‘Language key to identity, harmony among Odisha tribals’

Odisha Sun Times Bureau

Koraput, Dec 9:

More than 600 representatives from 34 indigenous tribes from 21 districts of Odisha laid emphasis on the importance of language in bringing harmony and shaping identity among tribal communities in the recently concluded Adivasi Ekta Parab at Ektaguda of Koraput district.

Tribals performing traditional dance at Adivasi Ekta Parab
Tribals performing traditional dance at Adivasi Ekta Parab

The three-day tribal festival, organised by organised by RITES Forum, Malkangiri and Adivasi Ekta Sangathan, Koraput, with support from the Adivasi Sangathan Samanwaya Samiti (ASSS) and voluntary organization ActionAid, witnessed the testimony and a visual treat of various forms of tribal dances, traditional costumes, songs and worshipping of their deities in the fest.

The programme was attended by well-known linguist Dr Mahendra Kumar Mishra, Dr Chitta Ranjan Kar and Dr Rajendra Padhy who highlighted the importance of language and literature towards revival of tribal and other indigenous communities and the role of the tribals in the enrichment of their language.

“We must respect our motherland and mother tongue and subsequently our efforts must be directed towards teaching own language to the successors so that language can be protected”, said Saraswati Dani, representative of Kandha tribe from Ganjam district.

“Language is the prime bearer of one’s identity. Otherwise, there is no meaning of belonging to one tribe. The tribals must join hands to thrive their languages,” said Lambodar Sabar, community leader of Saura tribe, in his address.

During the festival, the scripts of tribal languages and books were exhibited and two books on language of the Saura and Gadba tribes were released.


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