The Assam Kaziranga University

A “Miya museum” in Assam’s Goalpara district was allegedly in violation of land and property rules, therefore the officials there sealed it on Tuesday.

The ‘museum,’ according to the authorities, was erected inside a house built with funds from the Pradhan Mantri Awaas Yojana-Gramin (PMAY-G) programme.

In the village of Dapkarbhita, the museum was inaugurated on October 23.

Assam’s chief minister, Himanta Biswa Sarma, said the following about the ‘museum’: “I don’t understand what kind of museum is this. The plough which they have placed in the museum is used by Assamese people, even the items used for catching fish are also from the Assamese community. What’s new about it? Everything kept there belong to Assamese people except for ‘lungi’. They must prove that the nangol (plough) is used only by Miya people and not others. Otherwise, a case will be registered.”

“The museum in question only has traditional items which reflect the culture of Assamese society as a whole and not that of Miya community,” he added.

“The intellectuals of the state must think about it. They called me communal when I raised my voice against Miya’s poetry. Now Miya poetry, Miya school, and Miya Museum are here…The govt will take action on the matter after the office opens,” added the chief minister.

Sarma has said that an investigation into the supposed museum’s funding will be conducted.

The term “Miya,” also known as “No-Asamiya” (neo-Assamese), is frequently used to refer to migrant Muslims from Bangladesh. During the British era, their ancestors immigrated to Assam’s Brahmaputra Valley from places like Mymensingh, Rangpur, and Rajshahi Divisions in modern-day Bangladesh.

It’s noteworthy that a Miya Museum was suggested to be built at Guwahati’s Srimanta Sankaradeva Kalakshetra by Congress MLA Sherman Ali Ahmed in 2020. Chief Minister Sarma had at the time turned down the proposal.

The Assam Kaziranga University