Posts filed under ‘Grammer’

Open Letter to PM: Kosli Language should be in 8th schedule

Following report is from

IN THE past few years the central government has included different Indian languages in the 8th schedule of the Indian constitution by the recommendation of various committees.  It shows prudence on the part of the Indian government in being flexible in recognizing the complexity of linguistic diversity in India. In 2003, the 93rd Constitutional Amendment was passed which enabled the government to have a fresh look at the possibility of inclusion of other Indian languages in the 8th schedule. Consequently, four languages, viz. Bodo, Dogri, Santhali and Maithili were judged to be included in the 8th schedule. We the people of Western Odisha were hoping that Kosli be included as well because our situation is identical to that of Maithili as it is explained in the following sections of this memo.

Therefore, we humbly request you to examine our request by the same yardstick used to include the four recent languages in the 8th schedule of the Indian Constitution. It is said that the right of a mother tongue is a basic cultural right of the people which link them with their economy, socio-cultural system and political right. UNESCO has recognized that the concept of language equality among all languages is important irrespective of whether the languages have a script or not. Furthermore, the Indian government is promoting the mother tongue based multilingual education to reduce the school drop-out rates and to enhance communication using a mother tongue. This is a good and praiseworthy initiative taken by the Indian government. In this regard, the Kosli language (also called Kosli-Sambalpuri, Sambalpuri) is the mother tongue of ten districts of western Orissa (Kosal region) viz. Balangir, Bargarh.In addition, a large population of Raipur, Mahasamund and Raigarh districts of Chhattisgarh state also uses Kosli language as their mother tongue.  The Kosli language and literature is vast as it is blessed with a group of dedicated writers. A large number of books are published regularly and available in the Kosli language. Epics such as ‘Ramayana’, ‘Mahabharat’ and ‘Meghduta’ are translated into Kosli language. Kosli language has a rich literature in different areas viz. Architecture, Astrology, Mantra-Tantra-Yantra science, Medicine, Yoga, Music, Arts, Dance, Drama, Yoga, Philosophy, and Grammar. Kosli dramas, songs, and dances are popular across the world. Kosli dramas are highly acclaimed and regularly staged at various places of India. For instance, a recent Kosli language play ‘Maau’ is aiming to enter the Limca record book by becoming the biggest ever stage show of its kind in the world.

The Kosli language cinema is attracting worldwide attention. ‘Bukha (Hunger)’ a Kosli language movie has won the Indian national award, an international jury award at the Gijón International Film Festival, Spain and was selected for World Rural Film Festival, Aurrilac, France. The All India Radio (viz. Sambalpur, Balangir, and Bhawanipatna) and television channels (viz. Nxatra news and OTV) are broadcasting their news and entertainment programs in Kosli language. More than five registered newspapers and seventy magazines are available in Kosli language. Unfortunately, Kosli language has no political and official support although there was a discussion in the Indian parliament to include Kosli language in the 8th Schedule of the Indian constitution. Recently, the Odisha government has recommended the Ho language for its inclusion in the 8th schedule of the Indian constitution. This is a welcome step. Along this line, we sincerely hope that the Odisha government will recommend Kosli language for the inclusion in the 8th Schedule of the Indian constitution.  For the people of western Orissa it is not just a language but a way of life that propel progresses and harmony in the region.

The inclusion of Kosli language in the 8th schedule of the Indian constitution will have following positive impacts on the people of western Orissa.

The key to development of western Odisha is the Kosli language. Drop-out rate in schools particularly in rural and Adivashi area can be ascribed to, among other variables, teaching in Odia language which is not used in day to day communication. It is as if learning through an alien language. Kosli is the dominant means of communication throughout western Odisha. Though we have several tribal languages, all tribals have functional capability in Kosli not Odia. That is the main reason why KBK has been found literacy rate is so low. We also have large population of scheduled caste in the area who are similarly impacted. It has caused various problems viz. i) the overall marks of students from western Orissa are lower than the students of coastal Orissa and ii) many bright students of western Orissa fail again and again in both 10th and 10+2 examinations because of their poor knowledge in Odia language. Recognition of Kosli language will facilitate education among the kids of western Orissa in their mother tongue and solve the above mentioned problems.

