Learning of other languages should not be at cost of mother tongue

March 12, 2010

All civilizations which lose their mother tongue lose their identity

Srinagar, Mar 10: All civilizations which lose their mother tongue lose their identity. This was stated by Minister for Education, Peerzada Muhammad Syed here on Wednesday while referring to the need for preservation of Kashmiri language.

He was speaking at a function organized by premier literary organization of the state, Adabi Markaz Kamraz (AMK) following the state government’s decision to introduce Kashmiri in the school curriculum of class 9 and 10

He asserted that though learning of other languages is also necessary but it should not be at the cost of the mother tongue.

“Our cultural and emotional ethos is amalgamated in our mother language and the true expression and communication is represented only through mother tongue,” the minister said.

“The most precious gift a mother gives to her children is language. Kashmiri language has imbibed the influence of other languages due to the influence of cultural plurality but its original context and essence maintains its originality,” he said.

About the landmark decision to introduce the language in school curriculum, Syed said, “I consider it a team work of all the students, parents and teachers to have made this venture successful. We have great history of our language and this is to be realized.”

Reputed academician, Aga Ashraf Ali, who presided over the function, said that learning and practicing Kashmiri was a victim of inferiority complex.

“But now the times have changed and it is a welcome step from the authorities to introduce Kashmiri language in the school syllabi,” he said.

Asserting that as long as Kashmiri poetry is alive, Kashmiri language cannot die, Ali said, “We need to translate the best literature of the world to add to the already existing treasure of the language.”

Eminent Kashmiri poet and Jnanpith awardee, Rahman Rahi presented the text of the resolution stating that Kashmiri should be prescribed as a compulsory subject in ninth and tenth classes and efforts for this should be made as soon as possible.

Director Education, Shagufta Parveen said that a Kashmiri person lacks to be Kashmiri unless he can speak and read the language.

“Proper life cannot be understood without expression in mother tongue. There was a period when parents kept their children away from Kashmiri language, but there is a change in this attitude now,” she said.

Director Education also added that the subject will not be evaluated because of the pressure already faced by students and a committee will be set up in near future to discuss about it.

The syllabus for ninth class has already been published and for 10th class it will be published in about five months.

General Secretary, Adabi Markaz Kamraz, Syed Shujaat Bukhari said the decisions for preservation of Kashmiri language should be implemented in letter and spirit to make it a success.

“Lakhs of readers are going to read rich Kashmiri literature,” President AMK, Aziz Hajini said on the occasion. On the occasion, mementos were presented to the Education Minister by the students.

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