Mangalore: Tulu Enters Schools as a Language of Study
Daijiworld Media Network – Mangalore (SP)
Mangalore, Mar 27: Friday, March 27 turned to be a historic day for Tulu language and the Tuluvas. On this day, the state government issued an order, permitting Tulu to be taught as a third language in schools located in Dakshina Kannada and Udupi districts. A long-drawn action, followed by persistent persuasion through persons in important positions, has made this possible, even though the decision was long overdue.
Organizations and activists had been pleading with the concerned, to introduce Tulu, which had been listed by Unesco as among the languages on the verge of extinction, although it seemed to be a little exaggerated and hence was received by the people here with skepticism. It is true that with modernization and large scale migration of the people from this part of the state to Mumbai and the Gulf, and also because of the fact that the coastal districts of late, are flooded with workers speaking different languages, Tulu had been showing signs of losing some of its importance and sheen. Tulu Sahitya Academy and its members, had been steadfastly following up with the government to introduce Tulu as a language of study in schools, since the last several years.
Thorugh an order passed on Friday, under secretary in the department of education, M N Somashekhar, has ordered for the introduction of Tulu as a language of study in schools in the twin-districts commencing from the academic year 2010-11, and for preparing the syllabus and text book for the same. Kannada script will be used to teach this language.
Tulu Sahitya Academy has already submitted the draft of the Tulu text book and submitted the same to the department of educational research and training, said Uday Dharmasthala, member of Tulu Sahitya Academy. It is learnt that understanding the genuineness of giving encouragement to Tulu, which is a rich and beautiful language, the script of which is not in use and has been confined only to researchers so far, the government has finally decided to give its nod to start teaching it in schools. Uday has thanked home minister, Dr V S Acharya, Dakshina Kannada district in-charge minister, Krishna J Palemar, primary education minister, Vishweshwar Hegde Kageri, besides the Chief Minister for this decision.
The government and private schools in the two districts have already conveyed their willingness to teach Tulu, to the department of state educational research and training. It may be recalled, that Basel Mission had started teaching Tulu as a language in the schools in 1892 itself, when the British were ruling the country. However, after independence, Tulu seemed to be losing favour with those in decision making positions.