Preservation and Documentation of Threatened Tribal Languages

New Delhi: The endorsement of endangered tribal languages through innovative and cultural programmes does instill a sense of pride among tribal communities. Under the scheme of ‘Support to Tribal Research Institute (TRIs), Ministry of Tribal Affairs extends support to TRIs for carrying out various research & documentation activities including programs for documentation of tribal languages, dialects, art, culture, dance, music and development of bilingual Primers. Accordingly, TRIs are conducting documentation and preservation of endangered tribal languages through preparation of primers, dictionaries and organization of cultural programmes.

Mother Tongue Based Multi-Lingual Education (MTBMLE), an innovative pedagogic initiative which plays a key role in preserving tribal languages is adopted in Andhra Pradesh. This approach bridges gap between home and school languages which enable better learning.

Further, under the component “Financial Assistance for support to Centres of Excellence” of the scheme “Tribal Festival, Research, information and Mass Education”, financial assistance is provided to repute Institution for carrying out research study programmes including documentation of tribal languages. In this regard, Ministry has sanctioned  projects to Bhasha Research and Publication Centre during 2018-19 and 2019-20 which inter- alia covered activity of identification and documentation of threatened/dying languages. The organization has carried out documentation of Korku, Nihali, Kolami, Vadi, Halpati, Dungra Bhili, Dhavadi, Dhatti, Thali, Nahal and Seheriya languages.

The Ministry has also recently developed a digital document repository (repository.tribal.gov.in) where TRIs have now started uploading all the activities, document, research reports, publications, which is available in public domain.

This information was given by Minister of State for Tribal Affairs Smt. Renuka Singh Saruta in a written reply in Lok Sabha today.

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