When heroes are remembered just before polls


It's been almost 25 years since Bodofa Upendranath Brahma, the father of the Bodos passed away while spearheading the Bodo movement as the leader of the All Bodo Students' Union(ABSU) in the 80s. Having a model village in honour of the leader, as announced by the ABSU on his birth anniversary on March 31, may be quite apt to come around after such a long period.

However, when it comes to model villages this may not be the first in the Northeast, Chinatolly village in Assam's Golaghat district, Longman village in Arunachal's Changlang district and Mawlynnong village in Meghalaya's East Khasi Hills district are examples of such model villages.

Boragari, the village where Brahma was born, is in a very dilapidated state with mud houses, narrow potholed streets, and no drainage system or running water. The village has been neglected and has not seen much development all these years despite the BTC has been so believed to be flourishing.

It's sad to see that the village where the great leader came from is in shambles, knowing that the Bodo movement has had a great history from the Dotma area. Speaking on the 59th birth anniversary of Bodofa, observed by the ABSU at Tulungapuri in Dotma, the union's president Pramod Boro expressed concern over the condition of village where Bodofa was born.

The union has decided to turn Boragari and surrounding areas into an ideal village, with proper road connectivity. But why has this take so long? and why now? Some critics may think that this may be to do with garnering votes as the BTC polls are around the corner, while some may feel that ABSU are finally paying respect to the long forgotten leader, as corruption has engulfed the BTAD areas.

In the end for many Bodos like me who remember the Bodofa but necessarily through the prism of Politics, it is a sad reminder that today great figures like him have become a tool for political rhetoric. I would think just like many known people from the region and state Upendranath Brahma was not just a leader of the Bodos but also a personality to be reckoned with within the region.

Sadly the exalted one is to be remembered only before elections, ironically as it may sound he is still the most cashable figure to all politicians and activists.

Geetartha Mushahary