'Bhupendra Jyoti' runs out of fuel, goes out!
By our Staff Reporter
GUWAHATI, May 7: ‘Bhupendra Jyoti’ has run out of fuel and gone out! This Jyoti was first lit on November 5, 2015 when Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi, together with PWD Minister Ajanta Neog and Cultural Affairs Minister Bismita Gogoi, iugurated the incomplete Somadhi of the balladeer on a Gauhati University land.
The Somadhi Khetra was iugurated on that day with the promise that it would be completed within the next two months. The Chief Minister even went to the extent of saying that the Somadhi Khetra would, in no way, be less attractive than Rajghat in Delhi. However, the plight of the Somadhi Khetra now is pathetic. Even before completing a year after its premature iuguration, the Somadhi Khetra has its ceremonial flame going out. In contrast to what Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi said while iugurating the Somadhi Khetra, ‘Gandhi Jyoti’ continues to burn at Rajghat in Delhi.
Circles concerned are bound to think that the way Gogoi iugurated the Somadhi Khetra by racing against the clock even before the construction was over had some political mileage in mind before the recently held Assembly election in the State. The Chief Minister and his Cabinet colleagues failed to act to complete the construction work of the Khetra within two months of its iuguration as promised at the time of opening it for the public.
The main dome at the Somadhi Khetra had a plan to depict Dr. Hazarika’s songs and pictures through audio-video devices so as to showcase them before visitors. The plan, however, continues to remain at its conceptual level. A library, a research centre and an open air theatre hall failed to see light of the day as planned. Around 1,500 visitors, who throng the Somadhi Khetra daily, get no materials like books available there to get valuable information on the balladeer other than his statue.
This apart, the atmosphere seen there now is against finer art. The fencing wall around the Somadhi Khetra has lyrics of the balladeer etched on it with pictorial details to explain them in an artistic way. Such an artistic work was aimed at giving the very taste of the immortal numbers which the singer composed and sang. However, with an extension of the tiol Highway 37 running very close to the wall of the Somadhi Khetra, the very artistic flavour has been affected the worst. Now the lyrics and their supporting pictorials seem to lie on a gutter as the road is made much higher than the wall. When a traveller travels by NH-37, the lyrics and their pictorials fall under the shadow of the road. The space lying between the wall and the road looks like a drain that is covered with weeds. The front wall of the Khetra, on the other hand, has betel-laden spittle staining it here and there. This is not all. Water gets accumulated in front of the wall when there is a smart spell of rain in the area.
This is a fact that Guwahati Municipal Corporation (GMC) is yet to take any cleanliness drive to keep the surroundings of the Somadhi Khetra net and clean. The civic body has not even made the arrangement of a streetlight in front of the Momadhi Khetra. Since no generator is installed there, when there is load-shedding, the Somadhi Khetra remains in darkness.