assam agitation and releasing the first volume of a four-part ‘Tathyakosh’ (data book), Sonowal also urged the youths to imbibe the ideals of the ‘martyrs’ and dedicate themselves for the prosperity of Assam by obtaining knowledge and skill through education and make the state ‘Atmanirbhar’ (self reliant).
“The ideals of the martyrs must be taken as guiding principles for shaping the future society so that identity of Assamese race is never threatened,” he said.
As many as 855 people lost their lives in the Assam agitation of 1979-85 demanding detection and deportation of illegal immigrants from the state.
The agitation culminated in the signing of the Assam Accord on August 15, 1985 in presence of the then prime minister Rajiv Gandhi.
The chief minister said since the BJP assumed power in 2016, constant efforts have been made to preserve the legacy of the Assam agitation ‘martyrs’ in all earnestness and construction of the ‘Swahid Smarak’ and publishing a ‘Tathyakosh’ were two key steps in that direction.
He hoped that the data book would prove to be valuable resource material for researchers and academics to study the Assam movement in its entirety and appreciated the editorial team led by Diganta Ojah for its efforts in bringing out the first of the four-part book.
Sonowal said the memorial would preserve the legacy of the ‘martyrs’ who sacrificed their lives for Assam’s cause and inspire the future generations to dedicate themselves for the state’s development.
“If we are to showcase our identity and heritage, we must preserve our history and state government’s initiative to build the ‘Swahid Smarak’ would highlight the valour and commitment of the Assam agitation ‘martyrs’ for protection of Assamese identity to the visitors of the memorial,” he said.
Highlighting the success of his government in delivering its promise of a corruption-free, pollution-free, terrorism-free and illegal immigrants-free Assam, Sonowal said that all round development of Barak and Brahmaputra valleys, hills and plains has been achieved in the recent years while fostering closer ties amongst all sections of the people in the state.
Those who attended the event included state’s Finance Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma, Industries Minister Chandra Mohan Patowary, Agriculture Minister Atul Bora and the chief minister’s media advisor Hrishikesh Goswami besides others. (PTI)