Vice President and Chairman of Rajya Sabha M Venkaiah Naidu described the first learned and spoke mother tongue as ‘soul of life’, and thereby appealed to the Members of Parliament to contribute to the cause of preservation and promotion of several Indian languages.
Naidu passed a letter to all the MPs written in widely spoken Indian languages along with English on February 16, to mark the occasion of “International Mother Languages Day’ on February 21.
Naidu elaborates in details within the three page letter about the importance of strong foundation skills to be in the first language which is the mother tongue, which subsequently builds a base for better academic performance and for learning the second language.
In the letter, Naidu wrote, “With a multiplicity of languages and a rich spectrum of dialects, we have regions which are repositories of knowledge much of which stands imperiled today. This is mainly due to a mindset of looking down upon one’s mother tongue and wearing the linguistic badge of competence in English as a false sign of superiority… Culture and language are the two sides of the same coin. They embody rich knowledge and practices accumulated over a long period of time. Extinction of a language results in the loss of precious legacy. We can’t allow this to happen.”
Naidu emphasized on promoting the native languages as a move to preserve the rich cultural diversity of India.
Naidu further wrote, “We take pride in India being a mosaic of several languages and cultures epitomizing unity in diversity. This applies to the world as well, which is emerging as a global village. The richness of our diverse cultures can only be preserved through the promotion of mother languages.”
Naidu emphasized on the fact that learning more languages opens up the door to the world besides pushing forth towards cross-cultural understanding, peace and harmony. He said, “But, it can’t be achieved without a strong foundation in one’s first language. Mother tongue is the soul of life.”
Naidu led the motto of “Let us love and promote mother tongue” and also informed the MPs about the current status where 200 Indian languages have become extinct and UNO expressed worry about one world language getting extinct recurrently within two weeks.