Include Punjabi in official language list of J&K, says Amarinder

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Punjab CM urges Modi to advise Home Ministry to reconsider and review the list.

Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh on Wednesday sought Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s intervention for the inclusion of Punjabi in the official list of languages of Jammu and Kashmir.

In a letter to the Prime Minister, Captain Singh urged him to advise the Union Ministry of Home Affairs to reconsider and review the official list and include Punjabi also as one of the official languages in the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir.

Asserting that he was voicing the resentment of the Punjabi community over the exclusion of Punjabi from the list of official languages, Captain Singh pointed out that Jammu and Kashmir was a part of Punjab during the era of Maharaja Ranjit Singh, with Punjabi one of the vernacular language of the region.

When Jammu and Kashmir came into existence as an independent State, Punjabi was a widely spoken language in the State and is now the mother tongue of all the Punjabis in the Jammu region, besides being spoken by the Punjabi community living in the Kashmir Valley, he wrote.

The Chief Minister pointed out that under the Jammu-Kashmir Languages Bill, 2020, which was passed by both the Houses of Parliament with voice vote in September 2020, Kashmiri, Dogri and Hindi were included in the list of official languages in the Union Territory, in addition to the existing Urdu and English. Unfortunately, Punjabi was not included in the list of languages which are not just official languages now of the Union Territory but will also be taught in schools as compulsory subjects, he added.

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