A five- day workshop on Capacity building of Urdu journalists and students of journalism in the Kashmir Valley started here at University of Kashmir on Tuesday.
The workshop has been organized by Educational Multi Media Research Centre (EMMRC), University of Kashmir in collaboration with National Council for Promotion of Urdu language (NCPUL), New Delhi.
While presiding over the inaugural session of the workshop Vice Chancellor Central University of Kashmir Prof Mehraj-ud-din Mir said “I hope this workshop will be an enriching experience for Urdu journalists and should allow them to upgrade their proficiencies, hone their skills, and acquire new technical skills that should allow Urdu journalism to thrive and flourish in the valley.”
Calling for the promotion of Urdu language and keeping it alive as a necessity for being in sync with Kashmir’s rich heritage, traditions and history in particular and with the history of the Indian -Sub Continent in general Prof Mir said that Urdu language was not only been spoken in the entire subcontinent but had a unique place in Jammu and Kashmir as well.
“However” Prof Mir lamented “Despite Urdu being our official language we failed to give it the kind of respect which it deserved and gone are the days when our entire revenue records and official correspondence would take place in Urdu and same is being replaced by English now.”
In her remarks acting Vice Chancellor, University of Kashmir Prof Nilofer Khan said “The workshop is important for all of us and it is our moral duty to make efforts for the promotion of the Urdu language which is the official language of Jammu and Kashmir UT.”
While maintaining that capacity building is very important for every discipline Prof Nilofar Khan said “Journalists have a great role to play and their writings and reports do bring a change and influence the overall policy making and planning and I hope this workshop would prove quite significant as far as promotion of Urdu language and Urdu journalism is concerned.”
Registrar, University of Kashmir Dr Nisar A Mir in his remarks said “Urdu journalism has played a great role in the freedom struggle of India and at that point of time Urdu was the language of the common masses. However these days we have confined and attributed it as the language of a particular community only which in itself is a big stereotype and discrimination.”
Speaking about the aims and objectives of the workshop Director EMMRC KU Dr Shahid Rasool said “Urdu is still the third most important language in the Indian subcontinent after Hindi and English and Urdu newspapers are presently getting published from 18 states of the country. The language played a great role in the freedom struggle of Indian but with the passage of time we became complacent and things didn’t improved as they should have. It is with this aim that the present workshop has been organized so that Urdu journalists and students of journalism should go all out in taking advantage of new technological advances that are radically changing the way information is reached to masses for the promotion of Urdu language.”
Director NCPUL Dr Aqueel Ahmad deliberated upon the role played by NCPUL for promotion and preservation of Urdu language across the country and said that NCPUL conducts such camps and workshops round the year for refining the skills of the Urdu working journalists and sharpening their skills.
Noted columnist, writer, producer EMMRC KU Ajaz-ul-haque delivered the keynote address during which he highlighted the problems and challenges faced by the working journalist in the valley and said that “only such languages prosper which have the official patronage from the governing regimes and as far as Urdu is concerned it has faced discrimination on that front from a long time now.”
The proceedings of the inaugural session were conducted by Producer EMMRC Tariq Abdullah.
The workshop was attended by journalists from print and electronic media, officials from Directorate of Information & Public Relations UT J&K, students and faculty members from IUST, MERC KU, Urdu Dept KU, Womens College MA Road, Degree College Baramulla and Degree College Anantnag,