Itanagar: The media industry in Arunachal Pradesh on Wednesday received a shot in its arm with the launching of the first Hindi daily of the State by Chief Minister Pema Khandu here.
Titled Arun Bhoomi, the daily will be published and edited by Takam Sonia, who also heads the Arunachal Hindi Sanstha, an organization working for promotion and propagation of Hindi language in the state.
Congratulating the Arun Bhoomi team, Khandu termed the day as historic and a new chapter in the evolving history of media in the State. He said the void of a local daily in Hindi language has been filled with the launch.
Citing Hindi as the lingua-franca of the state, Khandu, however, admitted that while people in the state used Hindi for daily communication, most were ‘out of practice’ in reading and writing in the language.
“I have to admit. I am out of practice. The same time I would take to read five pages in English, I would take to read only one page in Hindi. With coming of this daily, I am sure, mine as well as others, hold on Hindi would improve with time,” he said.
Khandu called Hindi as the bond that unites the diverse ethnic tribes of the state who speak different dialects. He, therefore, lauded the initiative to start a newspaper in Hindi, saying it would strengthen the bond between the people.
The Chief Minister further hoped that the major population of the country, who speak and read Hindi, would get easy access to news, information and knowledge about Arunachal Pradesh.
Hailing Hindi, as the only language that has kept the state’s people as one besides connecting with people from outside the state and personnel of the Indian Armed Forces, the chief minister underscored the importance of taking it to a next level.
“Hindi was born in India. It’s our property therefore it’s our responsibility to promote and protect it. As Arunachalees we are proud that we have protected it in our own way,” Khandu said pointing to the typical Hindi spoken in Arunachal Pradesh, which defies rules of grammar.
The Chief Minister admitted that when existing newspapers of the state find it difficult to sustain for lack of private and corporate advertisements, it would be an uphill task for a newly launched daily.
He however assured that on request of the state’s press fraternity, the state government would soon review its advertisement policy that would also benefit the newly launched daily.
Pema Khandu suggested to the Arun Bhoomi team not to take the newspaper purely as a business venture but to take it as a mission to promote Hindi amongst the new generation of Arunachalees besides encouraging literature and preservation of indigenous culture.
Meanwhile, publisher cum chief editor of the daily Takam Sonia informed that Arun Bhoomi would be flexible as far as grammar is concerned and patronize writings in Arunachalee Hindi.
“There is no such thing as pure Hindi. We will welcome writings in Arunachalee Hindi as people connect with it,” he said.
The launching ceremony was also attended by Deputy Speaker of state Legislative Assembly Tesam Pongte, Chief Advisor of Arunachal Hindi Sanstha Tai Tagak, Faculty of Dera Natung Government College Prof A K Pandey and others.