Once in a life time the occasion like celebration of “Centenary” comes. This brings renewed enthusiasm and cheers among the people as this provides an avenue for everyone a scope to introspect and interpret. The society remembers their forefathers who were once instrumental in making the present through their relentless efforts and selfless involvement and attachment. Sunaram Soren (February 4, 1918 - July 19, 1988) was such a stalwart who was a harbinger of social as well as political consciousness among the tribals in general and Santals in particular. People generally see individual accomplishment through career progression but some exceptions are there where the common interest of the society supersedes the individual aspirations and achievements. Gomke Sunaram Soren was having such charisma which earned him a popular title “Bhurkag Ipil meaning Lodestar”. The centenary year falls within a period beginning February 04, 2017 to February 04, 2018. It is naturally expected that there would be some initiatives from some quarters. This initiative is directed towards that to propagate, promote and popularize the ensuing centenary.


The purpose is to make an attempt to create an atmosphere to remember our previous generations who had contributed immensely for the development of the society. This is also an occasion to establish benchmark and processes for the next generation to imbibe and follow. This is to show the recognition of good works being done in the past and to inspire for the same kind of activities in the present time. This will bond together the past with the preset and there will be a sense of responsibility in the continuum. The process of dissemination is an inseparable part in any developing society. The message must spread in order to have an overall impact and influence in the society.


Participation of all is the most favoured mode to organize this kind of event. Some organizations are continuing to celebrate the birth anniversary and they are expected to continue the same this year also. The extent and level of participation should be upto the grassroots level. The sharing of information and event upto the grassroots level and their direct and indirect involvement should be ensured during this event. At least no one should be left without knowing the purpose and programmes of the event.


Keeping in mind the requirement, the information has been shared with many people particularly the known addressee. It is hoped that the message will be spread further among the peer groups and in this digitized world message spreads fast. The benefits of use of Internet, networking apps come handy in communicating with each other. The limits of distance and location have been overcome and people can hold conferences everyday. The remedy to physical barrier has been successfully addressed. It is possible to keep in touch with each one on daily basis. The group activities can be monitored and mentored through close liaison and attention. This is a unique opportunity on the part of the general public to show their attachment, reverence and involvement to the great leader. It is expected that Government of Odisha will have some programmes to mark the occasion through proper celebration and action plans. The Ministers and leaders would be involved in such activities through official programmes. Generally it is observed that the participation of others affiliated to some political nomenclatures/groups becomes an issue. In order to mark this occasion through a broad based endeavour, initiative is being taken where everyone has the opportunity to express her/him self and participate in a cordial atmosphere. In order to involve a wide cross section of people a WhatsApp group “Sunaram Soren Centenary” has been formed. The purpose of forming this group is to elicit valuable suggestions so that we can celebrate this occasion in a befitting manner. All India ASECA is of the opinion that this event should be organised as was done during "Guru Gomke Centenary in 2005". It is expected that everybody will share their opinion in this group for mutual benefit and understanding. The numbers of any other interested persons in the knowledge and personal address book may be sent through SMS/email. The e-mail id: shall be our common platform. Some understanding and realisation till now for better appreciation of all are being shared. 1. After the start of the “Sunaram Soren Centenary” WhatsApp group, barring few, everybody remained in the group which shows sense of responsibility. It may be noted that prior consent was not obtained and it started with the available contacts. 2. It was expected that if each individual member adds at least five members from his/ her group, the strength would be at least 500. It is also possible to have 1000 members for the celebration (not only WhatsApp group). But it hasn't happened. It was also expected that some of our members would add their grown up children. This is required to make them partners in this kind of initiative for our collective life and welfare. So it is expected that more and more new members would be added in the group. 3. This initiative is in addition to the programs of the government. It's the common citizens' tribute to our great forefathers. Everybody may be associated or become part of the official celebration. So this is the forum which would give every individual a space and opportunity to involve her/him self directly or indirectly. All are requested to feel free to consult on the subject. 4. Going by the income of people, 10000 rupees can easily be donated if there is a will. So presently, we can collect 10 lakh rupees with 100 people, 50 lakh rupees with 500 people and so on. 5. Committee will be formed with the people who are involved in the process and it will be worthwhile then to chalk out plans and programmes. 6. Detailed proposal will be drafted based on the responses and for this all are requested to inform about their contributions.


It has been envisaged to install a life size bronze statue and a conference hall/cultural centre for interaction of rural and urban population and promotion of arts and culture. The need for a conference hall / cultural centre is as follows: 1. To develop a facility for inter interaction of the members of traditional village representatives called by pargana, majhi, naike, jagmajhi, godet, paranik or any other nomenclature as well as with discerning persons, towards building a healthy and progressive society. 2. To provide a platform for revitalization of traditional Santal Institutions, art and culture forms. 3. To use the facility for training, advancement and research of Culture. 4. To promote peace, prosperity, brotherhood and understanding among various groups of people 5. To collect and preserve art, cultural artifacts, dance, drama and song forms. 6. To spread the message of sacrifice and heroic struggle of the tribal leaders, freedom fighters so as to accord equal status and recognition to these leaders along with other freedom fighters and social leaders. 7. To generate interest and create awareness among the people about Santal Culture and art forms. 8. To organize periodic meetings/ workshops/ seminars/conference to exchange ideas. 9. Any other activity, as may be required. It is pertinent to inform that some have already committed 1 lakh rupees as individual contribution. If it is realised, there will be no problem in installing bronze statue. But this will not debar others from contributing for the statue or the conference hall/cultural centre.


Every individual or association are expected to participate in the event by celebrating in their own way. Majority view has emerged that the event should be started from Baripada, Mayurbhanj on February 04, 2017 and will be culminated in Baripada on February 04, 2018. Therefore, Associations in Baripada will have to take active and actual part in organizing the event. There should not be any laidback approach for this event as this will form a platform for the future. To begin with, on the day of February 04, 2017 (Saturday), everybody should assemble by 10 am near Murgabadi Chhak. A procession should be taken out from Murgabadi Chhak to Bhanjpur Golei to mark the occasion. Students in particular are being urged to join in large numbers to make it memorable a and the event a grand success. It may not be possible to contact each and everyone but that should not be the alibi for not taking part in the event. The procession will be followed by offering floral tribute in the statue of Gomke Sunaram Soren. It will not be out of place to invite some dance groups to keep the atmosphere alive and traditional. It is proposed to hold consultation meeting at Hadi Hadi – the place where statue of Guru Gomke Pandit Raghunath Murmu has been installed. This is a natural selection as basic amenities have been developed in the place. Moreover, after offering tribute to Gomke Sunaram Soren, it becomes a necessity to pay homage to Guru Gomke also. Last but not the least, let us collectively make this event a memory in a lifetime.

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