SHILLONG, April 7: Despite bitter-sweet relations between Meghalaya and Assam, Assembly Speaker Metbah Lyngdoh has maintained that the people of Meghalaya are closer and have deeper connection with Assam right from the time when Shillong was the capital of the undivided Assam.
“Assam is like our big brother and all of us look up to it as a leader for advice while raising matters of interest for the Northeastern states with the central government,” the Speaker said in his address at the 84th Foundation Day of the Assam Legislative Assembly on Wednesday.
He also stated almost all Northeastern states were carved out of the Assam Province.
“As per references obtained from different sources, Shillong was declared as the capital of Assam by the British under the control of a Chief Commissioner in 1874. In February of the same year, Shillong began functioning as the capital of newly built Assam Province,” he stated.
While informing that the Assam Legislative Assembly came into existence on April 7, 1937, Metbah said Babu Basanta Kumar Das was its first Speaker under the premiership of Sir Sadullah.
The Meghalaya Speaker also mentioned that Gopinath Bordoloi was one of the first and famous chief ministers of Assam during the Provincial Assembly years of the state.
Meanwhile, Lyngdoh stated that Meghalaya was carved out of the State of Assam on April 2, 1970 as an autonomous State consisting of the former Garo Hills District and United Khasi and Jaintia Hills District of Assam.
“In 1972, the new state of Meghalaya was created with a Legislative House of 60 members. In 1973, the Assam legislature and government moved to Dispur and the Meghalaya Legislative Assembly moved into that building which was the House since 1937,” he said.
Tragically, the old Meghalaya Legislative Assembly was destroyed in the January 9, 2001, fire, Metbah said.
“People have many fond memories and emotional attachment with this historic building. Now we are building a new Assembly building at Mawdiangdiang, New Shillong, which is expected to be completed by early part of 2023,” Lyngdoh told the gathering.