Srinagar, Feb 3: In a significant development, the Kashmiri language has transcended geographical boundaries, gaining international prominence by being incorporated into both Microsoft and Google Digital Translators.
This development is set to provide a global audience access to Kashmiri literature, breaking linguistic barriers and allowing Kashmiri writers to showcase their work on the world stage.
Though there are over 130 languages that Google can translate, Kashmiri, a 5000-year-old language, was still not among them.
It is one of the important languages in the Indian subcontinent.
Though it is as old as English, Kashmiri has not flourished the way it should have.
There have been several online petitions to Google for the inclusion of the Kashmir language.
The petitioners have argued that this language has a strong vocabulary system and can cater to the demands of the technological era.
Besides Jammu and Kashmir, it is spoken in many parts of the subcontinent and different parts of the world by the Kashmiri diaspora. Only 5 percent of native Kashmiris can read and write in their mother tongue.
However, with the support of Microsoft and Google, Kashmiri literature is poised to reach a broader audience, marking a crucial step towards preserving and promoting the language globally.
There is an intrinsic connection between a language and its literature.
Kashmiri, as one of the oldest languages globally, boasts a rich literary history with notable figures like Sheikh-ul-Alam (RA), Shamas Faqir, Rasool Mir, and Lala Ded.
This integration not only expands the reach of Kashmiri literature but also underscores the significance of the language itself.
The move aligns with the Jammu and Kashmir Official Languages Bill of 2020, which designated Kashmiri as an official language of the Union Territory.
In a digital world, the inclusion of Kashmiri in Google is seen as a transformative step that will enable people worldwide to access and translate the language effortlessly.
The global recognition of the Kashmiri language by tech giants is warmly welcomed by the local Kashmiri community.
The embrace of Kashmiri by major technology companies marks a momentous occasion for the language, fostering its development and accessibility on a global scale.
Local educational institutions are taking steps to introduce Kashmiri language courses, aiming to instil a sense of pride and connection to the language among the younger generation.
Educational materials and awareness campaigns are being developed to encourage learning and usage.
As Kashmir focuses on preserving its linguistic roots, these multifaceted endeavours are expected to breathe new life into the Kashmiri language, ensuring its continuity and relevance for generations to come.