While passing by the Brahmaputra, it is impossible that you will miss the giant statue on the river, befitting the personality of Lachit Borphukan, the Ahom Commander who till date inspires generations of Assamese people. Looking at the statue again, it will seem that the great Commander is giving a clarion call to the people of this land, to rise above all the pettiness and together fight the issues plaguing Assam today.
Lachit Borphukan- the epitome of bravery
The story of Lachit Borphukan has attained cult status in Assam. Since our childhood, we have been narrated the tale of the valour of Lachit and his troops in the Battle of Saraighat which had forced even the mighty Mughals to accept defeat and retreat. Saraighat was the culmination of many smaller battles and skirmishes between the Mughals and the Ahoms after the Mughal force under Raja Ram Singh Kachwaha of Amber entered Assam via Rangamati in the spring of 1669. King Chakradhwaj Singha selected Lachit Borphukan to lead the forces of the Kingdom of Ahom to liberate Guwahati from Mughal-occupation.
The most famous story of Lachit is that how he killed his own maternal uncle and justified his selfless act by saying that his uncle was not greater than the country. As per the story goes, Lachit assigned the task of building an earthern wall for fortification to his uncle. As a strategy that he devised for the war next day, the fort wall needed to be completed before sunrise. To his utter shock, he returned to find an extremely tired and demotivated troop. The bridge too was incomplete. In anger and in fair judgment, he drew his sword and killed his own uncle, without a second thought. This act of selflessness and dedication boosted the morale of the troops.
The relevance of Lachit Borphukan
While Indian politics has been replete with instances of dynasty politics and how today’s leaders can go to any extent to save the skin of their beloved family members, Lachit’s relevance lies in the fact that he had put his country before his family.
However, the biggest relevance of Lachit lies from the fact that he never distinguished his troops on the lines of religion, caste and creed. A unified force comprising of Muslims, Garos, Bodos, Misings, Kacharis, Kalitas, Morans and Chutiyas had fought under his leadership to thwart imperialist invasion from outside. Our country will be a better place to live if we manage to take a leaf or two out of Borphukan’s book.
Follow me at