Guwahati (Assam) [India], October 2 (ANI): Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma on Sunday paid rich tributes to Mahatma Gandhi on his birth anniversary in a programme held at Gandhi Mandap at Sarania hills in Guwahati.
On the occasion, he placed a wreath at the statue of Mahatma Gandhi and attended an all-faith prayer at Gandhi Mandap.
The Gandhi Jayanti celebration was organized by the Kamrup Metropolitan District Administration and Guwahati Metropolitan Development Authority at the Sharania hills.
Speaking on the occasion, the Assam Chief Minister said that coinciding with the Gandhi Jayanti, the world is celebrating International Non-Violence Day today with the aim of strengthening peace, harmony, unity and brotherhood in the world inspired by Gandhiji's policies and ideals.
The Chief Minister also paid tributes to the country's second Prime Minister, freedom fighter and people's leader Lal Bahadur Shastri on his birth anniversary today.
The Assam Chief Minister said Mahatma Gandhi lived a very humble life and he was guided by the ideals of spiritual and moral values of the age-old civilization of the country.
In his speech, the Chief Minister also mentioned how Gandhi lived a healthy and disciplined life.
The Chief Minister said, "Gandhiji visited Assam four times. In 1946, Gandhiji arrived at Sharania Hills on his fourth visit to Assam". Explaining the historical importance of the visit, the Chief Minister noted Gandhian Natwar Thakkar who had written that during that visit Gandhiji had inaugurated the Assam chapter of Kasturba Gandhi National Memorial Trust and Gram Sevika Vidyalaya. This was the only branch in the entire country which was inaugurated by Gandhiji, he said adding that Gandhiji had entrusted the responsibility of running the branch to Gandhian leader late Amal Prabha Das.
The Assam Chief Minister said the Sharania hills were donated by Amal Prabha Das' father Dr Harekrishna Das for Gram Sevika Vidyalaya and other activities.
The Assam Chief Minister said, "Gandhiji wanted to live among the poor people and therefore a small hut was built especially for him and all the senior Congress leaders led by Dr Harekrishna Das, Gopinath Bardoloi and Dr Bhubaneswar Barua worked together to build the hut".
Dr Sarma said, "as part of the tribute to Gandhiji, the light and sound show at Gandhi Mandap under the Guwahati Smart City Project was inaugurated on Saturday".
The Chief Minister informed that the light and sound show at Gandhi Mandap is the first holographic projection show in Assam. "The holographic projection show, Purba Prabha, has been launched in Assamese but will be screened in other languages including Hindi and English in future", he added.
The Assam Chief Minister appreciated the efforts of Tricolour India for making this show a grand success.
He said that the show, which is reflected on the Brahmaputra, highlights several important chapters of the glorious history of Assam. Starting from Bhagadatta to the arrival of Sukafa and subsequent history, the contribution of Mahapurush Srimanta Sankardeva, the heroism of Lachit Barphukan, and the sacrifice of Maniram Dewan, the show is an attempt to portray the role of Assam in the freedom movement.
He also added that the show will surely make a significant contribution to highlighting the role of Assam in the freedom movement.
"The Assam Government has taken steps to make the Gandhi Mandap at Sharania Hills an attractive tourist spot and a symbol of pride of Assam", he further added.
The Chief Minister said that the museum of the mandap has been reconstructed and made more informative under Guwahati Smart City Limited (GSCL) initiatives and the Public Works Department.
He further added that GSCL has implemented these projects in the first phase and several other projects are underway in the second phase, he said adding that many arrangements will be made for visitors including viewpoints, parking etc. in the coming days.
He also informed that the development of the Gita Mandir has started under the GSCL and will be completed within a year.
The Chief Minister said that arrangements have been made for the procurement of 100 CNG buses and 200 electric buses for the city under the GSCL.
Moreover, tenders are invited for the development of the Brahmaputra riverfront, he said.
Urban Development Minister Ashok Singhal, MP Queen Oja, GMDA Chairman Narayan Deka, Guwahati Municipal Corporation Mayor Mrigen Sharania, Kamrup (M) Deputy Commissioner Pallav Gopal Jha and many other dignitaries were present on the occasion. (ANI)