DIBRUGARH, January 4: Fifty years back, a few youths gathered at a primary school on a Sunday and decided to form an organization. The day was June 27, 1965, the place South Jalan gar Primary School and the organization was med Milan Jyoti Sangha.
The aim was to develop an atmosphere in Dibrugarh conducive for football and other sports. Perhaps the group of 17 to 18 youth, which included Jiten Borbora, Amar Pandey, Khireswar Gogoi, Amiyo Hazarika, Pratap Gogoi, Bipin Gogoi, Apar Baruah and Kamal Gogoi, never imagined that the organization would become an institution that Dibrugarh would take pride over. In the years that followed, Sangha’s activities broadened to include social causes.
Milan Jyoti Sangha became a full–fledged organization by 1969. Three years later, they shifted from the primary school to a bamboo hut in the premises of Jalan Industries. In the meantime, the aspiration had grown after winning several tourments. The Sangha became League Champion in 1979. The team of the organization participated in tourments like Bordoloi Trophy, Independence Cup and other State as well as tiol events. Confident about their capability, the Sangha began to organize tourments from 1977 like Lilawati Das Memorial Football, Shyam Sundar Senchowa Volleyball Tourment, Jugal Konwar Memorial Tourment and Mridul Sarma Manik Chandra Sarma Memorial Table Tennis Tourment. They also started to hold Inter–Office Football League. In 1985, the Sangha started holding the All India Garodia Football Tourment in Dibrugarh.
Several players, who went on to establish themselves at the State, tiol and intertiol level, started their careers from here. Intertiol table tennis player, Papori Hazarika Bora, the former captain of the State’s football and volleyball teams, Monobijon Kharghoria, the captain of the Assam team that played Santosh Trophy, Jiten Gogoi, State junior footballer, Khagen Borgohain, and State volleyball player, Biswa Gogoi. Even the Commander–in–Chief of ULFA,
Paresh Baruah, played as a guest player for the football team of Milan Jyoti Sangha and was the goalkeeper while competing in tourments in the State and outside Assam.
The organization, in a departure from their usual work, started the Dibrugarh Book Fair in 1994. The involvement in social activities increased in subsequent years. They started awarding the Pratibha Bala Memorial Trophy to talented students every year. At present, the Sangha has an ambulance service, a mother and child care centre where mothers and children are given check–ups every month, a gymsium and a mini–library. They also hold blood dotion camp.
The Sangha has 300 life members from various places presently with Dr Birendra th Borthakur as chairman and Khireswar Gogoi as organizing secretary.
Celebrating its golden jubilee this year, the organization has planned a yea–rlong programme. The celebration started on December 31 last year with the undertaking of cleanliness drive under the Prime Minister’s Swacch Bharat Abhiyan and the Chief Minister’s Nirmal aru Seuj Asom. The formal iuguration of the golden jubilee celebration was done on January 1 with the Union Minister Sarbanda Sonowal in attendance as the chief guest of the public meeting held on the occasion. The former presidents of the Sangha were felicitated on the occasion along with the most senior member, Prabhat Borkakoti, and former football player, Monobijon Kharghoria.
The Sangha plans to holds the Garodia Football Tourment as a day–night event keeping in mind the significance of this year. They will also hold the ninth Dibrugarh Book Fair. Meanwhile, the organization has applied to the government to be given the responsibility of looking after the playground of the Dibrugarh Government Boys’ Higher Secondary School since they do not have their own ground. If the request is granted, they plan to develop it and
hold their sports events on it. The Sangha is also hoping to nurture capable members to carry forward the work that started in a very humble manner 50 years ago.