GUWAHATI, July 24 � Dr Sivanath Barman, noted intellectual of the State stated that Srimanta Sankardev was an apostle of social cohesion in Assam. He was delivering a speech on July 14, on the subject �Relevance of Srimanta Sankardev in the context of present scenario of Assam� in a seminar organised by the Srimanta Sankardeva International Cultural Centre at Slough near London, an e-mail received here stated.
The seminar was inaugurated by Dr Karuna Sagar Das, one of the founder member of the centre. Dr Das presented a detailed report on the activities of the centre since its inauguration by Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi on August 3, 2011. He made an appeal to various institutions working in Assam and to individuals from the State to offer assistance to make the centre a full-fledged one.
He also requested the State Government to release the amount of Rs 25 lakh offered by the Chief Minister of Assam for the centre.
Surabhi Lahan, a resident of London offered her thanks to Dr Das for allowing his personal flat at Slough to be used as temporary office of the centre. She also made a few suggestions to raise funds for the centre.
Dr S Barman made a detailed presentation on the role of Srimanta Sankardev on the making of the Assamese nationality. He stated that there was no concept of �Assam� as we understand it now before the birth of Srimanta Sankardev. Sankardev unified all the communities of the State by his teachings of unconditional submission and unflinching devotion to one God.
Dr Barman stated that considering from that angle, Sankardev may be called the Father of Assamese nationality. He stated that Sankardev was against Brahmanism not the Brahmins. All the tribal communities of Assam had embraced his preaching due to their simplicity. Dr Barman stated that the debate on the word �Mleccha� started by certain leaders of the State was a politically motivated one and that the word was never used by Sankardev to mean the �Bodos�.
Anuj Goswami, an engineer of the Assam State Electricity Board elaborated on the steps taken by Srimanta Sankardev Foundation and Asam Satra Mahasabha to popularise the Sankari culture. Debojit Saikia, a software engineer working in the British Airways in London stressed on the need for raising the burning issues of the State strongly at the national level. Pankaj Khantaniar, a student of management and a resident of London stated that the plans and programmes of the Government will be successful only if there are short-term goals and specific time frames for them.
Dr Khageswar Lahon, Arundhati Das, Anjana Barman, Gautam Bora, Neelakhi Hazarika, Prishni Barkakati, Anamita Goswami and Amrita Goswami were present in the seminar. Archana Choudhury Goswami, a lecturer of the Assam Engineering Institute presented a Borgeet by Srimanta Sankardev on the occasion. Dr K Das offered the vote of thanks to all the guests present on the occasion.