Language Policy & Linguistic Diversity in Nepal: Some Observations


Friday 8 November, 10.30-11.00, E0105

Nepal is a homeland of linguistic, cultural and ethnic diversity where 124 plus languages exist belonging to four major language families viz. Indo-Aryan, Tibeto-Burman, Austro-Asiatic &Dravidian and a language isolate i.e. Kusunda (CBS 2011).Such diversity has been acknowledged as an asset since the time immemorial. Pluralism is an essential part of the linguistic heritage of the people of Nepal. The diversity in terms of languages and cultures is not only the fact of life but also a cherished value. It is the sustaining force of the democracy. Globalization and the impact of fast growing information technology are perceived as a threat to the diversities in the third world countries. There is a widespread fear that the traditional pluralistic societies might be more and more homogenized in the years to come. There is a need to establish proper criteria and policies to address these issues. 

This paper deals with the various activities done by Governmental e.g. Ministry of Education and Culture (CDC), National Planning Commission etc. and Nongovernmental e.g. UNESCO, Tribhuvan University, Nepal Academy, SIL International etc. in Nepal. It also observes the different layers of policy i.e. constitutional and societal that exists in the history of Nepal along with socio-political changes. In conclusion, the paper tries to provide some ideas or recommendations for the new federal country Nepal. 



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