Mother tongue is as important as our mother: Tarlochan Singh

September 02, 2015 01:15 PM

Punjab News Express
CHANDIGARH: Former MP and Former Chairman of National Minority Commission of India and PU Fellow Tarlochan Singh today said that Mother Tongue is as important as our mother.

Tarlochan Singh was addressing an extension lecture on the topic of ‘Importance of Mother Tongues’ at the Department of Guru Nanak Sikh Studies, Panjab University (PU) here today. The lecture was organized by the University under the initiative of UNESCO and sponsorship of University Grants Commission India to promote awareness about the role of mother tongue in the development of individual as well as society. The lectures elicited views on the action-plan to be adopted for achieving the aim.

Tarlochan Singh said that the creation of Bangladesh out of Pakistan proved that Mother Tongue was rather more important than the religion. He delineated the role played by the mother tongues in different parts of the world in fixing political boundaries. He also gave example of Yugoslavia.

Referring to the pre-independence history, Tarlochan Singh Punjabi never enjoyed the United Punjab Government patronage but its spoken form thrived due to the love of the people. Even during the Sikh rule of Ranjit Singh, Punjabi was not the official language. He said that the Punjabi is not the language of Sikhs alone as it is equally popular among the non-sikh people. He also referred the example of Faruq Abdulla,
Bhupinder Singh Hooda, Om Parkash Chautala, Bansi Lal.

Eminent journalist Baljit Balli underlined the importance of incorporating daily use word in Punjabi language. He stressed for using functional Panjabi language. He expressed the opinion that mother tongue is not merely a medium of communication but it goes to shapes one’s identity as it builds up human culture imbibed by an individual during the formative years of his/her life. He also referred to the challenges being
faced by Punjabi especially at the hands of globalization and dominance of English.

Chief Guest of the function PU Vice-Chancellor Prof Arun Kumar Grover highlighted the concept of equality adopted by the UNESCO in the case of languages. He stressed upon the need of establishing common programmes such as Schools of Languages at the Universities and launching world level projects involving different countries and the UNESCO itself for promotion of regional languages.

Prof Jaspal Kaur Kaang said that this was the first programme organised under the initiative of UNESCO which has gained rich audience.

Many issues have been highlighted by the speakers regarding the main topic about which Dr. Kaang said that these could be resolved by creating a bridge between eastern languages and western languages. More programmes will be organised so that the challenges before the oriental languages could be solved.

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