Freedom of expression in legislative and social sphere: In spite of aggressive Odianisation, population of western Orissa has retained Kosli language for day to day communication. In large population centers where people of other states, especially from Bihar, Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh, Bengal, Punjab, Gujarat and other North Indian area have come to work, they have opted Kosli instead of Odia because the accent of Kosli follows North Indian pattern. And when poor Koslis go out of their area to seek employment they choose to go to other Hindi speaking area such as Chhattisgarh, U.P, Bihar and Jharkhand instead of Odia speaking area in Odisha.

Inclusion of Kosli language in the 8th schedule of the Indian Constitution will promote the culture and heritage of western Orissa. Keeping the above mentioned points into consideration we request you to recommend the inclusion of Kosli language in the 8th schedule of the Indian Constitution.

September 24, 2011 at 10:47 am Leave a comment

Few pictures of Dr Nilamadhab Panigrahi: A pioneer of Kosli language movement

Click here to download the PDF

August 9, 2011 at 5:09 pm Leave a comment

Mother tongue based multilingual education: Kosli language as a medium of instruction in the schools of western Odisha

Following paragraph is taken from

 …………….Two states in India – Andhra Pradesh (AP) and Orissa – have started mother tongue based multilingual education (MLE) on a pilot basis for tribal children. AP started MLE in 8 tribal mother tongues (MTs) in 2004 and Orissa in 10 tribal MTs in 2006. The states have the program in over 500 schools with first batch of children in grades IV and V, respectively, in AP and Orissa; AP is adding over 2300 schools in the year 2011 and Orissa is scheduled to add 500 schools. Few more states are also expected to join the MLE movement in India. Jharkhand, Assam and Chhattisgarh are already planning to start MLE in the states. Mother tongue based MLE is now an international movement especially for those from dominated minor, minority and marginalized languages and suffering negative consequences of submersion and assimilation forms of education in non-mother tongue languages ……………………….

The above thing is an eye opener for all of us. This is a good start by the government. Along this line Kosli language should be used as the medium of instruction in the schools of western Odisha districts and Athmallik subdivision. On this topic please see our earlier discussions:

 ● Kosli language waits for govt’s nod for inclusion in the Indian constitution

Parliament debates on Kosli language

● Recent advances on Kosli language

● The Sambad (Odia daily) on our discussion of Kosli language

Responses to the article entitled ‘Matrubhasha O Maanak Bhasha’ by Debi Prasanna Patnaik published in the ‘Sambad’ on 22nd July 2011 (Part I)

Responses to the article entitled ‘Matrubhasha O Maanak Bhasha’ by Debi Prasanna Patnaik   published in the ‘Sambad’ on 22nd July 2011 (Part II)

● Dr Arjun Purohit’s response to Debi babu’s article on Kosli language

● Kosli language should be a subject and the medium of instruction in primary classes : Dr. Mahendra Kumar Mishra

July 31, 2011 at 3:05 pm 4 comments

Recent advances on Kosli language

The Kosli language is spoken in ten districts and Athmallik subdivision of western Orissa. In addition a large population of Raipur, Mahasamund and Raigarh districts of Chhattisgarh state speak Kosli language as their mother tongue.

A large number of books and magazines  are published in Kosli language. Kosli songs and dances are popular across the world. Apart from this Kosli drama festivals are regularly organized in various places of western Orissa.

There was discussion in the Indian parliament to include the Kosli language in the 8th Schedule of the Indian constitution. Some of the reports are here:

Kosli language waits for govt’s nod for inclusion in the Indian constitution

Parliament debates on Kosli language

Recently, various e-forums have debated the use of Kosli language as a medium of instruction in the school. In addition, many also supported the inclusion of Kosli language in the 8th Schedule of the Indian constitution. Here are the links to some of the discussion happened in media, e-forums and Facebook:

● The Sambad (Odia daily) on our discussion of Kosli language

● Responses to the article entitled ‘Matrubhasha O Maanak Bhasha’ by Debi Prasanna Patnaik published in the ‘Sambad’ on 22nd July 2011 (Part I)

