Lachit Borphukan: The Savior of Assam

The mighty commander-in-chief: Lachit Borphukan

One of our greatest teachers is history. It holds tales of told and untold heroes, who teach us to be brave and face our obstacles by never giving up even in life’s toughest circumstances. They inspire people by their bravery and valor by setting an example. Today, we are seeping a bit into history, and digging out someone who needs to be remembered by the new generation. Hence, let me put forth a couple of paragraphs together on ‘LACHIT BORPHUKAN: The Savior of Assam’…

SPOILER: Stick to the end to find 5 bonus facts!!!

Every state or country has its own tales of valor and patriotism. Assam is also proud to have their own brave commander-in-chief in history, whose name obviously we can never forget, as he’s simply the warrior of warriors!

In 1671, Lachit Borphukan fought the epic battle of Saraighat and defeated the Mughals who were successful in invading the rest of India, but not Assam. King Aurangzeb repeatedly attacked Assam in hopes of conquering it, but in vain. 17 such attempts and they still didn’t succeed!!

The Ahom warriors were excellent naval fighters. Just before the day of the battle, Lachit Borphukan ordered that a big boundary of sand be laid, blocking the roadways so that the Mughals could be made bound to march ahead through the waterways of the mighty river Brahmaputra. Borphukan gave this duty to his maternal uncle, and asked him to finish the job within the night, for the enemy party might attack anytime soon. But his uncle showed negligence in his duty and excused himself by saying he was tired. Now, isn’t it very bad to ward off immediate and important duties without any actual reason? Lachit was furious and he abolished his uncle from his post by saying, “Dexot koi mur momai dangor nohoi!” which translates to, “My uncle is not greater than my own country!”. This also shows that Assam that time was untouched by nepotism. This incident, along with his bravery on the war field, made him known to everyone as ‘the hero of Assam’.

This was how the mounted upon boats and fought bravely…

Moreover, during the battle, he was suffering from severe attacks of fever, and was hence bedridden. Seeing their leader falling slowly, soldiers said that they were losing confidence. But Lachit didn’t want this to happen. He ordered his men, “Mount my bed on the boat, and I shall fight till the very last breath”. He fought bravely and his patriotic fight saved Assam from being captured in the late 17th century. But because of his frail health, he died soon after winning the battle.

This all was what I knew or searched on the internet. I wouldn’t say that everything I say would always be right; in case I’m wrong, please inform me. (History can be very tricky sometimes, especially when something is said to have happened, but no recorded evidence is there in support of it.) I don’t want to preach because I’m no historian, but I wanted to share this as I found it very intriguing.

  1. ‘MomaiTamuli Borbarua’ was the name of Lachit’s maternal uncle.
  2. Lachit Borphukan died on 25th April, 1672.
  3. 24th November marks as ‘Lachit Diwas’, and is celebrated in Assam every year.
  4. The swords used by the Ahoms was called ‘Hengdang’.

5. Since 1999, the National Defense Academy (NDA) has been awarding the best passing cadet with ‘Lachit Borphuakn Gold Medal’.

At the end, I would ask everyone to respect everybody else, even unsung heroes…

Thank you 😀

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