As many as 250 languages have died in last 50 years and most of these extinct languages belonged to tribal communities, Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu on Saturday said and called for active participation from all sections of society for preservation and promotion of tribal culture.
“When a language dies, it symbolises the downfall of a culture, a civilisation, a creative tradition, Naidu said in his speech at the ‘Adivasi Mahotsav -2020’at Ramnagar, in Madhya Pradesh on Saturday.
Urging universities to promote local tribal culture, Naidu said today’s youth should be made aware of tribal culture and values as tribal communities represent the ancient most culture and values of India. “Our younger generations should be made aware of their eternal values and traditions”.
Pointing out that preservation of tribal culture was not the responsibility of governments alone, Naidu said the youth today should care for the tribal history and heritage.
“When hotels can serve foreign cuisine, why can’t they promote local tribal flavours which are more suited to our bodily and climatic conditions? Why can’t city youth pursue tribal music and instruments as their hobby?” he asked.
Lauding the opening of National Tribal University in Amarkantak, Naidu exhorted the scholars to research upon tribal languages, literature, folk song and crafts.
“We should include the traditional tribal knowledge in our intellectual and academic discourse else these knowledge systems may go extinct in the future,” he said.
Bringing out the relevance of tribal way of life, the vice president said, “Today when the world is beset by the problems such as global warming and climate change and increased frequency of natural disasters, our tribal communities can show us the path of sustainable development”.
Naidu appreciated tribal communities for respecting nature and keeping harmonious relations with their environment and all living beings. Calling these as the great characteristics of the tribal cultures, he said the world can learn a lot from these communities.
“Mindless exploitation of nature will lead to disastrous consequences,” he added.
Naidu also said that while preserving their unique lifestyle and culture, the tribal people should be made equal partner in India’s development journey. There is need for constant and constructive dialogue between the administration and local communities, he added.
Citing various constitutional provisions for the welfare of tribal areas, he said the development of tribal communities is a prerequisite for inclusive development. He also highlighted various government schemes for the welfare of tribal communities such as Vanbandhu KalyanYojana, minimum support price (MSP) for forest produce.
The vice president also expressed deep concern at the lower than average literacy rates among the tribal communities and appealed to them to send their children to schools. He urged all to send their daughters to schools and make the Beti Bachao -Beti Padhao programme into a successful movement.
Also, emphasising the need for the promotion of entrepreneurship among the tribal youth, Naidu opined that linking TRIFED with the wide marketing network of ‘Khadi and Village Industries Commission’ would provide access to a larger market for tribal handicrafts. He also suggested pushing online marketing of tribal products.Venkaiah Naidu, Adivasi Mahotsav 2020, Tribals, Tribal culture, tribal languages