National Hero Lachit Borphukan Maidam- Holongapar, Jorhat.
Born- 24th November 1622
Died- 25th April 1672
With indomitable courage and shrew tactical intelligence in warfare as his hallmark, Lachit Borphukan established himself as the ablest general of the Assamese royal army during the reign of Ahom King Chakradhwaj Singha (1663-1670). During the reign of Udayaditya Singha, the next Ahom ruler Lachit came to the rescue of his motherland in the historic battle of Saraighat in 1671. The Mughals, still smarting under their defeat at the hands of Ahom forces led by Lachit Barphukan two years back are not taking any chances this time. A large army of “30,000 infantry, 15,000 archers, 18,000 Turkish cavalry, 5,000 gunners and over 1000 cannons besides a large flotilla of boats” is moving up the Brahmaputra towards Guwahati.Displaying impeccable strategical acumen and remarkable velour; he made the mighty Mughal emperor Aurangazeb’s army under the command of Ram Singh, face ignominious defeat.
It is impossible for many people to strain their body to fulfil a higher cause. Even small problems like a headache or stomach ache can bring people’s morale down. These small pains can draw so much of attention that a man forgets about everything else but his pain.When most people’s minds are so weak, only someone driven by exceptional sense of patriotism and love for his people, would forget his intense pain and be ready to sacrifice his life to fulfill the duty of protecting his people. Such was the patriotism of this great Lachit Borphukan. It is recorded that he said – “When my countrymen are suffering from invasion, and when my army is fighting and sacrificing its life, how can I think about resting my body due to a mere illness? How can I think about going home to my wife and children when my entire country is in trouble?” Saying thus, he got out of bed and prepared to fight, despite his illness.
In this battle Lachit demonstrated a rare example of patriotism by beheading his maternal uncle for the latter’s dereliction of duty. With his utterance “My uncle is not dearer than my motherland,” he created a history of sorts by putting duty above self.
Lachit left for the heavenly abode while on his way back to the capital Rongpur in 1672 to participate in the victory celebration of this historic battle. The mortal remains of this brave national hero were cremated at Holongapar in Jorhat district.
24 November is celebrated as “Lachit Divas” across Assam to commemorate the heroism of Lachit Borphukan and the victory of the Assamese army at the Battle of Saraighat. Lachit Barphukan also has a medal named after him that is awarded to the best cadet passing out of the NDA.