Taking note of UNESCO findings that there are around 196 endangered languages in India, heritage conservation body INTACH is organising a seminar to press for the “need to value and preserve” the rich heritage of the country’s composite culture.

According to the UNESCO Atlas of the world’s languages in danger 2009, the country has around 196 endangered languages, including about 120 in Northeast, among the highest in the world.

“The finding by the UNESCO is a matter of concern. So the emphasis needs to be given on ways to preserve the country’s heritage. Through this seminar we will raise the matter and recommend to the governments — the Centre and the state,” INTACH chairman S. K. Misra told reporters.

A number of experts and specialists from various parts of the world will participate in the two-day seminar from Thursday.

According to the findings, there are around 44 endangered languages in the Himalayan states of Himachal Pradesh, Jammu and Kashmir and Uttarakhand.

About 42 endangered languages are there in the states of Orissa, Jharkhand, Bihar and West Bengal, the UNESCO says.

The other objectives of the seminar are ascertaining the place of minority and regional languages in education and society besides recommending viable solutions on a future course with emphasis on education, among others.

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