Inclusion of Khasi and Garo language in 8th schedule

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Chief Minister Conrad K Sangma on Thursday said the Ministry of Home Affairs in its reply to the state’s request said that the Centre is conscious of the sentiments and requirements for inclusion of other languages in the Eighth Schedule to the Constitution.

Replying to a query raised by West Shillong legislator Mohendro Rapsang in the Assembly, Sangma said there are several similar requests pending with the Government of India.

“The reply dated September 30, last year from the Ministry of Home Affairs, to our request is quoted: “As the evolution of dialect and language is a dynamic process, influenced by socio-cultural, economic and political developments, it is difficult to fix any criterion for languages, whether to distinguish them from dialect, or for inclusion in the Eighth Schedule to the Constitution. The earlier attempts, through the Pahwa (1996) and Sitakant Mohapatra (2003) Committees, to evolve such fixed criteria have been inconclusive.

The Government of India is conscious of the sentiments and requirements for inclusion of other languages in the Eighth Schedule. Such requests have to be considered keeping in mind these sentiments and other relevant considerations,” he said.

The chief minister also informed that the state government had sent DO letter to Union Home Minister on August 25, last year followed by DO letter dated November 17, to urge upon the Government of India to strongly consider on the proposal for inclusion of Khasi and Garo languages in the 8th Schedule of the Constitution of India.

Recently, during the visit of the Union Home Minister to the state on January 23, a memorandum was submitted where the matter was also included for his kind consideration, he said.

Earlier a DO letter was also sent to the Chairperson, National Commission for Scheduled Tribes on May 28, 2019 urging upon him to follow up the matter with the Government of India, he added.