MANGALDAI, Oct 3 - Several organisations of Darrang district, including the district administration and the Krishi Vigyan Kendra (KVK) observed the 150th birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi on Wednesday, with a variety of programmes particularly aiming at the ban of single-use plastic.
The day-long celebration of the district administration began with the playing of bhajans, followed by garlanding of the bust of Gandhi in the DC Court campus, lighting of lamps at the symbolic altar of Gandhi located at the Gandhi Smriti Udyan, speeches on Gandhian philosophy and enacting of street drama on Swacchta.
The celebration ended with a plogging run through the main thoroughfares of Mangaldai town. Several prominent persons, including Mangaldai legislator Gurujyoti Das, Deputy Commissioner Ghansyam Dass, Additional Deputy Commissioner Nabajyoti Oja, Kharupetia College Principal Dr Budhin Hazarika besides students and local people took part in the celebrations.
The District Tobacco Control Cell of Darrang under the District Health Society launched the Tobacco Free Educational Institution (ToFEI) programme on Wednesday, during the 150th birth anniversary celebrations of Mahatma Gandhi.
The ToFEI programme was launched as per instructions from the Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare.
In this connection, an awareness-cum-discussion and community pledge administering ceremony was conducted at Mangaldai Maharshi Vidya Mandir, a degree-level private educational institution located at Gerimari.
Delivering the keynote address, Dr Nirmal Kumar Beriya, nodal officer at the District Tobacco Control Cell, explained the adverse effect of tobacco on children and youths.
�Around 5,500 children start using tobacco every day in India. Out of the 26.7 crore tobacco users in our country, nearly 29 per cent are just over 15 years of age. More significantly, 90 per cent people start using tobacco in their teens, usually at the age of 15-20 years,� he said.
On the alarming cancer situation caused by use of tobacco, Dr Beriya said, �Around 13.5 lakh people die every year due to tobacco-related diseases. Around 50 per cent of all cancers and 90 per cent of cases of oral cancer are caused by tobacco. The country has to bear a cost of Rs 1.04 lakh crore in health care due to tobacco use, which is more than six times the revenue earned from tobacco products, amounting to Rs 17,000 crore,� he said.
He also threw light on smokeless tobacco, second-hand smoking and the different penalty provisions under the Cigarettes and Other Tobacco Products Act (COTPA), including the ban of its use within a 100-yard radius of any educational institution.
The session moderated by Principal Pradip Sarmah also witnessed administering of the community pledge on �No Tobacco� led by Vice Principal Hemanta Payeng.
The KVK, Darrang in collaboration with Vivekananda Kendra Vidyalaya, also celebrated Gandhi Jayanti. The programme started with an art competition on Mahatma Gandhi among students, which was followed by a swachhata programme and a plantation programme. MK Chauhan, head of KVK, Darrang, requested students to maintain cleanliness in their day-to-day lives, in order to make the society and the country a healthier one.
KALAIGAON: Gandhi Jayanti was celebrated at Kalaigaon with the unveiling of a life-size statue of Mahatma Gandhi. The celebration started at the Kalaigaon IB premises with a plantation drive led by Dr CP Payeng, Senior Medical Officer, Kalaigaon Model Hospital. Kali Charan Barua, a relative of martyr Kanaklata Barua of Borongabari, Gohpur unveiled the statue of Mahatma Gandhi built at a cost of Rs 12 lakh, mostly through public donations.
An open session was presided over by Kalaigaon MLA Maheswar Boro, while Taren Boro, president of the Bodo Sahitya Sabha, inaugurated a souvenir Mahatma on the occasion. Dr Paramananda Rajbongshi, president of the Asam Sahitya Sabha, inaugurated a book on Assam Movement days titled Asom Andolon: Kararudha Jibon Aru Etu Situ written by former AASU leader Hiren Kumar Saharia. Mangaldai MP Dilip Saikia and Basab Chandra Kalita, president of the Sadou Asom Karmachari Parishad, also attended the ceremony.
DHEMAJI: A massing cleanliness programme, procession and discussion on Mahatma Gandhi�s ideology was conducted in various parts of Dhemaji district to pay tributes to the Father of the Nation on his 150th birth anniversary.
Dhemaji district police with the help of community organisations conducted a massive cleaning drive at Dhemaji, Gogamukh, Silapthar and Jonai town roads. They also paid floral tributes at Gandhi�s statue to mark the occasion.
Educational institutions of the district celebrated the day by organising prayers and literary competitions. Students� unions took out processions along roads carrying placards and chanting slogans asking people to avoid polythene bags and other disposable plastics which caused soil pollution. Different block committees of political parties including BJP and Congress also conducted cleaning and plantation drives.
BISWANATH CHARIALI: The 150th birth anniversary of the Father of the Nation Mahatma Gandhi was celebrated across Biswanath district with various programmes.
A statue of Gandhi located at Cheniram Das Sishu Udyan was garlanded by Deputy Commissioner Pabitra Ram Khaund. Superintendent of Police Rakesh Roshan and Chief Executive Officer of Sonitpur Zila Parishad Diganta Baishya along with other officials and staff of the district administration also paid floral tributes.
To mark the occasion, the Biswanath district administration organised a Fit India Plogging Run with the tagline �Run for a Plastic Free India�. This run cum cleanliness drive was undertaken by the district administration and the Biswanath Chariali Municipal Board. Biswanath MLA Pramod Barthakur, in the presence of DC PR Khaund; SP Rakesh Roshan and BCMB Chairperson Ruli Sarma, flagged off the Plogging Run at Biswanath Chariali ASTC Bus Station where a large number of people comprising officers of various departments, members of police and paramilitary forces, school and college students, teachers, sports department officials, and citizens participated. Similar programmes were organised in all development blocks of the district with active participation of BDOs, PRI representatives, students and local citizens.
Addressing the participants, the Deputy Commissioner appealed to the people of Biswanath to avoid use of single-use plastic and extend their support for ushering in a plastic-free district.
MORIGAON: Along with the rest of the world, the 150th birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi was observed at Morigaon with enthusiasm. A programme was jointly organised by the Morigaon district unit of the Assam Freedom Fighters� Sons and Daughters Association and Morigaon Gandhi Bhavan Managing Committee. In the historic Morigaon Gandhi Bhavan, a cleanliness drive was carried out by senior citizens. The charkha flag was hoisted by Milan Raja, a senior citizen. Addressing the gathering, he dwelt at length about the relevance of the Gandhian thought � prevalence of truth and non-violence in today�s society.
The Ramdhun was presented by Bhabendra Kumar Mahanta, secretary of the Morigaon district unit of Freedom Fighters� Sons and Daughters Association. Floral tributes were paid at the �swahid bedi� in memory of martyrs of Morigaon district who made the supreme sacrifice in the country�s freedom struggle. Later, tarpan in front of Gandhi�s statue was performed by Durgeswar Medhi, president of the Morigaon Gandhi Bhavan managing committee. Several organisations like Sarboday Public School, Nehru Yuva Kendra, Morigaon and other individuals also paid homage to the Father of the Nation.