Education is not limited to a person knowing how to read and write; it goes beyond that. Nelson Mandela once said, "Education is the most powerful weapon that you can use to change the world." Indeed, education does not just boost our knowledge but benefits a person in many aspects. It improves our critical thinking, teaches us empowerment and skills, builds character, strengthens the human mind, increases self-confidence and assists in developing the personality of a person, which are required by an individual's growth as a person. The human mind is created to train, and without education, the person is incomplete. It teaches us to look at life differently. It is essential for the right path in life. As the developing world requires more educated employees who are paid highly, they work manually on the construction sites. We can say that education provides you with stable jobs and better job opportunities. And always remember that education is not age-limited. A person can gain knowledge and study throughout their entire life.
Modern education's aims are to increase productivity by bringing out the concept of learning without burden by reducing the syllabus. To develop national unity, consolidate democracy by making education available for every child without any discrimination.
The development of education is very important for the development of a country and a society. It upgrades the thinking of society, helps to uproot inequalities, social evils, etc. It enhances the social and moral values of a person and makes that person more sensible, tolerant, helpful, and empathic.
But was it always there in our early lives? When did the tribal communities get educational opportunities?
In this article, we will look into the evolution of education in the Bodo community from the colonization period.
The Boros are one of the largest aboriginal tribes living mainly near the Brahmaputra valley of Assam, even before the beginning of the Ahom Dynasty. They possess a rich sociocultural tradition along with a solid language. Before the early 19th century, the Bodo people, along with other tribes, were backwards in their knowledge of education and were not provided with it as it was believed that only brahmins were the only one to have rights to education and knowledge. The British intervention in Assam in the 19th century brought a ray of educational hope which reached them as the British government adopted their education policy in Assam. It cannot be denied that the Christian missionaries have also played an important part in spreading western education among the tribal people through their evangelical objectives.
The missionaries established many schools in the remote areas of the Bodo populated areas to spread education among them. Besides these, they left many literary activities among the Bodos to awaken the educated elite sections of the Bodos to propagate social reform movements by the means of literacy activities. This led to a fruitful future when, in 1924, the first Bodo magazine, Bibar, was published by Mr. Satish Chandra Basumatry. Bibar laisi (a magazine) has a total of eight volumes. He was also the editor of it and was the second president of the Bodo Sahitya Sabha in the Bibar era (the age of the renaissance of Bodo literature).
The journal covered topics related to religion, ethics, culture, and morality, along with a poetry section. After Bibar, many magazines like Jenthoka, Alongbar, etc. This process of literacy development among the Bodos stimulated the trend of social awakening and encouraged the new generation. Along with all these, the development of Guwahati as a city played an important role as many Bodo people shifted from the villages to here for higher education, jobs, and opportunities.
(Image courtesy of bododimasaarchive.org)
Many tribal households are not able to afford to send their children for proper education due to lack of money and being financially unstable. The government has issued Articles, Laws, and Acts to prompt their education and bring them to the light of the current world. The government launched Rajiv Gandhi National Fellowship whose objective is to provide fellowships in the form of financial assistance to students belonging to the ST’s to pursue higher studies such as M.Phil and Ph.
Currently, the governor of Assam, Jagdish Mukhi, launched the "Bodoland Super Mission 50", which is an initiative of Bodoland Territorial Region chief Pramod Boro to prepare Bodo youths for competitive examinations by providing them with eleven months of high-quality free residential coaching and mentorship.
According to the official statement on the project of the Bodoland Territorial Region (BTR), the administration aims at transforming the lives of engineering aspirants coming from economically weaker sections of the five Bodo-dominated districts of Assam. This is good news for those economically weaker Bodo families who want their children to grow, and the government is providing them with their full support. With this education and knowledge, and with the students' interest, there is no doubt they can achieve a brighter future with education and knowledge.
(Credits to Twitter)
Finally, it can be concluded that development has become an essential element of people's daily lives and that everyone should have access to it for the greater development of the brains, thoughts, country, and youth's future.
We are sharing our rich heritage through this platform, starting with the cultural preservation efforts by voices of indigenous communities themselves.