Committed to protect indigenous language, culture: Sonowal

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59th annual conference of Bodo Sahitya Sabha concludes

HT Bureau

GUWAHATI, Jan 22: “When a race decides to preserve its identity with determination, then only it can succeed. Bodos have shown how a community can preserve and promote its language, culture, literature through hard work and dedication. It is because of Bodo Sahitya Sabha Bodo language is flourishing today,” chief minister Sarbananda Sonowal said while addressing the open session of 59th annual conference of Bodo Sahitya Sabha at Daoharu Fwthar, Khoirabari in Udalguri district on Wednesday.

Highlighting the state government’s commitment to safeguard the interest of all indigenous communities of the state and preserve their language and culture, Sonowal said that the state government has already announced that Rs 10 crore would be provided to the corpus fund of Asam Sahitya Sabha, Rs. 5 crore to Bodo Sahitya Sabha and Rs 3 crore each to the other indigenous sahitya sabhas in the state under Bhasha Gaurab Achoni. This one time grant would be provided to a total 22 indigenous sahitya sabhas so that the language and literature of all communities could be protected, he said.

Saying that rapid development has been ushered into BTAD areas under the leadership of BTC chief Hagrama Mahilary, the chief minister stated that now the perception of BTAD being a under developed and disturbed area has completely changed.

Sonowal also announced that more good news would come to BTAD very shortly and long pending demands of Bodo people would soon be fulfilled.

Urging all sahitya sabhas to have interactions among themselves from time to time, the chief minister said that unity among the various communities of the state must be strengthened by the sahitya sabhas so that the greater Assamese society can continue to thrive and flourish.

Referring to state government’s initiative to provide one time grant of Rs 50 thousand to 1,000 writers of the state, the chief minister urged young writers and litterateurs writing in various indigenous languages of the state to aspire for winning awards like Nobel so that Assamese identity is strongly established at the global stage.

Lauding Bodo Sahitya Sabha for its initiative to digitise Bodo literature, the chief minister said that science and technology are important tools for sustaining a language.

In the programme the chief minister also ceremonially launched a mobile app named ‘e-thunlai’ and e-book and e-library projects of Bodo Sahitya Sabha.

The chief minister also said that the state government is working with Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s motto of Sabka Sath, Sabka Vikash, Sabka Viswas for developing all communities of the state. There must not be any doubt regarding state government’s commitment to safeguard the interest of the indigenous people and it would not allow the control of sons of the soil over Assam to weaken at any cost, he asserted.

Speaking on the occasion BTC chief Hagrama Mahilary thanked Assam government for granting Rs 5 crore to Bodo Sahitya Sabha’s corpus fund and he hoped this amount would bolster sabha’s activities in future. He also informed that requests are being made to Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi and Delhi University for starting courses in Bodo language.

Tourism minister Chandan Brahma, social welfare minister Pramila Rani Brahma, PHED minister Rihan Daimary, Mangaldoi MP Dilip Saikia, Rajya Sabha member Biswajit Daimary, HOUSEFED chairman Ranjeet Kumar Dass, Bodo Sahitya Sabha president Taren Bodo, noted linguist and professor of Oregon University, USA Scott Dylansy, Sahitya Academy Award winner Anju Narzary along with many other dignitaries were present on the occasion.

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