ANN Service RAHA, Feb 3 - The 10th special session of the Asam Sahitya Sabha held at Jongal Balahu Khetra, Raha concluded today with an appeal to promote Assamese language and literature.
A group song being preformed during the open meet of the special session of Asam Sahitya Sabha at Raha, on Sunday. – UB Photos
The programme of the concluding day today began with an ethnic conference followed by the last open session.
The ethnic conference held in the memory of Dr Pramod ch Bhattacharjyya was addressed by general secretary of ULFA, Anup Chetia. He strongly opposed the CAB, 2016. He said that if this Bill is passed, then Assam would become a second Tripura. In Karbi Anglong, Dima Hasao and Bodoland the indigenous people have already become minorities due to settlement by people from mainland India, he said. All the ethnic group leaders attending the conference promised to maintain the rights of indigenous people of Assam.
Leaders of different ethnic groups Chandra Senapati, Prafulla Hafila, Prem Tamang, Devid Chetia, Mahen Bora, Ratan Kachary, Luhit Gogoi, Joy Narayan Buragohain, Udayan Buragohain, Hafizul Ahmed, Stefen Lakra, Arun Rai, Nabin Jahri, Niranjan Madahi, Chemson Teron, Sanjib Hasong and others addressed the function. They urged the people to delve into deeper studies to develop the mother language and literature.
The open session held at Atul Chandra Barua and Ananda Chandra Barua Memorial Mancha was presided over by Dr Paramananda Rajbongshi, president, Asam Sahitya Sabha. The inaugural address was delivered by Dr Dhrubajyoti Bora, former president, Asam Sahitya Sabha.
The function was also addressed by eminent Hindi poet from Bihar Arun Kamal, Singapur branch Sahitya Sabha president, North America branch Sahitya Sabha president, Assistant High Commissioner of Bangladesh Shah Mahmad Tanbir Mansur, Prof Dr Soumitra, Bengali Department, Dhaka University, Manoranjan Ghosal, Chairman, Hindu Heritage Foundation, Bangladesh and other invited distinguished dignitaries.
Two translated books namely Blood Iron by Dr Dhrubajyoti Bora and Blang Num by Dhrubajyoti Borthakur were released at the function. The 20th edition of the bilingual (Assamese-English) magazine Luit to Thames edited by NRA Dr Karuna Sagar Das, who was present at the function, was also formally released by Dr Rajbongshi.
In the open session, the Asam Sahitya Sabha conferred a number of awards like the Gaurishankar Bhattacharya Best MLA Award to Roselina Tirki, MLA, Sarupathar Constituency, Pulin Das Memorial Sports Journalism Award to Subodhmalla Barua of Dainik Asam and two Talent Awards for NE youths sponsored by the Governor of Nagaland to Rahul Gautam Sarma and Bhanita Das, child actress who played a major role in the movie Village Rockstar.
Meanwhile, a press release stated that the University of Science and Technology, Meghalaya (USTM) also announced the USTM-Sahitya Sabha Scholarships in memory of 22 prominent former Sabha presidents at the open session. The two PhD Fellowships are for research on the lives of two literary stalwarts of Assam – Dr Maheswar Neog and Syed Abdul Malik. The PhD research fellowships will commence from the month of July. As the scholarships are meant for poor meritorious students, only below poverty line (BPL) who scored minimum 60% marks in their qualifying exams can apply. Notification will be released in newspapers and websites of USTM and Asam Sahitya Sabha in the month of April every year. A list will be prepared after submission of all the applications by a Selection Committee, which will compile the list based on merit and level of poverty. The names of the students will be decided by a Selection Committee comprising representatives of Asam Sahitya Sabha and USTM.
Launching the scholarships, Mahbubul Hoque, Chairman of ERD Foundation and Chancellor of USTM said, “Keeping with our mission to help young meritorious students pursue higher education – who would not have been able to chase their cherished dream due to their poor economic background, the ERD Foundation, Guwahati has come up with these scholarships. Students availing these scholarships will be benefited and will always remember the apex literary body of Assam and the invaluable contribution it has been making to the greater Assamese society”.
Addressing the gathering, Paramananda Rajbongshi, president of Asam Sahitya Sabha said that that by contributing to the protection of language and culture, USTM can assume a significant place among the universities of the world. He also said that Assam needs a language policy and support of the Government for the intellectual development of the region is very important, the release added.