Prime Minister Narendra Modi has said that public participation has heralded a change for the better in Assam. He said that the people’s movement has protected the cultural heritage of Assam and its pride, and it is this movement that is now spearheading a development story of the State. He said this while recalling the journey of the vernacular daily Dainik Agradoot which stepped into its golden jubilee year recently.
Addressing the gathering, the Prime Minister termed the newspaper as the ‘strong voice of the Northeast in the Assamese language’ and complimented it for keeping the values of unity and harmony alive.
He said that under the guidance of its founder editor Kanak Sen Deka, the newspaper has kept national interest paramount. “Even during the Emergency, when the biggest attack on democracy took place, Agradoot and Deka ji did not compromise on journalistic values. He created a new generation of value-based journalism”, the Prime Minister said.
“Assam has played a key role in the development of language journalism in India. The State has been a very vibrant place from the point of view of journalism. Journalism started 150 years ago in the Assamese language and kept on getting stronger with time”, Modi told the gathering in his virtual address.
Talking to Asom Barta, Deka said that the Assamese society has been going through a crucial phase post-the Assam Movement of 1979 wherein several challenges were faced while practising the profession in the State.
Also present on the occasion were Assam Chief Minister Dr. Himanta Biswa Sarma, his Cabinet colleagues, State Agriculture Minister Atul Bora, Health Minister Keshab Mahanta, Water Resources and I&PR Minister Pijush Hazarika.
Dr. Sarma said that Kanak Sen Deka has transformed Dainik Agradoot as an asset of Assamese society.