Shillong, February 6: Sahitya Akademi member from Meghalaya Sylvanus Lamare today called for a mass movement by citizens of the State to press for inclusion of Khasi language in the Eight Schedule of the Indian Constitution.
Lamare said that at present there is not enough pressure from the people of the State for building up momentum for the cause.
“The Khasi language does not have any drawback and there is no reason why it can’t be included in the Eight Schedule,” Lamare said.
Lamare also urged civil society groups to come forward and lead the movement for inclusion of Khasi language in the Eight Schedule.
“All social organisations, Church groups, and even pressure groups will have to come together to lead this movement,” he added.
The Sahitya Akademi member from the State said that Khasi language has reached a status higher than any other language of the region.
Lamare, however, questioned the people’s love for the language. “If the people actually love their language, why it is then still not included in the Eight Schedule,” he wondered.
He also informed that a meeting of the government–constituted committee to pursue the inclusion of the Khasi language in the Eighth Schedule of the Constitution was held on December 19.
“The committee has already met once. We hope to come up with a draft so that the state Assembly can pass a resolution to put pressure on the Centre to include Khasi in the Eight Schedule of the Indian Constitution,” Lamare said.
The Arts and Culture Director MW Nongbri is the member secretary of the committee, which was notified on November 28. Other members of the committee are Urban Affairs Minister Ampareen Lyngdoh, Paul Lyngdoh, MLA (UDP), PN Syiem, MLA (Cong), Witting Mawsor, MLA (HSPDP), PW Ingty, Principal Secretary in–charge Art and Culture, Dr. Sylvanus Lamare from the Sahitya Akademi, S. Dkhar, head of the Khasi Department of NEHU, MBOSE Executive Chairman EP Kharbhih, former member of Sahitya Akademi S. Quotient Sumer, Law Secretary L.M. Sangma, and BR Kharlukhi, ex–MP.
According to Lamare, once the language is included in the Eight Schedule it will help in generating employment even as Khasi will be included in the syllabus of different universities of the country.
Meanwhile, this year’s three–day Yuva Puraskar and All India Young Writers’ Festival of the Sahitya Akademi would be held in the State Capital from February 10 at U Soso Tham Auditorium.
Lamare informed that as many as 75 writers from all over the country would be converging for the award ceremony.
Lamare said that during the three–day Writers’ Festival young writers of the State can interact with their contemporaries from other parts of the country.