Ferozepur (Punjab), July 28 : Could you believe that Punjabi is being ignored in Punjab and of all places in Ferozepur district ? That is the claim of Pakistan Radio in its Punjabi Darbar programme.
Residents of Ferozepur were in for a surprise recently to hear in the Punjabi Darbar programme that the Punjab Government was sidelining Punjabi language to promote Hindi at workplaces and in the education system of the State.
Talking to ANI's team people in Dulatpur Village of Ferozepur district rubbished claims by the Pakistan Radio. They said that the factual position is that Punjabi language was prominently being used across the State.
They said that Punjabi language is taught from standard one to intermediate. Not only in schools, but Punjabi is taught also in colleges at graduate and post-graduate levels.
"A government order is already in existence that in offices priority should be given to Punjabi in paper work. Punjabi is now official language all over the state. Though there are suggestions to teach English language from class three , it doesn't mean that Punjabi is ignored," said Vaneeta Dheer, a schoolteacher in Daulatpur
"There are some people who are spreading rumors that Punjabi language is gradually disappearing in state. The reality is that we are actively promoting Punjabi," Vaneeta added.
The residents said Punjabis and non-Punjabis share a strong bond of friendship and brotherhood between them.
And Punjabis settled abroad are sending their children to schools in Punjab and insist that they learn Punjabi language and Punjabi culture.
Saheb Ram, another resident of Daulatpur Village, said: "Despite being from Bagadi community I read Punjabi newspapers and speak Punjabi. In Punjab, everyone talks in Punjabi and works in Punjabi. The relations of Bagadi community with Punjabi community are very good."
"Even in areas adjoining Punjab, Punjabi is being used extensively. Near Rajasthan, touching border area where Bagadis reside in majority, relations with other communities are very cordial," he added.
Rajvindar Singh, a member of Panchayat in Daulatpur, said: "In our village, people from different communities like Bagadi and Sikhs are living in brotherhood and even participate in various occasions like elections together peacefully. We all speak Punjabi."
Leave alone Punjab, even in the capital Delhi Punjabi is spoken and understood by all. In fact, Punjabi is now a universal language, understood all over India, in Pakistan and even in different parts of the world.