The University Grants Commission has proposed several activities that higher education institutions could adopt on Bharatiya Bhasha Utsav to be observed on December 11. The commission has now urged universities to hold exhibitions to introduce “interesting words” in regional languages, and greetings in different ways like Namaste, Pranam, Vanakkam, Khurumjari, Nomoshkar, Kem Chho, and more.
The activities are intended to foster “language harmony” and to encourage an environment conducive to learning Indian languages. The Bharatiya Bhasa Utsav marks the birth anniversary of Mahakavi Subramania Bharati, a multi-linguist and freedom fighter.
The UGC guideline to observe the Utsav is based on the recommendations of a committee formed by the Union Education Ministry last year to promote languages spoken in India.
“The exhibition should highlight that all Indian languages with a large body of common vocabularies, common sentence patterns, common roots, common vowels and consonants, and common underlying grammar have a common ancestry and are one of the great unifying factors of our country,” the UGC statement read.
Universities have also been asked to set up “language stalls” in which at least one Indian language from a state is represented. According to UGC, each stall must offer interesting information about the languages of the respective state. It went on to say that interesting activities at the stall should be planned to help participants understand that learning another Indian language is not the same as learning a new language.
In addition, the commission recommended a “my language, my signature” campaign to encourage children to sign in their native languages whenever possible. It has urged universities to motivate students, faculty, and parents to wear ethnic clothing that reflects India’s rich cultural heritage and history. Suggestions for language-related games have also been given by the commission. The UGC has even directed higher educational institutes to appoint nodal officers to coordinate events at their colleges and to submit event details by December 12.
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