The idea of preserving linguistic diversity through new education policy is not new to India, rather there is an existing centuries old tradition behind it. Elucidate.

The Languages in India since time immemorial has been centre of every culture and tradition. In ancient India, during many symposiums (Shashtarthas), use of Sanskrit language to win an argument was a popular practice.

Many ancient text of India like Abhigyan shakuntalam, Ratnavali, Ashtadhyayi represents rich knowledge of Sanskrit language. Various other languages like Pali (popularized by Tripitakas), Prakrit (used by Ashoka in Dhamma) were preserved through writing.

Continuity of linguistic tradition:

  • Upnishads were created to give proper meaning to the Shruti’s of the ancient Gurus. They were compiled in same language in which original lecture was delivered.
  • Sangam tradition through various writing preserved the essence of Dravidian language.
  • Preservation was ensured by converting and translating one work in many languages. E.g. Mahabharat in Persian.
  • Transmission was ensured through permanent writing by various kings through edicts, pillars and Prashasti.

Arriving of new Languages and their preservation:

  • Arabic was popularized by Sultanate rulers as seen in kitab-ul-hind.
  • Turkish was preserved through Baburnama.
  • New language like Urdu was borne by use of Hindi and Persian.
  • Various literary styles, prose writings, Ghazals did the work of transmitting and preserving Urdu.

Modern era and preservation:

  • Writings of Raja Ram Mohan Roy in various languages highlighted the idea of linguistic heterogeneity.
  • Sanskrit and Bengali were preserved again by Bankim Chandra Chatterjee.
  • Swami Vivekananda, Dayanand revived Sanskrit culture that was once lost to Persian and Arabic writings.

Through New Education Policy 2020 we reiterated our century old tradition of preserving language and maintaining unity in diversity of language through three language formula.


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