PASIGHAT ( By-Maksam Tayeng )- While demanding a due recognition for martyrs of Anglo Abor war from state and central government, the Adi Baane Kebang Women Wing (ABWW) has appealed the government for establishment of a common war memorial for all the martyrs who sacrificed their lives for the cause of Independence from Britisers during Indian freedom movement.
Visiting the four war memorials of martyrs Lt. Lutnyung Megu at Silluk village war memorial, late Borkeng Tayeng and late Kebo Tayeng at Abor Liireng (war memorial), Ayeng village, Lt. Ketong Perme, Lt. Kebang Perme and Lt. Mutling Perme at Miidu Lireng (war memorial) Yeling Yetek place in between Bodak and Raneghat here in East Siang district and Lt. Kengki Megu war memorial at Pimpu Dota place in between Padu and Damro village in Upper Siang District, ABKWW President, Olen Megu Damin said that all the war heroes’ memorial should be constructed in a common war memorial where a war museum is also needed to display the war weapons, spears and others used by freedom fighters during the Anglo Abor war to fight against the British occupation of Adi areas.
At Silluk village Lt. Lutnyung Megu war memorial, ABKWW President was joined by Silluk village Gaon Burah, Asik Yirang along with village elders Mading Pertin, Toktel Ratan who also joined in the voice of ABKWW in demanding and need of a common war memorial for all martyrs.
While Oni Tayeng with his wife of Ayeng village joined with ABKWW at Abor Liireng war memorial, Ayeng village echoed the same for better upkeeping and due recognition of all martyrs of Anglo Abor Wars. Reiterating the same again Olen Megu Damin strongly appealed the state and central government to give due recognition to the martyrs of Adi community of Arunachal Pradesh like Late Lutnyung Megu, Late Borkeng Tayeng, Late Kebo Tayeng, Late Kebang Perme, Late Ketong Perme, Late Mutling Perme, Late Kengki Megu, Late Matmur Jamoh, Late Lomlo Darang, Late Bapok Jerang, Late Kongkir Siram, Late Tajong Tamuk and many others.
Among the four Anglo Abor Wars namely Bitbor Mimak, Bongal Mimak, Mijom Mimak and Poju Mimak, the 3rd war Mijom Mimak (1893-94) was most remarkable where Britishers led by APO Sadiya JF Needham along with his sepoys equipped with artilleries set on to Abor lands Bomjir, Dambuk, Silluk (Lukku), Mebo, Ayeng and set up a base camp near present Bodak village called “Yeling-Yetek” a place where the hills and a plain area conjoins for onward expedition to Damro village, the nerve and command centre of Padam Adis.
However, the unprecedented resistance offered by the defending freedom fighters led to non-accomplishment of the mission of British rulers and shameful retreat of their arm forces from the upper land of Bor Abors after which no other attempts were made to suppress the Bor Abors militarily, except by diplomatic means allurement and economic sanctions till attainment of independence.
All these martyrs laid down their lives while defending their people and homeland against the invasion of the then British forces, who undertook the ”Abor Expedition” with sole objective to punish the Bor Abors of present Damro Village under Mariyang Sub-Division in Upper Siang District for their un-submissive, aggressive, and ungovernable attitude and these fighters contemplated to repeal the advancing British force from their Village itself by use of force. It was their absolute bravery and patriotism to revolt against the imperial hegemony for independence and self governance at the time when the freedom struggle was mounting in other parts of the country.
These war memorials are the testimonies of Adi community’s freedom fighters wholehearted participation in India’s freedom movement where they fought wars against Britishers at places like Bomjir, Dambuk (under Lower Dibang Valley district), Siluk, Mebo, Ayeng, Yeling Yetek (under Mebo Sub-Division, East Siang District), Pimpu-Dota on the left bank of Yamne River near Sijon located between Padu and Damroh villages (under Mariyang Sub-division in Upper Siang) Komsing and Kekar Monying places under Siang District.
But despite such gallantry fighting and heroic deeds against Britishers by these martyrs in love of their motherland when rest of the country in entire India was fighting for freedom after the failed sepoy mutiny of 1857, they have never been recognized nor any historians recorded their sacrifices and gallantry in their books reason best known to them.
There are many unsung heroes of Anglo Abor wars in Adi (Abor) belt, however, despite substantial documentary evidence; our great fore-fathers who sacrificed their lives for India’s Independence have not been recognized officially as freedom fighters till date. Hence, it is the prerogative of the state government to get these war heroes of the state recognized by setting up a common War Memorial for all martyrs where a Museum be also attached as appealed by ABKWW while displaying the historical records of the Adi warriors/martyrs which in turn could later become a tourist’s and researcher’s attraction.