Sunday Monitor

Taking Assamese culture beyond boundaries

Samiran Bhuyan

Writer Arup Saikia is trying to put into writing various cultural works (performance of Bhaona) that he has done in his life. This is a kind collection of writings that showcases the challenges and obstacles of an artist compiled in a book form.


While studying at the University of Delhi, Saikia was introduced to the vast and multifaceted Indian culture. Bharali to Volga is on such challenging stories of real experience originated in the name of ‘Bhaona Unmesh’ (Budding of Bhaona).

Bharali to Volga narrates the journey of protests for justice against powerful enemies. Saikia is a preacher of Sankari culture. He has translated several plays of Ankia Nat in Brajavali language by Srimanta Sankardeva into English. He is the first performer of the Assamese Bhaona in English. The author has taken the timely experience of various conflicts in Bharali to Volga. Through the cultural performance across the continent, the writer looks at the national identity of Assam from a new cultural perspective as the main subject of the book.

The book contains various speeches of the writer on cultural performances and comparative experiences in Sankari philosophy in different countries of the world.

Saikia stresses revolutionary zeal as the fundamental being of an artiste. Jyoti Prasad Aggarwal is the ideal of revolutionary consciousness like the two great Assamese saints — Sankerdev and Madhabdev. Revolutionary thoughts and artistic consciousness are symbols of honesty and the message of Sankerdev echoes from Bharali to Volga. The people of Assam have to move forward through this cultural revolution.

Saikia expects that the book Bharali to Volga will wake up as a revolutionary in the hearts of readers to dispel the darkness of society. Worldwide promotion and propagation of Assamese culture are described here. The Bharali represents the writer’s working field in Assam and the Volga epitomises the intercontinental spread of our Assamese traditional culture (Bhaona).

Saikia faced a lot of hardships and resistance while embarking on a cultural revolution from Bharali to Volga. People of fundamentalist outlook easily cannot accept the change for the better. Change always begets beauty and beauty gives birth to culture. An artiste of beauty cannot remain silent for long. Saikia is a people’s artiste who wants to transform people’s trust to struggle for emancipation from the dogmatic outlook.

The life of a struggling artiste means the barrier one has to overcome to accomplish the desired mission. Though that mission is initiated by a true artiste, the concept is hidden in the souls of the people. The power to spontaneously align the living history conducive to a humane atmosphere is adroitness of art.

Besides culture, extensive historical research has been done on the formation and development of the Assamese community. Who are Assamese? How are they Aryanised or assimilated with people of pan-Bharat culture? Renowned scholar Late Kapila Vatsyayan is shown as an inspirational patron in many intellectually crucial matters or tasks of the writer. The chapters of this book may confuse usual readers because the sequence is not easy to comprehend. But serious readers can feel or sense the interlink.

Book: Bharali to Volga; Author: Arup Saikia; Publisher: ; Pages: 126; Price:

(The author is a writer, cultural activist and motivational speaker)

Related Articles

Back to top button

Adblock Detected

Kindly Disable Ad Blocker