Friday, January 30, 2009

Asom Ratna conferred on Dr Bhupen Hazarika

The Assam Tribune-30-01-2009
GUWAHATI, Jan 29 – The State Government today conferred the first Asom Ratna award on legendary musician Dr Bhupen Hazarika. Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi presented the award to Dr Hazarika in a glittering and well-attended function at the Pragjyoti ITA Centre for Performing Arts, Machkhowa here this evening. The award carries with it a memento, a plaque, a citation and a draft of Rs three lakh. Chief Minister also presented a gramophone to Dr Hazarika.

Accepting the award, Dr Hazarika said that it was a great honour for him, particularly because the laurel came to him while he is still alive. He also reminisced the accident he met with while rendering his immortal song “Bistirna Parore…” at a city function two years back. With the blessings of the people and the unstinted support from the State Government he could overcome the crisis even though the treatment is still on.

The second part of his speech was presented through a video projection, which started with ever inspiring “Akasi Ganga….” He said that though he was not in a position to fathom the contribution he made to the people, the love and affection rained on him by the people had kept him over obliged. He also remembered the contributions made by Sahityarathi Lakhminath Bezbaruah, Jyotiprasad Agarwala and Bishnuprasad Rabha, in shaping his outlook and in bringing out the artiste in him.

The State should direct its march towards light and overcome the darkness that has been imposed on it by the acts of violence. For, violence is a major hurdle on the journey towards prosperity, he said switching over to immortal “Manuhe Manuhor babe….”

He then asserted that the dream he dreamt in 1948 in “Jilikabo Luitore Par…” has now come true enabling him in 2009 to sing “Jilikiche luitore Par….” . Now is the time for celebration, for, India, world have ushered into a new era of glory. The election of Barrack Hussain Obama as the President of USA has scripted the end of discrimination.

Dr Hazarika lauded the efforts of the State Government to present computers to each of those high school final examinees placed in first division as a progressive and described the award and love bestowed on him as “ashirbad”.

He concluded his video recorded speech with the immortal composition of Paul Robson – “we are in the same boat brother.”

Speaking on the occasion, Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi described Dr Hazarika as the most deserving son of humanity and said that he deserves a ratna award on behalf of humanity. He also announced the plan of the State Government to institute an annual award in the name of Dr Hazarika.

Describing Dr Hazarika as a philanthropist, Gogoi said that the maestro has the quality of the great men like Abraham Lincoln, Nelson Mandela and Martin Luther King junior, to whom Dr Hazarika himself referred to in his speech. The ideals espoused by Dr Hazarika should be the ideals of the people of the State. “We must broaden our hearts or else we would remain isolated” Gogoi said. Dr Hazarika inspires the people with his songs and deeds and the people of the State should draw inspiration from him to turn the State into a beautiful, progressive one. He made an appeal to the artiste community for the development of the society. The State Government is made proud by Dr Hazarika by accepting the award, said the Chief Minister.

The function was also addressed by Cultural Affairs Minister Bharat Chandra Narah and Commissioner in charge of the Cultural Affairs Department Rabendra Kumar Das. A large number of people including prominent writers and artistes attended the fuction.
Assamiya Khabor - 30-01-2009

Asomiya Pratidin-30-01-2009