By our Staff Reporter
GUWAHATI, July 21: The Assam Government and Gauhati University authorities are leaving no stone unturned to give the Bard of the Brahmaputra the ultimate tribute that he deserves. Bhupen Hazarika’s memorial which will almost be like a temple for the millions who revered and admired him may soon become a reality.
A meeting was held on July 19 in which was present Gauhati University Vice-Chancellor Okhil Kumar Medhi, the Secretary of the State Cultural Affairs Department and the Director of the same department.
State Cultural Affairs Department Director Madhurima Baruah Sen said, “Gauhati University has gladly donated three bighas of land (approx.) within the university campus for construction of the memorial. In fact, the university committee has expressed willingness to donate more land if the project is taken up on a large scale.”
She further said, “Meanwhile, the State Government has already made a budget allocation of Rs 1.5 crore for construction of the memorial. The Cultural Affairs Department has also written a letter to the Public Works Department (PWD) to prepare the detailed project report (DPR) soon.”
As per a government notification issued on July 16, 2012, an advisory committee has been formed to implement this ambitious project, one on which Assam is pinning its hope on in order to preserve the memories of the music maestro.
This 19-member advisory committee comprises the Chief Minister as chairman of the committee, the State Cultural Affairs Minister as vice chairman, the State Information and Public Relations Minister, the State PWD Minister, the State Education Minister, the State Health and Family Welfare Minister, the Chief Secretary of the Government of Assam, the Principal Secretary of the Planning and Development Department of the Government of Assam, the Principal Secretary of the Finance Department of the Government of Assam, Vice-Chancellors of Gauhati University, Dibrugarh University and Assam University, Sudakshina Sarma, Tej Hazarika, Kalpana Lazmi, Lakshminandan Bora, Kanak Sen Deka, Arun Sarma and Kamal Kataki as members of the committee.
The State Cultural Affairs Department Director is the member-secretary of this committee. Madhurima Baruah Sen said, “A meeting of the advisory committee will be held soon. Once the government releases the money, construction work will start. Of course, the name of the memorial site will be one that is acceptable to the people of Assam.”
Meanwhile, State Cultural Affairs Minister Pranati Phukan has also given stress on the early completion of the project.