A Garo Hills-centric organisation, the A’chik Conscious Holistically Integrated Krima (ACHIK), has expressed deep regret over the recent statement by the general secretary of the Khasi Authors Society (KAS) over the inclusion of the Khasi and Garo languages in the Eighth Schedule of the Constitution.
Over the weekend, KAS general secretary RP Kharshiing told Highland Post that, if necessary, Khasi should be included in the Eighth Schedule first if Garo does not yet meet the requirements for inclusion and that the latter should not stand in the way of the former.
Today, Macklawrence M Sangma, ACHIK’s education secretary, expressed regret that a “mature organisation” like KAS should use “such immature statements” over the issue.
The Meghalaya Assembly has passed a resolution to include the Khasi and Garo languages in the Eighth Schedule but the matter is still being studied by the central government.
Sangma said that there are better ways for Kharshiing to have put his point across and that he should have avoided using words that “belittle” the status of the Garo language.
Sangma pointed out to Kharshiing that there are Garo communities in several states in the North East as well as West Bengal and Bangladesh, where a Garo MP represents all the tribes of Bangladesh. There are also Garo MLAs in Assam and Tripura and all these signify the strength in numbers of Garo speakers.
Like Khasi, the Garo language is also being studied in schools, colleges and universities, even to the PhD level.
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