The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) has declared 2019 as the International Year of Indigenous Languages to draw attention to languages around the world that are in danger of disappearing.
A recent study showed that 197 Indian languages are on the verge of extinction or are listed endangered, which includes 89 languages from the Northeast.
In India, Belwart International has been given the responsibility to look after the activities during the observation of the International Year of Indigenous Languages so that attention can be drawn from various quarters in order to protect the dying or these endangered languages.
Gitartha Darshan Baruah of Belwart International, addressing the media on Monday in New Delhi, said, “In total 197 Indian languages are on the verge of extinction and of these, 89 languages are from the northeast. With 34 languages, Arunachal Pradesh has the highest number of languages under threat.”
He further said that in order to preserve a language and the culture of a state, the Centre, the respective state governments, Union Ministry of Culture and Union Ministry of Social Welfare have equal responsibilities.
“But what has been observed is just the opposite. The governments and the organizations have not done enough for the preservation of the dying languages,” Baruah further said.
He further informed that on June 29 a consultation would be held in New Delhi where suggestions would be sought from various linguists and officials from the government.
It may be mentioned here that by observing 2019 as the International Year of Indigenous Languages in every country, UNESCO will try and find out ways to preserve these dying or endangered languages.