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Call to keep alive Bagh Hazarika�s heroic legacy

By SIVASISH THAKUR
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GUWAHATI, Dec 27 - Bemoaning inaction on the part of the State government and other social organisations to preserve the heroic legacy of Bagh Hazarika alias Ismail Siddiqui alias Gargoyan Senapati, the most trusted and valiant deputy of Lachit Barphukan, AN Salehuddin Ahmed Hazarika, writer, social activist and the tenth-generation descendent of Bagh Hazarika has appealed to the government to do something for keeping alive his memory for posterity.

Legendary Ahom General Lachit�s heroics apart, the valiant Bagh Hazarika played a key role in handing the all-conquering Mughals a crushing defeat at the historic Battle of Saraighat in 1671.

�The greatness of a community or a society is measured by dignity it bestows on its past heroes and great personalities. Sadly, a hero like Bagh Hazarika is yet to get his rightful status in society as little has been done to perpetuate his memory,� he said.

This, Hazarika said, was in stark contrast to the recognition the Ahom kings Swargadeo Chakradhwaj Singha and later Swargadeo Udayaditya Singha gave to Bagh Hazarika�s valour, warfare skills and patriotism.

Right from his single-handed killing of a marauding tiger following which he was inducted as a Hazarika by Chakradhwaj Singha to his post-Saraighat felicitation and decoration by digging a tank and allotting a vast tract of land to him at Goriajan near Chunpura in Sivasagar district by Udayaditya Singha, he was duly honoured by the royalty.

But regrettably, Hazarika added, the post-independence governments in Assam and its leadership have till now failed to acknowledge and honour the great warrior�s immeasurable contribution for the cause of the motherland during its most trying times.

�When so many of our stalwarts have been given due recognition � sometimes even in a manner of monotonous repetition � this neglect is painful and tantamount to gross injustice to a valiant military figure of Assam whose heroics saved the land from being a part of the Mughal Empire,� he lamented.

Kamala Rajkonwar, president of the Ahom Royal Society and a direct descendent of the Ahom royalty, echoed Hazarika�s sentiments. �Bagh Hazarika belongs to a rare breed of patriots and heroes. His exploits are the stuff of legend. It�s time we gave him a befitting tribute and preserved his legacy,� he said.

Now, in a development that stands to completely erase the memory of this legendary fighter, the Baghdhora Pukhuri High School at Doya Chariali near Chunpura � the actual historical site where Bagh Hazarika lived and where the king had dug a tank in commemoration of his exploits in the Battle of Saraighat � is planned to be shifted to a nearby place for being amalgamated with another school under the State government�s programme to merge schools having insufficient number of students.

In such an eventuality, the only existing tangible memory associated with Bagh Hazarika will sink into oblivion.

The Ahom Royal Society appealed to the Chief Minister and Education Minister to give special consideration to the Baghdhora Pukhuri High School as the site of commemoration of the Assamese national hero, and allow the school to remain in its original place.

�Nothing can be a more apt homage to Bagh Hazarika than to upgrade and preserve the school and the tank as a memorial,� Rajkonwar said.

Hazarika said that the government should treat the matter seriously and develop the site as a memorial for the warrior. �The school with its campus bears the memory of Bagh Hazarika and it should be allowed to stay as it is. We urge the government to renovate the entire area, including the school and the remains of the tank � which stands out as an epitome of Bagh Hazarika�s heroics and a symbol of the pluralistic Assamese nationalism,� he said.

Hazarika expressed the hope that the Assam government would be sensitive to the need of keeping alive the legacy of the great warrior and preserve his inspiring legacy for posterity.

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Call to keep alive Bagh Hazarika�s heroic legacy

GUWAHATI, Dec 27 - Bemoaning inaction on the part of the State government and other social organisations to preserve the heroic legacy of Bagh Hazarika alias Ismail Siddiqui alias Gargoyan Senapati, the most trusted and valiant deputy of Lachit Barphukan, AN Salehuddin Ahmed Hazarika, writer, social activist and the tenth-generation descendent of Bagh Hazarika has appealed to the government to do something for keeping alive his memory for posterity.

Legendary Ahom General Lachit�s heroics apart, the valiant Bagh Hazarika played a key role in handing the all-conquering Mughals a crushing defeat at the historic Battle of Saraighat in 1671.

�The greatness of a community or a society is measured by dignity it bestows on its past heroes and great personalities. Sadly, a hero like Bagh Hazarika is yet to get his rightful status in society as little has been done to perpetuate his memory,� he said.

This, Hazarika said, was in stark contrast to the recognition the Ahom kings Swargadeo Chakradhwaj Singha and later Swargadeo Udayaditya Singha gave to Bagh Hazarika�s valour, warfare skills and patriotism.

Right from his single-handed killing of a marauding tiger following which he was inducted as a Hazarika by Chakradhwaj Singha to his post-Saraighat felicitation and decoration by digging a tank and allotting a vast tract of land to him at Goriajan near Chunpura in Sivasagar district by Udayaditya Singha, he was duly honoured by the royalty.

But regrettably, Hazarika added, the post-independence governments in Assam and its leadership have till now failed to acknowledge and honour the great warrior�s immeasurable contribution for the cause of the motherland during its most trying times.

�When so many of our stalwarts have been given due recognition � sometimes even in a manner of monotonous repetition � this neglect is painful and tantamount to gross injustice to a valiant military figure of Assam whose heroics saved the land from being a part of the Mughal Empire,� he lamented.

Kamala Rajkonwar, president of the Ahom Royal Society and a direct descendent of the Ahom royalty, echoed Hazarika�s sentiments. �Bagh Hazarika belongs to a rare breed of patriots and heroes. His exploits are the stuff of legend. It�s time we gave him a befitting tribute and preserved his legacy,� he said.

Now, in a development that stands to completely erase the memory of this legendary fighter, the Baghdhora Pukhuri High School at Doya Chariali near Chunpura � the actual historical site where Bagh Hazarika lived and where the king had dug a tank in commemoration of his exploits in the Battle of Saraighat � is planned to be shifted to a nearby place for being amalgamated with another school under the State government�s programme to merge schools having insufficient number of students.

In such an eventuality, the only existing tangible memory associated with Bagh Hazarika will sink into oblivion.

The Ahom Royal Society appealed to the Chief Minister and Education Minister to give special consideration to the Baghdhora Pukhuri High School as the site of commemoration of the Assamese national hero, and allow the school to remain in its original place.

�Nothing can be a more apt homage to Bagh Hazarika than to upgrade and preserve the school and the tank as a memorial,� Rajkonwar said.

Hazarika said that the government should treat the matter seriously and develop the site as a memorial for the warrior. �The school with its campus bears the memory of Bagh Hazarika and it should be allowed to stay as it is. We urge the government to renovate the entire area, including the school and the remains of the tank � which stands out as an epitome of Bagh Hazarika�s heroics and a symbol of the pluralistic Assamese nationalism,� he said.

Hazarika expressed the hope that the Assam government would be sensitive to the need of keeping alive the legacy of the great warrior and preserve his inspiring legacy for posterity.