● Responses to the article entitled ‘Matrubhasha O Maanak Bhasha’ by Debi Prasanna Patnaik   published in the ‘Sambad’ on 22nd July 2011 (Part II)

Dr Arjun Purohit’s response to Debi babu’s article on Kosli language

Kosli language should be a subject and the medium of instruction in primary classes : Dr. Mahendra Kumar Mishra

Depending on the users and regions following terms are used as a synonym to Kosli language. Following are some of the terms:

● Koshali language/Kosali language

● Samalpuri-Koshali language/Samalpuri-Kosli language

● Sambalpuri-Koshali or Sambalpuri-Kosli language

PS: If you have any suggestions please contact me on this email ID:

July 31, 2011 at 11:20 am 2 comments

Kosli language should be a subject and the medium of instruction in primary classes : Dr. Mahendra Kumar Mishra

Following comment was posted in our earlier posting. For the convenience of readers we are posting it here.

After reading the above comments on Kosli language and literature   I   have to offer my views.

1.South Kosal is a tract identified with current western Orissa adjoining  eastern Chhtishgarh. Kushavati Nagra is found to be the capital of Kush – the second son of  Lord Ramachandra.

2. South Kosal is found in the puranic and Sanskrit canons which   have the records of   ruling dynasties.

3. Koshalananda Kaavaya is written  for the Chauhan Kings in 16th  century AD  is  the evidence of  Kosal  as  Sambalpur and  interestingly  Pundit Gangadhar Mishra was  from Puri, a court poet  in  Sambalpur  Raj-durbar.

4. Dr Suniti Kumar Chaterjee, a noted indologist and  historical linguist mentioned   in his work (1967  Dr Artaballabh  Memorial speech in Orissa Sahity Academy ),  Dr. Krushna Chandra Panigrahi, a noted historian, and  Dr. Khageswar   Mahapatra, a linguist, in their   work  have  mentioned about the   distinct language  of South Koshala which is not intelligible to the Oriya people. Even to day, the pure   oral tradition of Kosli language is unintelligible to Oriya people.

5.The  writings of  Dr Harekrishna Mahatab indicates that  Kosal  was never a part of  present Orissa before  the  British Raj. He was unable to face Maharaja RN Singh Deo as  stated Sri Nilamani the auto biography.  Formation of Orissa is  a modern aspect in which the contribution of  Britishers and Madhubabu can be mentioned. But to my knowledge till  the merger of 26 garjat  Orissa   was never conceptualized as a state.

Presently  the National   Curriculum   Framework  2005  and  Right to Education Act  2009 has emphasized the linguistic Human Rights of   children  to   pursue their  learning in primary   schools.   Based on this Act  and  NCF  2005 , ten tribal languages in Orissa  has been adopted  to teach the tribal  children in mother tongue.   The Munda and Kishan  languages  of  Sundargarh has been  accordingly taken up. Thus it would   be proper now to take up Kosli as the medium of instruction in primary classes.  Kosli should be a subject and also the medium of instruction in primary stage at least from Class I to class V.

Oriya colonialism is unfortunately created a hegemony  among the people not only of  Kosal  but also  to the Adivasis of Orissa for which  the  self hate  for one’s won language  and culture   had been created. But now the turning point is that many tribal languages are regenerated and revitalized by the speakers   community and no qualification is required for that. Consider when Sweden was subduing Finland over a period of 300 years and the oral tradition of Finland became the written literature of Finland. Now Kalevala – the national  epic of  Finland  is Kalevala  which   was sung  by the  unlettered singers  and  now it is a widely known as  National epic translated in to 204 languages of  the globe.

Now the rich oral literature of Kosal followed by hundreds of writers from Kosal can revitalize its own culture and language, not only to restore it for language sake but the epistemology and worldview that is created across the ages.

Dr. Mahendra Kumar Mishra

July 30, 2011 at 7:07 am 4 comments

Dr Arjun Purohit’s response to Debi babu’s article on Kosli language

Following write-up was sent to various e-forums by Dr. Arjun Purohit. This is was his final response to Debi babu’s article. Earlier he has sent three massive emails as response. Here is the link to the previous postings  (Part I and Part II) .

