GUWAHATI, Jan 14 � The lay person as well as experts have started expressing concern over the limited content of Assamese literature and culture on the Internet. Both believe that initiatives need to be launched if these have to carve a niche in the expanding virtual space.
Concerns have grown more pronounced because other languages like Hindi, Telegu, Tamil and Bengali have created a huge content on the Internet, which are accessible round the clock to people living in any part of the world. In comparison, Assamese literature with its own rich heritage suffers from a big handicap.
�During my postings in Assam and other parts of India, I have tried to access the net for materials in Assamese. But it has been a disappointing experience so far,� said Kanak Basumatary, a Central Government employee currently based in Guwahati.
He says that he is worried for the young generation who are so reliant on the internet to get materials. �Will our young ones have a decent chance in getting to know about the classics produced in our local languages?� he asked.
Others like him say that local organizations with vision need to look into the issue. �Developing and producing content for the Internet is important so that people in far away places can also know about their native language and literature said Asma Hussain, a young professional.
Kandarpa Kumar Sarma, an academic at Gauhati University, who has been tracking content related to the Northeast on the Internet, believes there is an acute need for developing language specific tools if the literature and language of Assam have to be placed in the World Wide Web.
In his view, the State Government and IT experts along with other stakeholders must support an initiative to place Assamese language and culture on the internet as it is becoming the most preferred source of information gathering. Individuals as well as academic institutions can play a role in preparing the road map, as such an effort requires careful planning, he mentioned.