Dr Rahi urged to include Gojri in the 8th Schedule of constitution

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Srinagar, Jan 6 (UNI) The Gujjars of Jammu and Kashmir today urged all major political parties to bring a bill in the ensuing Assembly session to include ''Gojri Language'' in the Eighth Schedule of the Constitution of India to treat the tribe as ''Linguistic Minority''.

In a memorandum, issued through the Tribal Research and Cultural Foundation, they have sought the intervention of State Government to recommend the case of Tribal Language ''Gojri'' to center for inclusion in the list of official languages of India.

Giving details of the memorandum, National Secretary of the Foundation Dr Javaid Rahi said that State Government has already recognized Gojri by including it in the 6th Schedule of the constitution.

He said it has been also recognised as the richest ''tribal language'' of India by the National Academy of Letters.

Dr Rahi said being one of the oldest and significant languages of the South Asian sub-continent, Gojri is spoken by Gujjar tribe in 11 states of India and has locus Sandi for its inclusion in the official languages list.

''There is an adequate provision and facilities in Indian Constitution for ethno-linguistic minorities'' Dr Rahi said.

The memorandum futher sought the help of Kashmiri, Dogri and linguistic groups, National political parties, social organisations to justify the cause of tribal population of the state.

He said the Tribal Muslim Gujjar community which form the third largest idenitity of the State having 20 to 25 per cent population strongly demanded constitutional safeguards to their language ''Gojri'' and ethinicity.

''Gojri is one of the ancient languages of India, Dr Rahi said and added historians have traced the origin and practice of Gojri language since B C era.

There are several mentions of this language in ancient religious books written in and around 1st century BC'' the memorandum said.

He said it is the aspiration of millions of people who want that due credit should be given to this ancient language which is serving our motherland for centuries together'' After Kashmiri and Dogri, Gojri is thrid largest spoken languages in Jammu and Kashmir state, he added.

UNI BAS PDT RN1958

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