The force of language Dr.Patnaik uses against inclusion of Koshali in 8 th schedule is not warranted nor necessary because we both in education field know that educating kids through the medium of native language especially in formative years will facilitate learning. So why such denial ? A possible explanation may be found the way our history books are written. For instance, Dr.Harekrushna Mahatab who has been lionised in Orissa for his political leadership as well as for his contribution to Orissa history, writes the very first sentence in the first volume of two volume book ODISHA ITIHASA(1948),”Today what is understood as the state  Odisha  consists of three ancient  provinces called Udra, Odra or Oudra,Utkala and Kalinga”.(my translation) Really ? No Koshala ? So what is the status of Koshala then ? Is it a colony of Odisha ? Just an appendage of no consequence ? We do not see our face in this definition of Orissa. We are simply persona non grata, who do not deserve to be recognised as legitimate citizens of Orissa with equal rights and privileges.. Our language and heritage simply do not matter. Is it just innocent omission ? A few years later Siba Prasad Das wrote his classic SAMBALPUR ITIHAS(1962),reprinted in 1969 and I find in it  an appreciative note by Dr.Mahatab written on September 16,1967. However the quoted statement still appears in the third edition of Dr.Mahatab’s book published in 1977. For generations this book has been used as the text book on Orissa history in schools and colleges. It is lot more than just a Freudian slip because this attitude  permeates into all the de facto policies and procedures practiced in Orissa which has resulted in the sorry mess in  Koshal. The same attitude is reflected in Dr.Patnaik’s essay.

Why it is so difficult to accept us for what we are ? Dr.Patnaik wonders whether asking for recognition may lead to  aspiration for a separate state ? Aspiration for recognition of Koshali in 8 th schedule is an issue which must be judged by its own merit whether or not in future Koshal may get status of separate state. Should we deprive Koshali kids’ access to education so that in future they may aspire for  the same rights and privileges of kids in the coastal area or demand for a separate state ?  This is akin to the same thinking behind denying education to Sudras to prevent them to aspire the same status Brahmins and Kshatriyas. This is why Rama killed Sambhuka the Sudra when he was found to be studying Vedas. For the same reason Drona demanded that the thumb of right hand of Ekalabya be chopped off because someday he might be challenging Pandava and Kaurava princes. Until a couple of generations ago girls were discouraged to go to school because in future they may not be “ideal” wives. Women in Afganistan must be cooked inside their burqa all the time even in hot weather so that they may not get amorous attention from males. Slaves inU.S.were not allowed to study even private so that they could be as smart as their masters………..

Dr.Patnaik acknowledges the abominable attitude  and treatment by coastal folks towards Koshalis and folks inSouth Orissawhich has resulted in severe economic deprivation. That is precisely why both Koshalis and folks fromSouth Orissa(Kalinga Pradesh) are looking for separation.

Demand for recognition of Koshali is primarily to facilitate education of the kids, enrichment of our language and literature by accessing resources available  assigned to languages in the 8 th schedule and some measure of self respect. Separation of Koshala will depend upon many other variables besides self evident economic disparity. Our neighbours to the west(Chhattisgarh) and to the north(Jharkhand) are already separated. Telengana is about to be separated. Creation of Gorkhaland is already announced though they are working out the actual framework. Language or numerical largeness are no longer the definitive issue  in creation of a new state. In the case of Orissa, one notices a steady erosion of trust in provincial government, which is reflected in voting pattern in Koshal area. Governance has deteriorated with steady rising of Naxalism. And there is a host of other factors which are converging towards separation. By the same token, I also want the fellow Koshalis to realise that having Koshali recognised is not going to solve all the problems in Koshal. So depending on the language card alone is just a mirage. In this posting the focus is on language; so I will not digress into other issues here.

