Save dying tribal languages

Chief Minister Pema Khandu on Saturday while addressing a programme organized by the Galo Welfare Society emphasized the importance of languages for the survival of tribal cultures in the state. His announcement of earmarking of fund for development of tribal languages and steps being taken for their introduction in schools are commendable efforts. The onslaught of Hindi and English are big threat to the very existence of tribal languages. The UNESCO has listed all the 26 languages of Arunachal Pradesh as endangered. Situation is so bad that few of them are expected to get extinct within next decade.
Today majority of children in the state cannot speak in their own mother tongue. The tribal languages have been dying slow death and no efforts were made to save them by the past governments. Nevertheless it is good to see that finally politicians are also realizing the gravity of the situation. For any community or tribe, language is matter of identity and it helps to unite them. To save the state’s dying indigenous languages government should take the help of experts. The proper developments of languages will aid the effort to introduce them in schools. As a drastic measure state government should make it compulsory to study local languages upto class 5 and introduce Hindi subject only from class 6 onwards. The parents also should make effort to speak in local dialects with the children at home. Also the community based organizations can play an important role in their promotion.