State pays tributes to Kiang Nangbah on 157th death anniv

KHNAM calls for recognition of freedom fighters

SHILLONG/GUWAHATI: Khun Hynniewtrep National Awakening Movement (KHNAM) has appealed to the state government to ensure befitting recognition to the contributions and sacrifices of all freedom fighters even as the state, on Monday, observed the 157th death anniversary of the legendary freedom fighter U Kiang Nangbah with traditional and ritualistic fervour.
“On this 157th death anniversary of our freedom fighter U Kiang Nangbah, we appeal to the state government for proper recognition of the sacrifices of all the state’s freedom fighters,” the regional party said in a statement issued on Monday.
“It is sad to see that a special occasion like this ends up with just a note from our honourable chief minister. It is sad to see that the Secretariat building does not have statue of any freedom fighter. While the government spends crores of rupees on festivals but nothing is done for our great leaders who fought the British and gave their lives for the nation,” the statement said. “It is seen that the importance of these leaders has become the responsibility only of a few NGOs. 
The party further said that district councils, too, have done precious little in this regard.
“On this 157 death anniversary of U Kiang Nangbah, we resolve to push the state government and district councils to leave no stone unturned to ensure that generations remember the sacrifices made by the great leaders and to ensure that proper recognition is given to them,” the statement added.
Meanwhile, a programme was organised by the Khasi Students’ Union to commemorate the day.
Members of civil society group and the others attended the programme, which began with the resonance of traditional drum beats to which warriors danced in a circle.
Wreaths and flowers were laid at the life-size statue of the freedom fighter as leaders of various organisations took turns to address the gathering.
Talking to media persons, KSU general secretary Donald V Thabah highlighted the contributions of U Kiang Nongbah for the people and how the younger generations are unaware of them. He said that the KSU saw it fit to honour the brave freedom fighter and erect his statue.
Urban Affairs Minister as well as former KSU leader Hamlet Dohling was also present on the occasion.
It may be mentioned that U Kiang Nangbah was a freedom fighter from Meghalaya who led an uprising against the British.
He was hanged by the British publicly at Iawmusiang in Jowai town in West Jaintia Hills on December 30, 1862. A postage stamp was issued by the Government of India in honour of his contributions.

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