Monday, 2 January 2017

A language centre in Punjab with its roots in Pune


2 January 2017

PUNE: An initiative devised by a Pune-based organisation, Sarhad, Bhasha Bhavan is a campus which will provide conducive environment to students, teachers, researchers and scholars working for the Indian languages.

While language can sometimes divide people and communities, it can also be a medium of bringing people together. And that’s exactly the vision of Bhasha Bhavan, which is taking shape in Ghuman in Punjab and has its roots in Pune. An initiative devised by a Pune-based organisation, Sarhad, Bhasha Bhavan is a campus which will provide conducive environment to students, teachers, researchers and scholars working for the Indian languages.

Sanjay Nahar, founder of Sarhad — an organisation dedicated to the cause of people afflicted by violence, from the border regions, through socio-cultural and literary means — said, “The primary aim is that through this Bhavan, language will become a catalyst to get people from various regions together. This shall be achieved by means of facilitating linguistic research, seminars, conventions and field studies for linguistic interaction amongst the known and lesser known Indian languages.”
Nahar added that Bhasha Bhavan aims to celebrate the rich linguistic heritage of India and it shall endeavour to be the medium for bringing together people speaking and exercising diverse languages. It shall act as a conduit for exchange of thoughts and creative concepts through literature.

The reason for choosing Ghuman in Gurdaspur district as the place for setting up the language centre, Nahar says it is the birth place of Sant Namdeo, a poet and saint from Maharashtra who sought to bring people together on the path of devotion irrespective of their caste, creed, geography or language.

The 2-acre land for the construction of the centre has been given by the government of Punjab to Sarhad. The architectural design of the Bhasha Bhavan comprises classrooms for instructional activities, auditorium, seminar hall, library, hostel accommodation, amphitheatre, administrative office and other amenities. While the work of compound wall has concluded, construction of the first phase of Bhasha Bhavan will take almost a year and completion of the entire project may take upto five years.

Unanimous support and inputs by eminent linguistic scholars and writers have been instrumental in formulating the concept of Bhasha Bhavan. One of them being Padma Shri and Sahitya Akademi Awardee Ganesh Devy, founder director of the Bhasha Research and Publication Centre, Vadodara and Adivasi Academy at Tejgadh, Gujarat. Devy says, “There are three types of language schools/institutions running in the country. 

While all universities have their own respective language schools for students, all states have their own language institutions such as Bangla Sahitya Parishad, Marathi Sahitya Parishad, Hindi Sahitya Parishad and likewise, that cater to one major regional language. On national level, institutes like National Book Trust and Sahitya Akademi are for accomplished writers.” So, he says, there is no school or language institution that is meant for those who are neither students nor accomplished. 

Thus, an initiative like Bhasha Bhavan will focus on speakers, writers, poets and littérateurs of various languages working together to promote circulation and life of different languages, he adds.
It is Devy who has visualised the campus with academic focus on four key areas – translation, education in mother language, promotion of minor languages and community linguistic research; and ‘Sant Sahitya’ or the prose and poetry written by various saints. Other scholars, writers and poets who have provided inputs for the Bhavan include Vasant A Dahake, Rajan Khan, Ramdas Phutane and Atamjit Singhji, among others.


0 comments:

Post a Comment