Dr.Patnaik pointedly asks whether the demand for such inclusion is aimed at garnering various awards. Great works of literature, music or painting are rarely done for external rewards. These are expressions of artists’ expressions of primordial artistic impulse and rewards are mostly intrinsic. But by denying the modes of expression, both the artists and the public are losers. Great literature can come from even the most primitive language or colloquial language. Julius Axelford and Issac Basevis Singer got Nobel Prize in Literature writing in Yiddish, a dialect spoken in Jewish ghettoes inPolandandHungary. A Sniti Mishra from Balangir mesmerised wholeIndiarecently for her songs. A Mr. Patra from Khariar was one of only three Indians invited to the recent Royal wedding. The Royal family was impressed with his writings in English.A Debasis Rath from Sonepur developed much used Oriya fonts for writing in computer. A Nil Madhab Panda from Sonepur again produces more than fifty movies but not much known in Orissa. Watch his new award winning movie I AM  KALAM scheduled to be released in India.The list is long.What genius might be lurking and dying in the vine in Adivashi population, who constitute nearly fourth of Orissa population, is any body’s guess. Anthropologists tell us that we have sixty different groups of tribals. Their unique experience may be a mine of unique artistic impulses which go undiscovered. Both Koshala and Orissa are losers when we can not provide any modes of expression. So rewards will come on its own. Our responsibility is to find stimulate the artistic and literary genius.

The real focus of Orissa as well as Koshal should be as to how to be ready for the 21 st century in stead of wasting our energy in minor peripheral and often inconsequential issues. When Indiais emerging as an economic super power, Orissa and Koshal occupy the unenviable position of bottom of the heap in almost every sociological index in spite of their vast natural endowment. Crucial to rise up to our potential is to upgrade our human resource. In Koshal, a thin layer of developed human resource is confined to major urban area, and as you proceed more  and more towards less urban area, human resource competency declines steadily. We have a humongous Adivashi population who have not participated in any serious developmental enterprises. No matter how much industrial/mining activities take place in our area, without matching upgrading human resource, Koshal and Orissa will never rise. Ever neglected Adivashi population has been attracting attention for the past decade or so for the wrong reasons: Naxalism, displacement from their habitat or similar reasons. So what language has to do with all these. Plenty. To be able to launch any educational/training programs, the teachers have to work with them through the medium of communication used by the target population. Simply throwing money in to these projects will not work. In Koshal area we have one advantage.In my experience even the reomotest tribal community has functional capacity to communication in Koshali. This is one of the major reasons I will champion the cause for Koshali to be included in the 8th schedule. Such inclusion will provide at least one stepping stone to bridge the gap between educational endeavour and the readiness of tribal kids. Hopefully, we will develop many more stepping stones.

Finally, I thank Dr.Patnaik for bringing this issue even though I disagree with much of his assertions. I  also thank the readers for their patience for going through this series. As a recompense I am posting a site for a Koshali movie directed by young friend Saket Sahu, who also edits BENIthe great Koshali magazine:

If you know Bengali, please estimate the similarity and intelligibility between Oriya and Oriya. Then estimate on the same criteria the difference between Oriya and Koshali.


Arjun Purohit, Canada
PS: As usual be kind to me and ignore the typos

July 29, 2011 at 2:07 pm 5 comments

Responses to the article entitled ‘Matrubhasha O Maanak Bhasha’ by Debi Prasanna Patnaik published in the ‘Sambad’ on 22nd July 2011 (Part II)

Following are the responses to an article entitled ‘Matrubhasha O Maanak Bhasha’ by Debi Prasanna Patnaik.  The responses are taken from different e-forums.

