400th birth anniversary of Assam’s war hero Lachit Borphukan to be celebrated


The 400th birth anniversary of Assam’s legendary war hero Lachit Borphukan will be celebrated in the national capital from November 23 to 25 with Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s attendance at the valedictory function.

Borphukan was a commander in the erstwhile Ahom kingdom and is known for his leadership in the 1671 battle of Saraighat that thwarted an attempt by Mughals to capture Assam. The ‘Battle of Saraighat’ was fought on the banks of Brahmaputra in Guwahati.

Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman will inaugurate the exhibition on November 23, while Union Home Minister Amit Shah will be the chief guest at a function on November 24, Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma said.

The prime minister will attend the valedictory function on November 25.

Sarma appealed to the people of Assam to lit up earthen lamps at their homes on the occasion on November 24, which is celebrated as ‘Lachit Divas’ across the state.

He said the celebrations will begin in Assam from November 18 and in the national capital from November 23 to 25.

Guwahati-based artist Nuruddin Ahmed will recreate an Assamese village on the lawns of Vigyan Bhawan.

The village will have a life-size ‘naamghar’ (prayer hall), Assam-type house, ‘chang ghar’ (bamboo stilt house) representing the Mising and Dimasa communities, tea tribe community, portrayal of ‘soklong’ (traditional Ahom marriage) and erecting a maidam (burial mound).

A book on Lachit Borphukan will be released and a documentary on the legendary warrior will also be screened at Vigyan Bhawan, the venue of the event in Delhi.

The chief minister said Union Minister of Law and Justice Kiren Rijiju will inaugurate a cultural programme at Sunder Park on November 23.

Sarma said efforts are on to perpetuate the hallowed memory of the great warrior both within and outside the state.

He said plans are afoot to hold programmes on ‘Lachit Divas’ in other parts of the country too.

The chief minister said he would request the Chief of the Army Staff to hold a memorial lecture to honour the 17th century general.

Sarma said he has written to chief ministers of other states to include a chapter on the Assamese war hero in their school curriculum.

A similar request will also be made to the National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT).

The chief minister is personally monitoring every details of the celebration and holding discussions with his cabinet colleagues, many of whom are camping in Delhi to oversee the preparations.

In memory of Borphukan, the chief minister announced that a 125-foot bronze statue will be built at a cost of Rs 175 crore at his memorial at Hollongapar in Jorhat district.

The state government has also taken up with the Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel National Police Academy (SVPNPA) in Hyderabad to name a building after Lachit Borphukan and to install a statue of the Assam’s icon there.  The National Defence Academy (NDA), since 1999, has been conferring the best passing out cadet with the Lachit Borphukan gold medal, named after the Ahom general.