Gopinath Bordoloi, the Chief Minister of Assam before independence and the first Chief Minister of the state after independence was born on 6 June 1890.In today’s edition of This Day in History, you can read about the life and contribution of Freedom Fighter Gopinath Bordolo who took part in most famous Satyagraha and Non-Cooperation Movement.
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Gopinath Bordoloi – Brief History
- Gopinath Bordoloi was born on 6th June 1890 to Buddheswar and Praneswari Bordoloi at Raha in Assam.
- After finishing his matriculation in 1907, he studied at Cotton College and then at the famous Scottish Church College in Calcutta. After this, he secured an MA degree from the Calcutta University in 1914.
- Later on, he studied law and started a legal practice in Guwahati.
- In 1922, Bordoloi joined the Indian National Congress and entered politics.
- He was a follower of Mahatma Gandhi and took part in the various Satyagraha movements. He was arrested in 1922 itself owing to his participation in the Non-cooperation Movement.
- From 1930 onwards, for three years, he stayed away from politics. After that, he became a member of the Guwahati Municipal Board and Local Board. He was an active social worker.
- He was a persistent advocate for a separate High Court and a university for Assam.
- After the Government of India Act 1935 proposed provincial elections in the country, elections were held in Assam in 1936. Bordoloi got elected and became the Leader of the Opposition in the Assembly.
- Even though the INC had acquired a majority, a dubious law prevented them from forming the government. Muhammad Sadulla headed the government. However, his government resigned in 1938 and then Bordoloi was invited to form the government by the Governor.
- After becoming the Prime Minister of Assam, Bordoloi showed his dedication to the people of Assam. He stopped the Land Tax. He also safeguarded the rights of the indigenous peoples of Assam by stopping land grants to migrant Muslims.
- Bordoloi’s cabinet resigned in 1940 when all INC governments resigned when India was forced into the World War II by the British without consultation. He was arrested during the Quit India Movement. Meanwhile, Sadulla had formed the government.
- In 1946, after the central government had decided to grant India independence and conducted elections to form the Interim Government, Bordoloi was appointed the Prime Minister of Assam.
- After the Mountbatten Plan of 1947 intended the partition of the country, Bordoloi worked intensely for the inclusion of Assam into India. Muslim League leaders were trying to acquire Assam as part of East Pakistan. It was because of Bordoloi’s determination and vision that Assam became a part of India.
- After independence, he organised the rehabilitation of millions of refugees who had come from the newly-created Pakistan to Assam escaping violence and communal hatred.
- Bordoloi was honoured by the title ‘Lokapriya’ by Jayram Das Doulatram. He died on 5 August 1950 aged 60.
- He was conferred the Bharat Ratna posthumously in 1999 by A B Vajpayee. In 2002, his life-size statue was unveiled in the Parliament House by APJ Abdul Kalam.
Also on this Day
1944: D-Day or the Normandy Landings during the Second World War, which was a seaborne invasion of German Nazi-occupied north-western Europe by the Allies. This invasion marked the beginnings of the allied victory.
See previous ‘This Day in History’ here.