GUWAHATI, March 26 � Noted Hindi poet Dr Kedar Nath Singh today laid stress on translation of Indian regional language literature into other Indian languages so as to strengthen the multi-coloured diversity of Indian languages, literature and culture for the sake of uniting the nation.
He was presenting the 21st Assam Valley Literary Award to noted litterateur Harekrishna Deka at the Mackhowa ITA Centre for Performing Arts here.
Dr Singh, a former head of the Department of Hindi of the Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi, said that the power of the people lies in their own languages. He also maintained that there is a great need to bring in a change in the attitude of the elite section of the people towards the regional languages and literature of the country. They must deviate from their present stand of laying stress on translating English literary works into their own languages.
He also underlined the need of compiling the history of Indian poetry. But, he cautioned until the translation of regional language poems into the other languages of the country is completed, this goal cannot be achieved. He also read out two poems of Harekrishna Deka that he had translated into Hindi.
In his acceptance speech, Deka said that language cannot be dissociated from the social reality. Language is a socially-conditioned act. Laying stress on writing in one�s own tongue, he said that the objective of wring in one�s own tongue is to serve the cause of the people, whose heritage forms the source of a writer�s creativity. The highest standards in writing can be achieved through sheer professionalism but if regional writers were to peruse mere individual agendas, the community and the language would suffer.
�Assuming that such a situation is at hand some day, I hope our writers won�t forget the fact that one of their basic goals is to preserve the unique character of the tongue in which they write, which it is their duty to enrich and enhance,� he said. He suggested that the Magor Education Trust should release an annual fund for a project to translate selected Assamese texts into English.
The award consists of a scroll of honour, a trophy and a cash amount of Rs four lakh.
The function was also addressed by RS Jhawar and Dulal Sarma of the Williamson Magor Education Trust.