Who is Bir Lachit Borphukan?
Lachit Borphukan (24th November 1622 — 25th April 1672) was the famous General of the Royal Army of the Ahom Kingdom of Assam who defeated the Mughals and successfully halted the ever-expanding ambitions of the Mughals under Aurangzeb.
Lachit Borphukan, a great warrior of the Ahom (Assam) kingdom, is known for his exceptional leadership in the 1671 ‘Battle of Saraighat’ on the Brahmaputra. He thwarted the attempt of the mighty Mughal army to take back Assam.
Lachit Borphukan: The Shivaji of the Northeast
What has been the reason due to why he was called ‘Shivaji of North East’? Actually, Lachit Borphukan’s real name was Lachit while Borphukan was his title. Lachit has also been called the Shivaji of the Northeast. The mere mention of the surname of Chhatrapati Shivaji is enough to tell how effective Lachit’s bravery was in the public mind.
This is the reason why Lachit Diwas is celebrated even today on 24th November commemorating the performance of Borphukan and the Assamese army in the form of the Battle of Sarai Ghat.
Not only this, the gold medal awarded to the best cadet at the National Defense Academy is still given by the name “Lachit Medal”. Many such incidents are recorded in the history of India in the name of Lachit Borphukan. The most important of these was the ‘Battle of Saraighat‘.
What happened in the battle of Saraighat?
The 17th century saw several skirmishes between the Mughals and the Ahoms who wanted to expand their empire in the east.
Whose kingdom extended up to the Brahmaputra valley in Assam and lasted for about 600 years. Borphukan was the commander of the Ahom forces during the Battle of Saraighat fought on the banks of the Brahmaputra in Guwahati.
The battle, which took place during the reign of the Mughal emperor Aurangzeb, was seen as a decisive Ahom victory.
Lachit Borphukan’s Brave Leadership in Battle
Historians tell that this was the period when every warrior of Hindu Swarajya was ready to kill the Mughals and wanted to free the land of independent India from external invaders by any means.
While the terror of the Mughals in the country was faced by the Rajput army of Rajasthan under the leadership of Maharana Pratap in north-west India, Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj in the south destroyed the Mughal rule.
At the same time, in the north-eastern corner of India, the Hindu Swarajya army was engaged in thwarting the plans of the Mughals from its own level and Lachit Borphukan was leading the rebellion there.
Who does not know about the battle of Saraighat in the northeastern state of India, Assam, in which the Mughal army protected its motherland overnight by taking the lives of about 4,000 soldiers.
Sarai Ghat: The Location of the Historic Battle
Sarai Ghat is the part of Brahmaputra river in Guwahati in Assam where Lachit fought the historic battle
Sarai Ghat is part of the Brahmaputra river near Guwahati in Assam where Lachit Borphukan fought this historic battle with the Mughal army.
It was at this place in the 16th century that the Ahom Hindu kingdom under the leadership of Senapati Borphukan defeated the Mughals.
The supremacy of this empire spread over the entire area around Guwahati so much that the Mughal army came many times with the intention of conquering it, but turned back after eating it.
The Ahom Hindu kingdom challenged Aurangzeb and snatched away the Itakuli fort of Guwahati from Aurangzeb’s possession. Aurangzeb’s army was badly defeated and Aurangzeb got upset.
In 1671, the Mughal army again advanced towards the home Hindu kingdom to regain that fort, but under the leadership of Lachit, those advanced steps were cut and flowed into the Brahmaputra river. Lachit’s efficient leadership had no equal
There was no doubt that Lachit was a skilled commander and extremely brave. Lachit’s Ahom army, with a mere 6,000 soldiers, had a strong navy and a full force of skilled spies.
Where on one hand no one could defeat him in the forests of Assam, on the other hand, the Brahmaputra stream used to change its direction at the behest of Lachit.
Lachit’s army of only 6,000 soldiers showed war skills while stopping the Mughals’ invasion, thousands of soldiers standing on the front line of the Mughal army were sacrificed by the Brahmaputra river. The remaining army ran away by crossing the Manas river to save their lives.
The most effective in this was the small boats present in Lachit’s navy, which were called Bacharina. The small boats proved too heavy for the bigger ships of the Mughals.
Experts tell that the battle of Sarai Ghat was surrounded by a triangle on the edge of the river Brahmaputra. On one side was the temple of Kamakhya Devi, on the other side was the Vishnu Mantra of Ashvaklanta and on the third side were the walls of the Itakuli fort.
The Mughals, who came with the intention of ruling the Ahom Hindu kingdom, were surrounded and killed in this triangle and were scared away from the battlefield.
The Prime Minister also released the book – ‘Lachit Borphukan – Assam’s Hero who Halted the Mughals’ Last year. You can Download Lachit Barphukan (500 words)-An essay.
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