Experts prepare phonetic notations for Urdu characters in Aligarh Muslim University ,Dept of Linguistics workshop

Aligarh: The Department of Linguistics, Aligarh Muslim University (AMU) has a solution to prevent slow shrinking of Urdu into a language written and read by only a handful of people as experts from the University and all over India prepared a chart of phonetic notations for special Urdu characters during a five-day workshop on ‘To Develop Phonetic Notation for Special Urdu Characters’, which concluded on Tuesday.

Speaking about out the Roman alphabets of Urdu characters, prepared by teachers, language experts, research scholars and students during the workshop; Dr Zubeida Begum, Bangalore based Urdu expert said, “These syllables, will be handed over to the National Council for Promotion of Urdu Language (NCPUL), Ministry of Human Resource Development, Government of India, New Delhi to make Urdu understandable beyond regions and ethnicity.”

Speaking at the valedictory function, Prof Masud Anwar Alavi, Dean, Faculty of Arts remarked that the workshop was a result of the quest to bring Urdu back to the forefront.

He added: “With these new phonetic notations for Urdu characters, the appeal and influence of Urdu language can once again cut across classes and regions.”

Prof S N Zeba, Department of English emphasised that Urdu reflects the syncretic and accommodating nature of Indian culture and there is a need to make it reach all corners of the country.

She pointed out that since it is time that Urdu should be taken from its place in historical books to the digital stage; there is a need to adapt new notations to make the language reach the youth.

Guest of Honour, Prof Mohamed Quamrul Hooda Faridi said that the workshop has been successful in making Urdu more accessible, with special characters interactively available in Roman.

“It is hoped that there will be widespread positive response from people across the country and the language will be promoted and pursued in depth,” he added.

Prof Imtiaz Hasnain, Department of Linguistics said that the idea of developing these Roman letters to represent Urdu characters was initiated by Bangalore based Urdu poetess, Dr Shaista Yusuf, who discussed it with AMU faculty members and today we stand after successfully preparing a chart of notations for special Urdu characters.

Prof M Ali Jauhar, Department of Urdu spoke about the five-days of intensive, thorough and vigorous hardwork by the experts to come out with a way of making Urdu more accessible.

Welcoming the guests, Prof Mohammad Jahangeer Warsi, Chairman, Department of Linguistics pointed out that the workshop has produced a high-accuracy annotated phonetic system with correct pronunciations that allows non-Urdu speakers to quickly understand the language and it is hoped that this chart will allow people across cultures a brisk handle of the language.

Dr Nazrin B Laskar conducted the programme, while Dr Abdul Aziz Khan proposed the vote of thanks.

Dr Shamim Fatima and Mehwish Mohsin read the workshop report.

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