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Inauguration of the Academic Year of the New Don Bosco College at Bongaigaon

By Father Alex Kattakayam
Guwahati, Aug. 19. The Inauguration of the Academic year of Don Bosco Junior College, Bongaigaon was a historic moment for the Province of Guwahati as well as for the people of BTAD and Lower Assam. The inauguration of the Academic Year was also, in some way, inauguration of the college itself, a long-cherished dream come true for the Province of Guwahati. The inaugural programme was held on 17th August, by Shri Kampa Borgoyary, Deputy Chief of Bodoland Territorial Area District (BTAD).
The programme began with the lighting of the lamp, signifying symbolically the prime duty of the College, of dispelling darkness and ushering in the light of knowledge. The lamp was lit by the Chief Guest, Thomas Pulloppillil, the Bishop of Bongaigaon, Father V.M Thomas, Provincial, Father Joseph Thelekkatt, the Director, Father Alex Kattakayam, Principal, a staff, a student and a Managing Committee Member. In his welcome speech, Father Joseph Thelekkatt listed the efforts of the province in realizing this dream of a College at Bongaigaon. He also recalled with gratitude the personal efforts made by the Chief Guest, and Fr. Provincial in expediting the process of establishing a college at Bongaigaon.
One of the students who spoke on behalf of the youth of the region said, ''Today is a historic day for us all as we witness the inauguration of the academic year of the first batch at Don Bosco Junior College, Bongaigaon. We are indeed privileged to belong to the maiden group, and are proud to be the modest beginning of a momentous journey that this institution will make. A Don Bosco College here has been a long-felt need and I, on behalf of the youth of BTAD and this region of Assam, want to thank the authorities who have taken great pains to make this dire need a magnificent reality, giving us quality education at affordable rates most especially for accompanying me and the youth of our region and giving us hope as well as sure direction.''

Thomas Pulloppillil, the Bishop thanked the Salesians in accepting his invitation in establishing a Junior college at Bongaigaon and expressed the hope that the Catholics and others of lower Assam will benefit from the services which will be offered here.  Father Provincial who spoke briefly about the efforts of the province in establishing the College, spoke to the students that their ''TASK'' is discover their TALENT, develop a proper ATTITUDE, enhance their SKILLS and of course gain new KNOWLEDGE. Speaking of knowledge, he further challenged the staff and students to be 'creators' of knowledge and not mere passive 'consumers' of knowledge.

Shri Kampa Borgoyary who spoke quite extensively, thanked the Don Bosco organization for establishing a college in Bongaigaon. He spoke about the low literacy rate of Chirang District and BTAD in general and highlighted the efforts of BTC in addressing the needs of higher education in the region. He promised to extend financial support to the college and informed the audience that they have amended the rules of BTC to help private institutions that genuinely worked for the welfare of the people. The speeches were followed by a brief cultural show and lunch for all.



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