GUWAHATI, April 27 � The places connected with martyrs Piyali Phukan and Maniram Dewan should be recognised as the heritage sites. Besides, a postage stamp should be brought out in memory of Maniram Dewan, who embraced martyrdom while organising the 1857 mutiny against the British rulers in Assam.
These demands were raised by Maniram Dewan Memorial Trust president and veteran journalist Dhirendranath Chakravorty at a meeting organised jointly by the Kama-rupa Anusandhana Samiti with the Trust here today on the occasion of the 206th birth anniversary of Maniram Dewan. Chakravorty was delivering the keynote address at the function.
He also suggested that the universities of the State should introduce courses on a comparative study of Maniram Dewan and Anandoram Dhekial Phukan.
Describing Maniram Dewan as the most intelligent of the country's 1857 mutiny leaders, Chakravorty also demanded that the books authored by him, as well as the ones penned by others on him, should be re-printed by the Assam Government.
Despite his brilliance and illustrious personality as a leader of the 1857 revolt, Maniram Dewan is yet to find any place in the writings of the historians of the country as a stalwart of the first Indian war of independence, a rueful Chakravorty said.
Focusing on the personality of Maniram Dewan, Chakravorty said that Maniram was an expert in trade and commerce and the British had rely on his knowledge of trade and commerce during the initial days of their colony in Assam.
Moreover, Maniram had in-depth knowledge of road engineering and in this area too, the British colonialists were dependent on him.
As an administrator as well as a revenue expert, Maniram was accepted by the Britishers as their guide during the initial days of their colonial rule.
On the other hand, Maniram knew a number of languages and was a scholar too. He authored the Buranji Bibekratna and used to write for the Arunudoi and some Bengalee newspapers.
Delivering a lecture on Swahid Maniram Dewan�s contribution to the revolt of 1857, Dr Srutideva Goswami, a former Dibrugarh University history professor, said that Maniram�s role in the 1857 mutiny remains to be evaluated properly. Therefore a need is there to discuss the role of Maniram elaborately, he said.
Though apparently it seems that Maniram represented the nobles of the Assamese society, but he could realise the aspirations of the downtrodden people of Assam for freedom and this made him the first Assamese to go for a dream of an Assam liberated from the colonial yoke of the Britishers.
There is the scope to undertake serious study to unearth the factors that made Maniram to raise the banner of rebellion against the Britishers, Dr Goswami said.
The function, presided over by Kamarupa Anusandhana Samiti president Prof Banikanta Sarma, was inaugurated by noted linguist and former president of the samiti Prof Promod Chandra Bhattacharyya. Prof Bharati Barua, secretary of the samiti also spoke on the occasion.