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Arunachal: Tapir Gao unveils Jotem-Joran war memorial at Bongal Yapgo

The war memorial is located along the road side of National Highway-52 and the location area has a significance of its war memorials .....

DAMBUK- ( By Maksam Tayeng ) On the occasion of Azadi ka Amrit Mahotsav  commemorating the 75th Year of India’s Independence, Lok Sabha MP from Eastern Arunachal Parliamentary Constituency, Tapir Gao today unveiled ‘Jotem-Joran War Memorial’ erected by Modi Welfare Society in memory of Anglo-Abor war hero of 1894 from Modi clan namely Lt. Jotem Modi and Lt. Oram Modi at Yapgo village of Dambuk Sub-Division in Lower Dibang Valley district in the presence of Dambuk MLA, Smti Gum Tayeng, Dy. Commissioner Lower Dibang Valley, Soumya Saurabh, Tony Borang, ZPC Lower Dibang Valley, Modi Welfare Society President, Dr. Milorai Modi, Organizing President, Nanokong Modi, Committee Engineer, Leksar Modi and other officials and public leaders.

The war memorial is located along the road side of National Highway-52 and the location area has a significance of its war memorials Bongal Yapgo where the freedom fighters from Adi communities fought against the marauding Britüsh forces in this Bongal Yapgo,  Dambuk on 21st January 1894. On 14th January 1894, the British punitive expeditionary forces attacked and burned down the village of Bomjir and advanced towards Dambuk.

Jotem Modi being an active member of the village participate wholeheartedly in the preparation for the impending war along with the villagers positioned themselves behind the formidable stockade towards south of the village settlement area. As per the oral history middle brother Jomat Modi was advised by his parents not to actively participate in the war at the front and was to look after his old parent, household & other domestic properties fearing losing all three sons in the battle. So, the middle son was prevented from going in the stockade area and had to hide in the jungle along with old parents important domestic properties while eldest and youngest were allowed to participate.

During the first day of attack on 20th January 1894, Jotem Modi at the forefront of the battle was injured in his right leg by shell fire & was shifted under a big tree name “LOKNE” situated nearby jungle where all the injured were rested taken care of. He had to take rest there for a while as he was bleeding profusely and later lost consciousness. He lay there for more than three days and was somehow left unhurt by the invading army maybe assuming dead.

While the youngest brother Joran Modi too participated in the village resistance group, was killed by bullet shots on the 2nd day of the shellfire unleashed upon the villagers. Along with Jomat Modi the elder brother Jotem Modi survived the war miraculously with grievous injury sustained in one of his legs and could walk somehow in a crippled manner, returned to village after the invading soldiers had left towards Silluk. However, injuries made during the war were not healed under such circumstances, Jotem Modi died after a few months.

After the defeat of resisting Abors at Dambuk, the British invading forces moved further towards Silluk, Mebo and beyond. However, they failed to reach the major Padam village of Damroh during their expedition to punish the Arbors in 1894 during the Anglo-Abor war.

Tapir Gao, MP and Dambuk MLA, Gum Tayeng and ZPC Tony Borang spoke at length about the role of Adis (Abors) in the Anglo-Abor war against the Britishers and Gao opined hope that the war heroes from the state of Arunachal Pradesh will get the due recognition of freedom fighter under Modi government which is giving due credit to all those who really fought for India’s independence.

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