GUWAHATI, Sept 7 - Rich tributes were paid to renowned scholar late Prof Maheswar Neog at a valedictory function of his birth centenary celebrations here today.
Delivering the lecture on the occasion, Prof Ganesh N Devy, a leading light in the study of Indian languages, who had initiated in 2010 the first-ever people�s linguistic survey in the country and led it to assess the Indian languages and their health, described Prof Neog as the scholar who made significant contribution towards historising Assamese language and literature. Such works are needed to save our future generations from aphasia � the phenomenon of loss of speech due to brain damage.
Referring to the Gita, Prof Devy said that everything will be lost if memory is lost. Today we are facing a situation of loss of memory because of the use of external devices to store our experiences, knowledge, etc. This has made the function of the human mind undergo a rapid change. Largescale migration, various economic factors, etc., have taken aphasia to a different level, affecting most severely our memory of the past, he said.
This has triggered loss of language in every part of the country and in every household. It is estimated that in the next 30 years, around 4,000 languages of the world will disappear, speculated Prof Devy.
Inaugurating the function, Governor PB Acharya described Prof Neog as a towering figure in the field of art and literature. Prof Neog is a source of inspiration for the people of the country to take the Indian society forward, he said.
Welcoming the guests, the chairman of the Prof Maheswar Neog Memorial Trust, Prof Nagen Saikia said that Prof Neog was the scholar who initiated Assamology � the study of Assam � and established it as a part of Indology.
Prof Neog also took Srimanta Sankaradeva to the scholars across the globe with his Sankaradeva and His Times, said Prof Saikia.
Releasing Maheswar Neog: A Centenary Volume and the special issue of the Asam Sahitya Sabha Patrika published on the occasion of the centenary
celebration of the renowned scholar, former Vice Chancellor of Gauhati University (GU) Prof Nirmal Kumar Choudhury described Prof Neog as one of the best sons of Assam in the 20th century. This is because of his excellence in scholarly works and his role in the movements like the one for setting up Gauhati University.
Quoting from the introduction written by noted art historian Kapila Vatsayan for the Centenary Volume, Prof Choudhury said that the work of Prof Neog on Sankaradeva is a milestone and will remain a milestone also in the days to come.