Gopinath Bardoloi was Assam’s most well-known leader
in the country during the thirties and forties of this century.
He is rightly regarded as one of the makers of modern India.
During the crucial days of transfer of power, it was he who
mobilised public opinion against grouping Assam and:Bengal
under the Cabinet Mission Scheme and thus foiled the subtle
attempt of the Muslim League to include Assam in East Pakistan.
Happily, in this, Bardoloi received unstinted support
of his ideological mentor, Gandhiji.
He was a self-made leader with many qualities of head and
heart. His deep interests in sports, constructive work, theatre,
history, tribal life and Indian spiritual tradition made him
catholic in his outlook and taste. His untimely death was
mourned universally. Dr Harekrishna Mehtab, the maker
of modern Orissa, told me in 1980, ‘"‘Assam was fortunate to
have Bardoloi as her leader. Had he lived longer, Assam
would have been spared of the present agonies.’"’ Dr Mehtab
said this while the Assam movement on foreigners was at its
This short biography is an attempt at reconstructing his
life in its most significant aspects. It cannot be called a
complete biography. What I have tried here is to give a neat
picture of this remarkable man as judiciously as I am
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