GUWAHATI: Assam chief minister Sarbananda Sonowal on Monday said that the state government would continue to uphold the ideology of Srimanta Sankardev at any cost.
He was reacting to the questions of Congress legislature Sherman Ali Ahmed’s proposal to set up a museum reflecting the culture and heritage of the people living in char-chaporis of Assam at Srimanta Sankardev Kalakshetra.
Sonowal said, “The Srimanta Sankardeva Kalakshetra was set up based on the great ideologies of the Mahapurush (saint) and we will keep it alive.”
On Monday, the CM was making a round of visits to various temples in the city marking the Bijoya Dashami ceremony. He also visited the Kamakhya temple atop Nilachal Hills.
Sherman Ali Ahmed’s demand has already sparked a new wave of controversy in the state. While he had demanded to set up a museum reflecting the culture and heritage of the people living in char-chaporis of Assam, many termed it as an effort to impose ‘Miya’ culture in the state.
The term ‘Miya’ is vaguely used in the state to identify the illegal infiltrators from Bangladesh in several parts.
Earlier, the state’s finance and education minister Himanta Biswa Sarma on Saturday rejected Congress legislator’s proposal and tweeted: “In my understanding, there is no separate identity-and culture in Char Anchal of Assam as most of the people had migrated from Bangladesh. Obviously, in Srimanta Sankardev Kalakhetra, which is the epitome of Assamese culture, we will not allow any distortion. Sorry MLA Sahab!”
However, Sarma’s reply to the letter also received criticism as many commented: “If you know that those living in the char areas are illegal immigrants then why you and your government are not taking any measures to stop this infiltration…”
The MLA in a letter to the Directorate of Museum, Assam, for expediting the process of setting up the museum said, “I would like to inform you that one Museum reflecting the culture and heritage of the people living in Char-Chaporis of Assam in the premises of Srimanta Sankardeva Kalakshetra, Guwahati was recommended by Departmentally-Related Standing Committees (DRSC) on Education, 2020- 21 in its 47th Report on Art and Culture (Grant No. 27). I would therefore like to request you kindly to expedite the process of establishment of the same.”