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Guwahatians defy militant diktat, observe Republic Day

In an open defiance of militant diktat, Guwahatians celebrated India's 59th Republic Day with great enthusiasm. Residents in various localities hoisted the National Flag in a dauntless display of determination to uphold the dignity of the Tri-colour and the Indian Republic against all threats.

At the Guwahati Press Club, considerable number of writers and senior citizens joined the scribes in observing the Day, where the Tri-colour was hoisted by veteran journalist Dhirendra Nath Chakravarty followed by a spirited speech by him. Chakravorty made an appeal to the militants give up violence and join hands with the mainstream to ensure Assam's smooth march to prosperity.

He said the Republic Day has great relevance for the Indians as it symbolises the country's resolve to determine its own destiny. The Indian independence also paved the way for the liberation of other Asian and African countries as a result of which about 150 crore of the world population could free themselves from colonial bondage.

Chakravarty called upon the people to remember the 4,000 martyrs and their sacrifices in the 1757 Battle of Plassey, the 10,000 martyrs of 1857 Sepoy Mutiny and the martyrs of the 1942-46 movement against British colonialism. They should also remember the 150 martyrs who had to go to the gallows. Of them, seven belonged to Assam. They included Piyali Phukan, Piyali Barua, Maniram Dewan and Kushal Konwar.

The participants of the Press Club programmme, later took out a procession which paraded the main thoroughfares of Panbazar and Dighalipukhuripar shouting slogans like Bande Mataram, Bharat Mata Ki Jai and Jai Ai Asom.

It may be recalled here that a few days ago, a group of 14 journalists and writers made an appeal to the people to defy the ULFA-KLO-backed boycott call and observe the Republic Day across the State. They included Nirupama Bargohain, Dhirendra Nath Chakravorty, Rupam Baruah, Nava Thakuria, Ranen Kumar Goswmai, Bhupen Bargohain, Hiten Mahanta, Promode Kalita, Sabita Lahkar, Mukul Kalita, Manish Goswami, Ajit Patowary, Kumud Ranhan Das and Girindra Kumar Karji.

In Kumarpara and Athgaon localities too, residents observed the Day with a befitting manner. At Kumarpara Pachali, hoisting the National Flag, former Gauhati High Court judge Jitendranath Sarma said the people of Assam should bow down to militant threats. Cowardice never pays, he said and added that the State today demands boldness from its people to forge ahead. The programme was organized by the Jai Hind Club in association with the local people. Students of Angels' English School presented the national Anthem at the function.

At Athgaon Pukhuripar, the Nagarik Committee of GMC Ward number 19, Kumarpara Shanti Sabha Mahila Samity, Ward number 19 Women's Cell and Athgaon Pukhuripar Youth Club jointly organized the celebrations with a day-long programme, which included various competitions among the school children, felicitation to senior citizens and a cultural evening. The National Flag was hoisted on the occasion by Nirmal Kumar Choudhury, a social worker of the locality.

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