An uproar, led by none other than Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh, erupted after he sent out a tweet on Sunday – 29th September 2019, following Panjab University (PU)’s authorities decision to treat Urdu as foreign language.
Following the severe criticism and protests in academic as well as political circles, Mr Singh has decided to intervene in the row after the varsity took a controversial decision make its Urdu Department part of the School of Foreign Languages.
Urdu- A Great Indian Language
Mr Singh not only objected to its proposed merger but also confirm to speak to the Vice Chancellor and Senators of the varsity to review decision.
He also hailed Urdu as one of the greatest languages of the country.
“Surprised to learn that @OfficialPU has proposed to make the Urdu Department part of the ‘School of Foreign Languages'”, Captain Amarinder Singh wrote on Twitter using his official handler Sunday.
“Urdu is an Indian language, like all the great languages of our country”, he added. “Will speak to the Vice Chancellor and Senators to review this decision immediately”, the Chief Minister wrote.
Urdu Department Objects
The Urdu Department raised the objection to the merger with departments of Russian, French, German, Chinese and Tibetan languages.
Ali Abbas, Co-ordinator of PU Urdu Department, in a letter written to the PU’s Dean University Instructions (DUI) defended Urdu language’s status in the country.
Where Urdu was born?
He said, “Urdu was born, nurtured and cultured in India during the first two decades of the 13th century by Amir Khusro. From that moment onward, Urdu and Hindi languages have not looked back. Not only this, even Punjabi language was put on the path of development by Baba Farid Ganj Shakar,” as per a leading news agency.
A “wrong impression” is being created by certain elements that Urdu is a foreign language”, asserting that “it is far from the truth”.
3 Languages under one umbrella
The letter stated that, “Urdu, Punjabi and Hindi are the three main languages of India which were later accorded the status of State language at different times.”
Mr. Abbas suggested bringing the three departments under one umbrella of the department of Indian languages. “Or (Urdu Department) may be allowed to function independently as per the present arrangements.”