Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma unveiled a statue of Dr Syama Prasad Mookerjee, the founding father of the now ruling Bharatiya Janata Party at Barpeta Road in the western Assam, on the latter’s 120th birth anniversary.
Speaking on the occasion, CM Sarma said Dr Mookerjee was a great lover of Assam and that he had introduced study of Assamese language in Calcutta University where he became the youngest vice Chancellor at the age of 33.
“Dr Syama Prasad Mookerjee had travelled through Assam and on returning back to Bengal, advocated Assamese language to be the official language of the state and urged everyone who resides in Assam to learn Assamese language,” Sarma said.
He further said, “In 1935, Calcutta University introduced Assamese as a modern language and Birinchi Kumar Barua, the first Assamese was appointed as a teacher in Calcutta University. Dr Mookerjee, the then vice Chancellor of Calcutta University advocated the name of Birinchi Kumar Barua as the teacher in Calcutta University.”
Dr. Mookerjee, who also held the Ministry of Industry and Supply under Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru in the country’s first cabinet, had resigned in 1950 over his differences with Nehru regarding the 1950 Delhi Pact signed between Nehru and the then Pakistan Prime Minister Liaqat Ali Khan that paved way for setting up of minority boards in both the countries for displaced refugees.
Dr Mookerjee, then formed Bharatiya Jana Sangha as a political wing to the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangha (RSS) and had allied with several other anti-Congress fronts. But, in 1977, it broke out of alliance and in 1980, 27 years after Mookerjee’s demise on June 23, 1953 at Kashmir, Bharatiya Janta Party was officially formed.