PESHAWAR: The organisers have conveyed in writing to the federal and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa governments the demands made recently by 5th Khyber Pakhunkhwa Languages & Cultures Conference with a call to take them into consideration before implementing any language teaching policy at schools and colleges from the next academic year.
According to a press release, the Gandhara Hindko Board, a Peshawar-based literary, cultural and social welfare organisation, that organised the “5th Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Languages and Cultures Conference” in Peshawar from December 25 to 26, 2010 in collaboration with Forum for Language Initiatives, sent letters to all the relevant government officials to convey them the demands which were made by the experts from 30 languages.
The letter urged the government to pay attention to the demands as these had been put forward unanimously by a representative gathering, which was attended by a total of 400 delegates representing all the 30 languages and cultures of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa— Pashto, Hindko, Seraiki, Khowar, Indus Kohistani, Gojri, Badeshi, Bateri, Chilisso, Dameli, Gawri, Gawarbati, Gawro, Kalasha, Kalkoti, Kamveri, Kataweri, Madaglashti, Pahari, Palula, Pashai, Farsi, Sarakoli, Shina, Sheikhani,Torwali, Ormuri, Ushojo, Wakhi and Yidgha.
The letter is accompanied by the 10 demands made to the government including setting up a Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Languages and Cultures Authority to work for the preservation and promotion of all the languages and cultures, establishment of a Department for Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Languages Studies at all the public sector universities of the province to facilitate higher research, urging the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government to make efforts to preserve and promote the cultural heritage linked to all the languages and a evolve cultural policy that protects all the cultures.
The organisation has also brought to the notice of the government the call made by the conference to impart of the primary education on the basis of mother tongue, not district basis, as there were districts in the province where more than one language was spoken.
The letter has sought language teaching at the educational institutions as optional subject and said the children in all the bilingual and multilingual districts of the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa should be given the choice to select their respective languages while introducing the mother language teaching as a subject in the educational institutions.
Other demands made by the conference and forwarded to the government included introducing all languages of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa in the mother tongue column in the next census and mentioning all the languages in the mother tongue column in the application form of Nadra.The news