Experts call for renaissance of Telugu language

Speakers at World Telugu Writers meet decry neglect of the language

Published - December 28, 2019 11:36 pm IST - VIJAYAWADA

It is a misconception that a student’s confidence takes a beating if he is educated only in his mother tongue, asserted senior Communist Party of India (CPI) leader K. Narayana here on Saturday.

Addressing the World Telugu Writers’ Conference attended by representatives of political parties and administrators, Mr. Narayana argued that there was no connection between an individual’s mother tongue and his employment prospects.

“Andhra Pradesh should perhaps emulate its neighbouring State of Tamil Nadu, where every five years, a special committee is formed to diligently work on modernising ancient Tamil words and bring them into the realm of the spoken language of the common man. We need to do something similar to make things simple and propagate them,” Mr. Narayana said, adding that the CPI has always been wedded to the cause of Telugu as the medium of instruction for schoolchildren in the State.

Former Deputy Speaker and president of the conference Mandali Buddha Prasad called upon Telugu writers to take up the role of ‘Bhasha Satyagrahis’ and usher in a renaissance of the language.

“Development of Telugu will not be possible without the role of the writers who should strengthen the hands of policy-makers to give the language its due place. Among politicians, there are many leaders who feel passionately for Telugu language,” Mr. Buddha Prasad said, citing the example of Telugu Desam Party founder and former Chief Minister N.T. Rama Rao who left no stone unturned in propagating the Telugu language at every possible platform.

BJP MLC P.V.N. Madhav said the decline in the language was due to the failure of successive governments in kindling a love for the mother tongue among younger generations.

“Governments have not been doing what it takes to develop and enrich Telugu language. It is a fact that students from Telugu medium are denied jobs as they are seen as under-equipped. Many advertisements for some government posts have specified English medium education as a criteria. Making language an election issue is the only way to shift focus of political parties to this crucial aspect,” Mr. Madhav said.

TDP MLC Ashok Babu found fault with the “over-enthusiasm” of the Y.S. Jagan Mohan Reddy government to replace Telugu with English as a medium of instruction in schools. Asserting that acquiring knowledge was key, he said the government’s attempt to blame it on ‘societal demands’ was far from reality.

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