Before I wrote this part, I read and reread Dr.Patnaik’s piece , and it seems we are in déjà vu all over again. In later half of 19thcentury, people of Orissa division of Bengal Presidency were fighting for the very survival of Oriya as a language against stiff opposition from a strong Bengali lobby. On March 12,1869 Rajendra Lal Mitra, an eminent historiographer of Bengal who had come to Cuttack in order to compile a book on the antiquities of Orissa’s art and sculpture, said in a meeting held at Cuttack that as long as Oriya was not removed as a language it was impossible to think in terms of progress of Orissa. About the same time, Uma Charan Halder, the then Deputy Inspector of Schools claimed that Oriya people would stand to benefit if only Oriya were written in Bengali script. Again in 1870,Kantilal Bose, Head Master of Balasore School, brought out a book ”Oriya Swatantra Bhasha Nai” and sent it to R.L.Martin, Inspector of Schools. A signature campaign started under the direction of Sibdas Bhattacharya, Deputy Inspector of Schools at Balasore, for continuation of Bengali as the medium of instruction in the schools of Orissa. This was a time when Bengalis dominated in all spheres of civil service including education in Orissa. However, though many Bengalis were supportive of this stand, a good portion of them joined their hands with their Oriya brethren in their demand for Oriya to be the medium of instruction, such as Baikuntha Nath De, Gauri Shankar Ray and Radhanath Roy among others.For an exhaustive summary of the struggle, please read THE RAJ:NTIONALSTS AND REFOMS- LAND,LAW AND GOVERNMENT ,ORISSA:1912-1939 by Amal Kumar Mishra.

Is not the struggle the same between Koshali  and Oriya ? Now the Oriya pundits are using the unwise tactics against Koshali, and blocking at every turn any chance of getting into 8 th schedule. Probably they are afraid that recognition of Koshali as a separate language somehow diminishes the viability of Oriya in some way. History does not support such fears. After the struggle, Bengali rose from strength to strength, eventually Rabi Tagore getting Nobel prize in literature. And look at Oriya. Oriya has blossomed when Oriya speaking people had mastery over their own destiny. Oriya writers have embellished their literature in to great heights. Sitakant Mahapatra recently became awardee of Bharatabhusan, the highest award of the nation. Future will tell how Koshali will fare in coming years, but if the record of last few years is any indication, future looks very bright. So Dr. Patnaik need not fear on the account of recognition of Koshali. For blooming and blossoming of Oriya depends on the creative imagination of Oriya writers, and that is where he and other ardent lovers of Oriya should focus rather than indulging in trying to block Koshali from getting recognition as a language. If at all there would be any danger to Oriya as a language, it may come from Oriyas themselves. Just look at his own back yard inBhubaneswar. Oriya kids are leaving Oriya schools in droves opting for English medium schools even though it costs a king’s ransom for the option.

I am a little intrigued with the tone of the Sambad piece under scrutiny. Perhaps Dr.Patnaik did not mean convey such tone, but it comes across as paternalistic. It is as if

Koshalis by asking for recognition of our Matrubhsha, the language we learnt on our mother’s lap, we are somehow are hostile to Oriya as a language. Nothing of the sort. He graciously acknowledged contribution to Oriya literature by quite a few Koshalis. I can name even a dozen more. And I hope Koshalis  will continue to do so. During my recent trip to Sambalpur, my friend Uma Shankar Panda presented me his latest anthology of Oriya poems. I presume it is probably his 83 rd ! So what we need is not lecture/soliloquy but dialogue, not paternalism but equivalence/partnership, and not indifference/hostility but friendship. This way both Kowhai and Oriya will be winners.

Finally, who do you think solved the conflict between Oriya and Bengali ? It was T.Ravenshaw ultimately. My sincere plea to Dr.Patanaik and other lovers of Oriya is to  rise up to their moral responsibility to do the right thing by unblocking our access to 8 the schedule. This is what brothers do for each other. Longer this impasse festers, more bitter will be the relationship between our two communities. This will be cited as another instance of deliberate blockage of our progress. If this does not happen, then it will serve as a lesson  to be learnt for Koshalis.. Do not go toBhubaneswarfor getting  recognition for Koshali because Oriyas are playing the same game as Bengalis did against Oriya in 19 th century, just as an abused child becomes abusive parent. Campaign inNew Delhiin stead.

To be continued


Arjun Purohit,Canada, E mail:
PS: Forgive my typos as usual


The script of marathi and Hindi are same, both are flourishing,no issue, bengali and asameese language have same script,both are maintaining their Identity, the script of existing Odiya language and koshali are almost same, Nothing wrong in recognising that as a language also..Its very much possible inIndiaand why some one will object ???

Durga Misra,


 I completely agree with Shri Durga Misraji. During this discussion following points comes to my mind.

-There are many languages in the world with similar script. Most of the European languages use Roman script. They are still different. Each language is successful.

