Principal Bhabananda-Nalini Prabha Deka Endowment Lecture
Dutch river scientist Dr Constantin Stere launched Arnab Jan Deka’s Books on Brahmaputra & Docu Film
GUWAHATI: Internationally acclaimed river scientist, hydraulics expert and author Dr Constantin Aurel Stere from The Netherlands officially launched award-winning popular storywriter and river engineer Arnab Jan Deka’s two English books namely Brahmaputra and Beyond : Linking Assam to the World andAn Extraordinary Assamese Couple : Socio-Literary Contributions of Principal Bhabananda Deka & Nalini Prabha Deka at Guwahati Press Club on 28 Feb 2015, and inaugurated the press-show of a short documentary film The Pioneer Assam Economist-Litterateur directed by Arnab Jan Deka. The celebrated Dutch scientist-author Dr Stere also delivered the first Principal Bhabananda Deka & Nalini Prabha Deka Endowment Lecture on the present and future of Brahmaputra. Earlier, he lit the traditional ceremonial lamp in front of the portrait of the litterateur-couple and prayed for eternal peace of their departed soul.
The award-winning author-engineer Arnab Jan Deka’s both the books released contain a great unifying element in promoting true essence of the mighty Brahmaputra and the riverine people of Assam to the rest of the world. The books highlight various international collaborative efforts over the years relating to Assam in the fields of art, literature, archaeology, environment and technology and the important pioneering roles played by an Assamese traditional litterateur couple, who nurtured Assamese traditions and promoted them through intellectual and social contributions of historical significance. They made traditional handloom unit Taat-Xaal and crop grinding tool Dheki as domestic tools of everyday use at their city homes in Guwahati and New Delhi for producing their own fabrics and food, and also religiously followed the tradition of wearing Assamese traditional hand-woven fabrics like Suriyaa-Saapkon andMekhela-Chador as their garments of everyday use. Besides, both of them authored more than one hundred and fifty books encompassing subjects like Assam’s economy, social life, rural traditions and heritage, and also practiced a lifestyle based on inter-religious harmony and gender-equality.
Dr Constantin Aurel Stere delivering the first Endowment Lecture in memory of Principal Bhabananda Deka and Nalini Prabha Deka spoke highly about the extraordinary talent and vision of writer and engineer Arnab Jan Deka in carrying forward the technology and art together in sublime linking essence of Brahmaputra and projecting it to an interested world, and hoped that his books and films will play pivotal roles for creating better understanding about Assam and Assamese in the rest of the world. Dr Stere also paid glowing tributes in memory of Assamese author-couple and hoped that the world will soon become aware of the historic roles played by them over the last half a century and more in promoting Assamese traditional lifestyle, art and literature and due recognition would be given to these unsung heroes.
Dr Stere, who was a Professor of hydraulics engineering in Technical University of Civil Engineering in Romania and University of West Indies, worked as International Team Leader in various projects of UNESCO, EUROPEAN COMMISSION, World Bank, Asian Development Bank and Spanish-Dutch-British Consortium relating to river and coastal engineering in more than 30 countries including Venezuela, Columbia, Romanía, Iran, The Netherlands, Brazil, West Indies, Dubai, Spain, UK, Dominican Republic, Martinique, Granada, St. Vincent & Grenadines, Canada, Dominica, Portugal, St.Kitts &Nevis, St. Lucia, Australia, Honduras, USA, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, France, Marocco, Ecuador, Vietnam, Chile, Uruguay, Armenia, Belgium, Germany and Iraq besides Brahmaputra river in India and Bangladesh. His presence and lively interaction at the programme had enhanced the entire programme.
Press Release issued by Assam Foundation-India, a registered NGO(Registration No. RS/KAM/240/H/287 of 1998-99), E-mail : [email protected]