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Classical language status UPSC NOTE

 Why in news

  • Amid demand for classical status for many languages, the Union government has decided to tweak the criteria for giving the special tag.

  • The Linguistics Expert Committee of the Culture Ministry submitted a report on October 10 last year, suggesting changes

What is classical language

  • A classical language is any language with an independent literary tradition and a large body of ancient written literature

  • The Ministry of Culture provides the guidelines regarding Classical languages.

  • Guidelines for declaring a language as ‘Classical’ are:

    • High antiquity of its early texts/recorded history over a period of 1500-2000 years;

    • A body of ancient literature/texts, which is considered a valuable heritage by generations of speakers;

  • The literary tradition be original and not borrowed from another speech community;

  • The classical language and literature being distinct from modern, there may also be a discontinuity between the classical language and its later forms or its offshoots.

  • Once a language is notified as a Classical language, the Human Resource and Development Ministry provides certain benefits to promote it:

    • Two major annual international awards for scholars of eminence in classical Indian languages

  • A Centre of Excellence for studies in Classical Languages is set up

  • The University Grants Commission is requested to create, to start with at least in the Central Universities, a certain number of Professional Chairs for the Classical Languages so declared


  • Recently, External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar declared that the Government of India has chosen to include Farsi (Persian) as one of the nine classical languages in India under the New Education Policy (in addition to Pali and Prakrit)


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Learnerz IAS | Concept oriented UPSC Classes in Malayalam: Classical language status UPSC NOTE
Classical language status UPSC NOTE
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Learnerz IAS | Concept oriented UPSC Classes in Malayalam
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