Monday, August 4, 2008

Call a mother as mother and pay fine!?

Sounds strange right? My neighbor’s daughter used to attend music classes with me. Cute, pretty girl of about 12 years old. She had a wonderful pitch in her voice, but she was not very interested in singing. Its only at later stages that I came to know that she was attending music classes only by parental pressure. However, she discontinued it later. She is a brilliant girl from a CBSE school and a kannada girl from a perfect kannadiga family. Surprisingly, one day I came to know that she was unable to read and write kannada. Her kannada accent was also like English. The reason sounded truly bizarre! In her school, the students should pay fine if they speak in kannada. It is just like, paying fine to call a mother as a mother! I mean its really strange because, one cannot make a child learn the concept of language by preventing the learning of mother tongue.

It was really shocking to know that schools, charge a fine to small, innocent children for speaking their own tongue! Children will imprint an image that we portray for them, be it on any substance. If the educational institutions itself create such a blunder, the students will obviously get an aversion towards the banned languages. They will feel guilty to even speak that language in public. They will ultimately come to the conclusion that speaking regional language is a matter of shame. And English language itself becomes the status symbol. Finally for marketing purpose, few Medias bring out a mediocre language in the name of ‘regionalism’ and ‘affiliation for regional languages’.

We don’t recognize these mistakes and at later stages we curb for our language being decimalized. We realize the scarcity for regional language affiliation only when it is being politicized. We have become so narrow minded that, only when it comes to the matter of personal relations like marriage or something, we suddenly become regional and culture lovers. But otherwise, we need all ‘modern’, ‘western’! When I quote these terms here, please observe that I have used inverted commas, to highlight the fact that those terms are also misperceived and wrongly applied.

Of course I don’t deny the fact that English learning is of high importance in this globalised world. Without English, surviving a decent livelihood is almost next to impossible these days. And also we have to learn English for the other reason that it is one of the beautiful languages. But should the learning be happen at the cost of regional languages? Any language, is a bliss to the humankind. I personally feel that, study of a language is a broader concept which includes not only the grammatical aspects of a particular language but also the culture, the psychology and genres of human nature. And also, linguistically all languages will have its own beautifying factors.

It is altogether a different matter that we are not even learning English (or any language for that matter) as it needs to be learnt. This statement is being made here keeping the view of the method of learning a language academically. Language learning needs its own space. The forum of language learning methods can be kept aside for time being and I want the readers to know, hatred for any language is foolishness. It is also objectionable to hate other languages in the name of ignorant love for a particular language. If I am a kannadiga, it doesn’t mean that I should hate all other languages. As youth its our responsibility to understand the political games and make the difference out by our own cognitive knowledge. Let us come out of our ignorance and try to learn all languages with equal respect. To begin with, at least let us oppose this disgusting ‘fine’ system and allow the freedom for children to speak and learn their own languages. Because, language is neither politics, nor class!


sunaath said...

It is nice reading your thought-provoking articles. In fact, I am also guilty of aversion to Indian languages other than Kannada. I realised my mistake quite late.

kanasu said...

Thanks sunaath :)

Vijaya said...

Very true ... and very well written.
i too have friends who cant read write their mother tongues. I made a conscious decision that i will not speak to my children in english at home. For me, mother tongue is part of my identity, are we complete without it at all?

kanasu said...

Thanks vijaya. And your decision shall prove good :)