`India’s classical languages - Sanskrit, Kannada, Telugu, Tamil’

December 23rd, 2008 - 7:10 pm ICT by IANS  

Ambika SoniNew Delhi, Dec 23 (IANS) Kannada, Telugu, Sanskrit and Tamil are the four classical languages of India, Tourism and Culture Minister Ambika Soni informed the Rajya Sabha Tuesday.Soni said the government has not taken any view in classifying Malayalam as another classical language as they have not received any representation from the Kerala government.

She said Kannada and Telugu were notified as classical languages Oct 31 after the proposal was cleared by a committee formed by the culture ministry.

Soni said so far Tamil, Sanskrit, Kannada and Telugu have been classified as “classical languages”.

Giving details about the factors that determine the eligibility of a language to be classified as classical language, Soni said these were high antiquity of its early texts or recorded history over a period of 1,500-2,000 years and a body of ancient literature or texts considered valuable heritage by generations of speakers.

Also, the language’s literary tradition should be original and not borrowed from another language, she added.

“As a classical language, no view has been presented to the Indian government by the Kerala government that Malayalam language should be given recognition,” the minister said.

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