Birangana Sati Sadhani Divas: Date, Story & History of the Day

Birangana Sati Sadhani Diva
Birangana Sati Sadhani Diva

Assam celebrates Sati Sadhani Day, also referred to as Sati Sadhani Divas, on April 21 every year. The commemoration pays homage to the last monarch of the Chutia Kingdom, a medieval state located in present-day Assam.

Story of Birangana Sati Sadhani

Sati Sadhani was born in Sadiya and was the daughter of King Dharmadhwajpal, also known as Dhirnarayan. King Dhirnarayan organized a svayamvara ceremony for Sadhani to choose a husband from a group of suitors when she turned 19 years old. The king pledged to wed Sadhani to anyone who could shoot a running squirrel with an arrow. A cow-herder named Nitai emerged victorious and became Sadhani’s husband, changing his name to Nitipal after their marriage. 

In 1522, Nitipal and Sadhani ascended to the throne as king and queen of Chutia. However, Nitipal's lack of experience in governance led to a tumultuous reign. He replaced the old ministers with his friends from his hometown, leading to a rebellion and the splitting of Chutia into several independent parts. Despite Nitipal's ineffective rule, Sadhani took charge of the kingdom. However, the damage had been done, and the neighboring Ahom Kingdom took advantage of Chutia's weakened state. 

The two kingdoms' dispute, which had started during Dhirnarayan's rule, came to a head in 1523 when the Ahom king annexed Chutia. Despite their best efforts, Sadhani and Nitipal were unable to reach a settlement. On April 16, 1524, the Ahom army attacked Sadiya, the Chutia capital. Sadhani and Nitipal fled to the mountains with some surviving soldiers and launched a guerrilla war against the invaders. Sadhani even assembled a force of 120 female warriors.

Sadly, some of the former Chutia ministers and military commanders sided with the Ahom Kingdom, resulting in Chutia's defeat. King Nitipal was shot with an arrow, and Queen Sadhani fought until the end. She chose to take her own life by jumping from a hill, rather than be captured and face dishonor. According to another account, Nitipal was killed during the capture of Sadiya, and Sadhani was offered to marry the new governor of the city, appointed by the ruler of Ahom. She chose death over dishonor and leaped from a hill.

History of Sati Sadhani Divas

Sati Sadhani's story has inspired generations of Assamese and beyond, and her bravery and devotion are honored on Birangana Sati Sadhani Divas. Furthermore, the Sutiya Jati Unnayan Parishad established the Sati Sadhani Award to recognize individuals who have made outstanding contributions to the fields of art, culture, and literature. The award is selected by a committee formed by the Parishad.

Sati Sadhani's life has been depicted in various forms of art, including the drama Sadhani by 20th-century Assamese writer Padmanath Gohain Baruah. Her story has become a symbol of strength and courage for women, inspiring them to stand up for their rights and honor.

Birangana Sati Sadhani Divas is not just a day to celebrate the life of a legendary queen but also a reminder of the importance of courage, devotion, and sacrifice in our lives. Sati Sadhani's story is a testament to the power of these values and the enduring legacy they can leave behind.

Birangana Sati Sadhani Diva
Bogibeel Bridge named ‘Birangana Sati Sadhani Setu’

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