-German thinks that Dutch is a mixture of English and German language. So what? Dutch language is still alive and it has its own literature, heritage and culture. But, if you read and learn, Dutch is very different from German; it has its own grammar. One will realize the difference if she/he has mastered both the languages, that is German and Dutch. I would like to ask my fellow Odia friends to learn Kosli first, and then they will realize the difference.

-Late respected Shri Gangadhar Meher wrote his literary creations like Indumati, Arghyathali, Kichaka Badha, Pranaya ballari, Tapaswini etc. in Odia. Had he committed a crime? No! Was he opposed to Kosli as a language? We do not know for sure. As a Kosli I would like to see my fellow Koslites to snatch all the literay awards whether it is in Hindi, Bengali, Odia, English, Tamil, Telugu etc. If a Kosli person writes in other languages we should be proud of him. By writing novels in English Prof. Manoj Das is still recognized as an eminent Odia. By writing and speaking English, and drinking English wine a person will not be a Brit. Everyone is bound to their root-culture and languages. Therefore, I do not see any point how late Gangadhar Meher or any other persons deciding on our mother tongue.

-Matrubhasa is what my mother speaks. My mother speaks Kosli.

-A true language lover will never try to suppress a language. There are hundreds and thousands of languages in the world. While I was a children I use to read many English short stories translated from Russian language. I really love those short stories. Languages always compliment each other; they are not competitive.

Therefore, I do not see any fight between Kosli and Odia language. But some Odias fear that what will happen to Odia language, if Kosli will be a separate language. Nothing will happen to Odia language. It will flourish along with Kosli.

Best regards,


Sanjib Kumar Karmee,
The Netherlands,


 Sanjib Babu,

I read the entire article and all the responses as posted at your blog site. There is absolutely no doubt that Kosli (as you have named the language) has its uniqueness. Although, anyone of us can say it sounds like oDiA and looks like oDiA, but when one reads through and thinks through, there are many identifiable differences, especially in the grammar and usage. If I write Hindi using oDiA akhsyaras, then it will also sound like oDiA and look like oDiA. But the fact is, it is Hindi. Assamese and Bengali use the same script, but they do have a distinction between the two languages. I see oDiA and Kosli in those lights. I believe that Kosli should be given its due status as a language, whether anyone likes it or not.

Having said that, I do agree to some extend with Debi Babu’s suspicion that there are elements who will be motivated in using this as a tool to create a separate state. While, personally, I have no problem with the creation of a separate Kosala state, but I am afraid of the selfish motive of some elements, which might be a burden on true activists like you in the future, i.e. after the state is formed. At this point, we cannot do much about it.

I also loved the sentiments of your poem. Please do keep up the good work. You all remind me of our oDiA language activists of the past.


Debasmita Misra,


Mother language is the most powerful medium for any child to learn things quickly and efficiently. There are many countries in the world like that of Japan, China, Russia, Korea and even many European countries also where from education including Engineering & Medical to running the administration of the country is all in mother tongue.

Separation ofBangladesh from the unitedPakistan was the result of forceful implementation of URDU as the first language on the thenEast Pakistan.  Students of Dhaka University of the then East Pakistan had defied government orders and took protest march on the streets of Dhaka even at the cost of risking their lives to face dictatorial administration who were not in any mood to listen. Live bullets fired on them killed many students on that fateful 21st February. Struggle intensified which ultimately resulted in birth of a new country. 21st February is celebrated in a very big way as “AMAR EKUSE”. Now that date is  celebrated all over the world as Mother Tongue day.

Coming back to Odisha, it is up to the government, how  they deal with the demand of Koshali language or deal with the genuine sentiments of the Koshali speaking people. The neglect of western Odisha all these years in itself spills the beans. What is wrong in the demand to do justice with people of Western Odisha to do justice to their mother tongue! Why we should see politics in it?

Now, it is up to the Government of Odisha to do justice with the people speaking Koshali language in Western Odisha or else, tomorrow, if people take to the streets to demand Koshali as the main language in that area, it will be wrong to say they are doing politics.

Pravin Patel,

July 25, 2011 at 11:30 am 12 comments

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