The traditional buffalo fight, popularly known as ‘Moh-Juj’, was organised after a gap of nine years at Ahatguri as part of the ‘Magh Bihu’ celebration in Assam’s Morigaon district on January 16.
Assam chief minister Himanta Biswa Sarma, along with the local MLA and Assam Water Resources Minister Pijush Hazarika, witnessed the event in Morigaon.
Speaking to the media at the event, the Assam chief minister said, “These fights are part of our age-old traditions. The important point is that we ensure that there is no harm done to the buffaloes or the birds. The organisers of the event ensure that the buffaloes and birds do not sustain any physical harm during the buffalo or Bulbul bird fights.”
Taking to his social media handle, CM Sarma posted on X, “In another effort to revive and preserve Assam’s timeless Bihu traditions, I had the privilege of witnessing the Moh-Juj after a nine-year hiatus in Ahotguri. This traditional buffalo fight is now conducted for the first time under stringent government guidelines, ensuring a delicate harmony between animal welfare and the celebration of our ancient culture.”
The Assam government earlier in December 2023 issued a Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) to hold buffalo fights and Bulbul bird fights.
Besides buffalo fights, Bulbul bird fights are also part of traditional Magh Bihu festivities and had been suspended during this period.
Both events resumed this year in adherence to Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) laid down by the state government, with the Bulbul bird fights held on January 15 coinciding with Makar Sankranti as per tradition.
“Bulbuli (bulbul bird) and ‘moh juj’ are happening in the state after eight to nine years. And it is with pride that I am witnessing these again,” Himanta Biswa Sarma said at Ahotguri.
The CM witnessed the Bulbul fight on January 15 and wrote on X: “Glimpses of the Bulbuli Fight, which took place at Shri Hayagriva Madhav Mandir after a gap of 9 years. This competition dates back to the days of Swargadeo Pramatta Singha.”
“In December 2023, the Assam Cabinet approved a detailed SOP for conducting this ancient Bihu tradition,” he added.