DHEKIAJULI, Sept 20 - More than 30 thousand people from across the State, including Dhekiajuli and Barchala LACs in Sonitpur district, thronged the Boy�s High School field here on Wednesday to pay rich tributes to the martyrs who lost their lives during the Quit India Movement in 1942.
It is worth mentioning that during the Quit India Movement, Assam witnessed an unmatched game of tears and blood, when Kanaklata Barua and Mukunda Kakati of today�s Gohpur subdivision in Sonitpur district and Monbar Kochari, Moniram Kachari, Ratan Kachari, Mangal Kurku, Sarunath Sutia, Kumali Devi, Khahuli Devi, Lerela Kachari, Dayal Das Panika, Tileswari Baruah and Mahiram Koch of the greater Bargaon and Naharbari mouzas of Dhekiajuli Revenue Circle, made the ultimate sacrifice for the nation�s independence.
Kanaklata, a teenage girl, and Mukunda Kakati embraced death at Gohpur, while in Golaghat, Kushal Konwar, the then president of the local Congress Committee, was hanged after being falsely charged of derailing a train. The revolutionaries decided to unfurl the Indian National Flag throwing away the �Union Jack�. For carrying out such a plan, only the determined, courageous and dedicated members of �Mrityu Bahini� were allowed to get involved. Accordingly, on September 20, 1942, the revolutionary camp of Gohpur of the then undivided Darrang district decided to unfurl the National Flag at the local police station. Hundreds of youths who had crossed 18 years of age as per the Committee rule joined the Mrityu Bahini. However, the 17-year-old Assamese girl, Kanaklata Barua, an orphan, begged the committee leaders to let her join. Overwhelmed by the girl�s courage and irresistible urge, the Committee decided to make an exception.
The teenage girl later became the captain of the women cadres and proceeded towards Gohpur police station. Despite being warned by Rebati Mahan Som, officer-in-charge of the police station, not to move even a single step further, Kanaklata marched with the Tricolour. Without any further warning, the police fired at her and Kanaklata fell down on the spot. Mukunda Kakati then snatched the Tricolour from her to protect its dignity only to meet the same fate. Amid this bloodshed, the rebellious mass managed to unfurl the National Flag replacing the Union Jack on the premises, challenging the British gun fire.
Ashok Singhal, MLA of Dhekaijuli LAC, who is also the president of Platinum Jubilee Celebration Committee of 1942 Quite India Movement, expressing strong resentment said that though 11 martyrs� names were recorded in the government�s gazette notification, the names of many who were killed in the firing are yet to be recognised.
Habang Kochari, who sustained serious injury in the firing, had to embrace pathetic death due to lack of proper treatment and his name is yet to be included in the gazette notification. �Dhekiajuli incident was indeed a unique episode of the 1942 Movement where altogether 12 persons were shot dead. Nowhere else had such a huge casualty occurred during the Quit India Movement, but their supreme sacrifices are yet to be recorded in any corner of the history of India�s freedom movement,� he lamented, adding that the 12 martyrs are also allegedly deprived of due recognition and homage.
�Freedom fighters like Omeo Kumar Das and Puspalata Das, Bijay Chandra Bhagwati, Phanidhar Das, Mahadev Sarma, Biswadev Sarma, Jyoti Prasad Agarwala, Gahan Chandra Goswami, Kamala Prasad Tripathi and many leaders who played a vital role in taking forward the Movement among the public are yet to get their recognition. Moreover, it is a matter of regret that while the Gohpur incident has been highlighted in the national scenario giving due honour to Kanaklata and Mukunda Kakati, the same has not happened in case of the 12 martyrs of the Dhekiajuli episode, who embraced death for the nation�s freedom,� Ashok Singhal said.
He also alleged that apart from observing September 20 every year as Martyrs� Day, no proper initiative has been taken till date to establish the name of the martyrs at the national level. However, for giving adequate recognition to martyrs, the State Government in cooperation with the Platinum Jubilee Celebration Committee of 1942 Quite India Movement centrally organised the Martyrs� Day here wherein the martyrs family were felicitated and provided with assistance of Rs 5 lakh each.