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Scholars meet in "Conference on promotion of Kurukh Language"

 Ranchi, Dec 16, 2012

The international conference on Kurukh language, literature and culture laid stress on generation building through teaching in Kurukh, besides promoting literature and culture. The first international conference on Kurukh which kicked off at Aryabhatt Hall of RU on Saturday also urged upon the Centre and the state to initiate measures for the inclusion of the regional language in the eighth schedule of the Constitution. At present the language is being taught at the UG and PG levels in RU and Nilamber Pitamber University.

To curb decline of the Kurukh language and work for its preservation, 22 delegates from Nepal, six from Bangladesh, two from Bhutan and one each from the US and Sweden participated at the first International Conference on Kurukh Language, Literature & Culture held in the country.  Governor Syed Ahmed inaugurated this two-day meet in the State capital on Saturday. Ahmed, who himself speaks six Indian languages, said, “In Jharkhand, a Taj Mahal of culture and language must be made in order to benefit the rural masses.”   “Kurukh as a compulsory subject has begun only in Jharkhand and Chhattisgarh at the primary education level,” said Dr Khaka, member of the Kurukh Society of India. Dr Usha Rani Minz, chief editor of Kurukh Literary Society of India, said, “Kurukh must be included among the linguistic subjects in the Union Public Service Commission examinations.” In 2010, when two tribal languages — Santhali and Bodo — were included in the UPSC exam languages list, Kurukh Society members had requested including Kurukh, Mundari, Khariya and Ho languages as well since a large number of tribes of eastern India are accustomed to these languages.   Jharkhand and Chhattisgarh have already sent a recommendation to the Ministry of Home Affairs to include Kurukh in the Eight Schedule of Constitution of India. Scholars from Ranchi University, Vinoba Bhave University and various States were seen purchasing books, CDs (prepared by Akhra) and T-shirts depicting the tribal culture of Jharkhand. The Jharkhand Jharoka book stall caught everyone’s eye. Stall owner Balu Kherwar said, “Biku Tirkey’s book ‘Kurukh Sikhey’ (Rs 150), Dr BC Sharan’s book on ‘Jharkhand Bhumi aur Bhumiputr’ (Rs 150), Dr Agnipith Tirkey’s Dictionary on Kurukh to Hindi (Rs 400), Biku Tirkey’s book ‘Oraon Sarna’ and Dr Francisco Kujur’s ‘Jharkhand Ondh Nazair’ were the most popular, with hardly a few left. We have many tribal culture books in English but Hindi is the only preference here.” VBU Vice-Chancellor Dr Ravindra Nath Bhagat requested the Governor to begin language courses in all universities. At present, Ranchi University is the only one to carry courses on nine tribal languages, including Kurukh. “In Odisha, 40 Oraon kings knowing Kurukh are working on preserving our traditional custom, wherein the State is helping to teach Kurukh from classes I to V at 42 primary schools,” said Kurukh Literary Society of India member Lily Kujur. Highlighting Nepal’s initiative for Multi language, Beachen Oraon from Nepal stated, “Since 2007, the Government — in its tabloid ‘Gorkha Patr’ — is contributing a feature page exclusively for the 2 lakh Kurukh-speaking population there.”  

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