Regional languages

Greater Kashmir

I am sure that Ghulam Nabi Azad had not consulted the prominent educationists before announcing the introduction of Kashmiri, Dogri, Pahari etc. from class first in the schools of the state. On the one hand we talk of lessening the weight of a child’s school bag but on the other hand we go on adding subjects, which are not necessary for competing in this competitive world. Our child in government schools would now need to learn three languages at once in government schools. Unlike other states in which more than 90% people speak a single language, in J&K state a number of languages are spoken. It is for this reason that Urdu has been made the official language of the state. Since the script of Kashmiri, Gojri, Pahari etc and Urdu have same script, it would be difficult for a child to learn the writing of both the languages. The child has also to start the learning of English. While making any policy on languages, we should see that a child learns to read and write Urdu, which is the official language of the state and link language of the Muslims of the subcontinent. We should learn from Bangladesh where anti-Pakistan elements raised the issue of Bengali language in early fifties and wiped out Urdu in then East Pakistan by late sixties. This move led to communication gap between the Muslims of East Bengal and the Muslims of other parts of the subcontinent.
In early years, the child should be taught the basics of Science and reasoning. The books should be content wise so designed that they lay foundation of our next generation and are interesting for the children. It is the time that the introduction of regional languages from class first is reconsidered. The introduction may be made from class third or fourth.
Muhammad Farooq
Gandhi Nagar,
Jammu, J&K