"Languages - Make Us Strangers In Our Own Country?"
Languages - Make us Strangers in our Own Country!
by Maj P. Tuhinikar Choudary (Retd) (Mob: +91 98480 47477)
Chairman - Institute for Democratic & Economic Affairz (IDEAz)
Language is for communication both Nationally and Globally and enough importance must be given to the Mother tongue / Local language and also to develop our ancient language Sanskrit. Especially today as the world is recognizing the importance of Sanskrit and is seeking to learn it.
The three languages formula has not worked out well because;
- People insist on favouring their Mother Tongue and script
- They do not want to learn an additional script as they see it as a disadvantage and as discriminatory, when compared to people for whom that script is of their Mother tongue.
- Also there is a great demand to continue with English, the language of our Constitution, as it gives us an advantage even Globally.
We need to have a more practical and widely acceptable Language Policy.
- Language is for communication, both Globally and Nationally.
- In a Country like India, with so many languages, parochial insistence on one language over the other defeats the purpose of Nation-wide communication.
- Rational, open minded approach will show the way.
Quotations for consideration:
- “Language is for easy and proper communication and not for proving one’s erudition or for snobbery.” - Anon
- “A common language is the most obvious binding element in any society.” - Michael Howard.
To encourage a common language that allows for better National Integration and another for ease of Global Communication, both with a common script and to also encourage the local language with its phonetic script that can also be used for Sanskrit as our National language.
- English, the language of our Constitution, deserves to be recognized as our Nation’s Official language, with its script (Roman) also used for our Working language (Hindustani).
- The Local language / Mother tongue must be encouraged and its phonetic script also be used for Sanskrit, which for historic and knowledge reasons needs to be recognized and established as our National language.
- If our ancestors had insisted only on their ‘Mother Tongue’, then we should all have been speaking ONLY in PRAKRIT or PALI or such other ancient vernacular language. If they had sought the advantage of better communicability over purity of traditional language or mother tongue, then perhaps we too today, should strive for better communicability for each of us all across our country and globally, even as we seek to encourage knowledge and use of each of our ‘Mother Tongues’.
- Learning a language is not a difficult process provided it is taken up systematically and in a manner appropriate to the age of the learner. Learning by speaking and play in childhood is the best way.
- Some decades ago, when AT & T was the only telecom giant in the USA, it carried out a study to determine how large a vocabulary was required to be able to communicate well in English. A study