GILGIT: The first ever Shina Primer will be launched soon as part of the effort of GB government to preserve and promote the local languages of Gilgit-Baltistan. The primer book will be taught to nursery students in state and private schools from February 2017.
An orientation session was held in Gilgit on Saturday attended by teachers from different schools. Renowned educationist Muhammad Amin Zia and Abdul Suboor briefed the participants about the Shina alphabets and how to read and write Shina.
Renowned poet and secretary water and power Zafar Waqar Taj said that the GB government is working to include all the local languages in school syllabus in order to preserve and promote the regional languages. The government has approved to establish a regional language academy to work on local languages, literatures and art, he added. He said the government will construct a state of the art building for the academy. This will also include auditorium, art gallery and museum. Chief Secretary Kazim Niaz has approved 15 million for this purpose, he informed.
Director Education Faiz Ahmed Lone said that training sessions will be organized for teachers to implement the Primer at school level.
A special committee was formed under the supervision of Zafar Waqar Taj to prepare the Shina Primer. The committee members included Muhammad Amin Zia, Jamshed Khan Duki, Ishtiaq Ahmed Yad, Abdul Hafeez Shakeer, Muhammad Nazeem Dia and Abdul Saboor.
The participants were informed that work is in progress on preparing Primers in Balti, Burushaski, Khowar and Wakhi languages. These Primers will also be taught at nursery level from February 2017.
There has never been any proper Primer book that students have used to study Shina or any local languages in the schools of Gilgit-Baltistan. The preparation of this Primer is a giant step to preserve the indigenous languages of Gilgit-Baltistan.
It is here to mention that Chief Secretary Gilgit Baltistan Dr. Kazim Niaz has approved preparation of PC-1 for establishment of regional languages academy mandated to preserve and promote regional languages, literature and art work.