GUWAHATI: Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal today presented Srimanta Sankardev Award, 2020 to eminent litterateur, scholar, researcher, Prof. Bhavaprasad Chaliha at a programme organized by Cultural Directorate at Srimanta Sankardev Kalakshetra. Nandita Chaliha, wife of the awardee, received the award in place of Chaliha, who could not be present due to ill health. The award carries a citation, a gold medal, axarai, angabastra and a cheque of Rs. 5 lakh.
Speaking at the programme, Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal announced that the State Government would start Srimanta Sankardev Mission to spread the ideals of Gurujana and highlight them at the world stage. Saying that Sikh Guru Guru Nanak is known and respected across the world, Sonowal lamented the inability of the Assamese people to firmly establish Sankardev's legacy at the world stage. He called for united effort in this regard by all stakeholders and informed about starting the mission.
Stressing the importance of strengthening the Namghars in the State, Sonowal said that to inculcate moral values among the youth they must be encouraged to visit Namghar regularly while underlining the need to impart humane values in today's development oriented society. He also highlighted State Government's initiative to instill Gurujana's ideals among the younger generation through education by setting up institutions such Madhabdev University, Aniruddhadev University etc.
Sonowal appreciated the efforts of Srimanta Sankardev Sangha in setting up Srimanta Sankardev University to propagate the ideals of Gurujana while informing about the State Government's initiative to preserve the prestige and stature of each big and small community living in the state.
Speaking on the occasion, Minister of Finance, Health, Education Himanta Biswa Sarma elaborated on the intricate values of Gurujana's teachings and the spiritual movement he started to reform the greater Assamese society.
Minister of Cultural Affairs Department Naba Kumar Doley also spoke at the programme which was attended by MP Queen Oja, Media Adviser to Chief Minister Hrishikesh Goswami, Additional Chief Secretary to Chief Minister Paban Kumar Borthakur, Commissioner & Secretary of Cultural Affairs Department Pritam Saikia and several Xatradhikars, among others, a press release said.