IMPHAL, Aug 20: The Centre for Tribal and Endangered Languages, a division of Central Institute of Indian languages (CIIL), Mysore, under the Ministry of Human Resource Development, Government of India, will soon produce a white paper on the tribal Languages of each state of India.
This was stated by Prof. G. Devi Prasada Shastri, head, Centre for Tribal and Endangered Languages of CIIL, Mysore, who is on a five-day visit to the state to supervise the ongoing documentation process of various major tribal languages of the state which have been declared as extinct in the online version of UNESCO World Atlas of Endangered Languages vis-à-vis Census 2009.
A reception function of Prof. Shastri was held today at Aimol Khullen Community Hall, Aimol Khullen, Chandel district.
The village chiefs, elders and youths of Aimol villages warmly welcomed the visiting professor in a typical Aimol tradition.
Speaking at the reception function, Prof. G.D. Prasada Shastri stated that the CIIL is very much concerned about the wrong report of UNESCO that has categorized various widely spoken tribal languages of Manipur as extinct. The centre would render utmost help and support for the preservation and promotion of various tribal languages of the state, he said.
He further maintained that the report of UNESCO comes as a thunderbolt to all, especially in India which has no policy on endangered languages. None of the Indian languages has ever been classified as endangered. The government has been striving to preserve and promote all languages of the country equally, he noted.
Shastri also stated that the tribes should take keen interest in preserving and promoting their own languages. The CIIL is ever ready to assist the tribes in their campaign for the preservation and promotion of languages, he added.
A team from the Centre for Tribal and Endangered Languages of CIIL led by chief resource person Dr. Th. Chandramani has been actively involved in the documentation of various major tribal languages of the state like Aimol, Tarao, Andro, Phayeng and others which have been included in the category of extinct languages of the world.
So far the team has documented the languages of Aimol, Tarao, Monsang and Chothe in various villages of Chandel district.