Inside Kashmir

Punjab CM writes letter to PM Modi, urges him to intervene to include Punjabi as J&K’s official language

Srinagar: Following the exclusion of Punjabi language in the list of languages of Jammu and Kashmir, the Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh on Thursday sent a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and urged him to intervene to include Punjabi as one of the official languages in Union Territory.
Punjab CM in a letter to PM Modi said that J&K was part of Punjab during the period of Maharaja Ranjit Singh and Punjabi was one of the vernaculars language in those times, adding that the exclusion of Punjabi language has cause avoidable resentment amongst the Punjabi community.

The letter to PM Modi follows.

Dear Prime Minister

The Jammu & Kashmir Languages Bill, 2020 was passed by both the houses of parliament with voice a vote. As per this bill, Kashmiri, Dogri and Hindi are included in the list of official languages in the Union territory of Jammu and Kashmir in addition to the existing Urdu and English. These languages will not be used just as official languages but will also be taught in schools as compulsory subjects. But, unfortunately Punjabi language has not been included in the list.

I may add here that Jammu and Kashmir was part of Punjab during the period of Maharaja Ranjit Singh. Punjabi was one of the vernaculars languages in those times. When J&K came into existence as an independent State, Punjabi was widely spoken language in the State. Punjabi is now the mother tongue of all the Punjabis in Jammu region and is also spoken by Punjabi community living in Kashmir Valley.

It will, therefore, not be appropriate to exclude Punjabi from list of official languages in the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir. Such exclusion has caused avoidable resentment amongst the Punjabi community. I would request you to advise the Ministry of Home, Government of India to reconsider and include Punjabi also as one of the official languages in UT of Jammu and Kashmir.

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