TMC MP demands inclusion of Khasi, Garo in 8th schedule of constitution

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India Trinamool Congress raised the demand for the inclusion of Garo and Khasi languages in the Eighth Schedule of the constitution in the Lok Sabha on Tuesday.

TMC MP Sudip Bandopadhyay, while raising the pertinent issue in the parliament said that Article 29 of the Constitution states that a section of citizens having a distinct language, script, or culture has the right to conserve the same.

“Under the Meghalaya State Legislature Act 2005, Garo and Khasi have been declared associate official languages of the state”, he said.

He said Khasi is an Astro-Asiatic language spoken primarily in Meghalaya and the hill areas of Assam.

“Garo is a Tibeto-Burmese language of the Boro-Jingpko group, spoken in Meghalaya, Assam, Tripura, Nagaland. According to the Census 2011, there are over 13 lakh (46.5%) Khasi speakers and 9 lakh (31.5%) Garo speakers. The issue in inclusion of the two languages has been the lack of their own original scripts”, he said.

On September 27, 2018, the Meghalaya Legislative Assembly adopted a resolution to petition the Central Government to include the Khasi and Garo languages in the eighth schedule of the constitution.

The TMC MP urged the Centre to take cognizance of the state’s demand.