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Graduates in Sanskrit, Urdu, Persian, yet can’t read the languages

Black_cats

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Graduates in Sanskrit, Urdu, Persian, yet can’t read the languages​


Graduates in Sanskrit, Urdu, Persian, yet can’t read the languages


On 7 October 2021, 11 candidates, aspiring to bag jobs in Dhaka University's Sanskrit Department, struggled to even read Sanskrit properly – a language they have to teach if recruited – before an interview board.

When the viva board started taking interviews, one candidate after another began to falter, eventually forcing the board to conclude the interviewing process without selecting an eligible candidate for employment.

"We have planned to change the syllabus and develop the existing curriculum to imbue students with proper knowledge in Sanskrit," Sanskrit Professor Dr Asim Sarkar, who was a member of the interview board, told The Business Standard.

He said, "It is not true that no one could read Sanskrit. Someone did better. We will issue a circular again and hope that we will get qualified candidates."

In another example, the Urdu Department of the same university could not find an eligible candidate to be recruited as a teacher in the department even after making three attempts. The department has issued three circulars since 2016 but has found no aspiring teacher with adequate knowledge of Urdu.

When contacted, Dr Md Rezaul Karim, chairman of the Urdu Department of Dhaka University, declined to make any comment in this regard.

The problem does not concern graduates from Sanskrit and Urdu departments alone. Many with degrees in Persian Language and Literature and Pali and Buddhist studies from Dhaka, Rajshahi and Chittagong universities could neither read properly in the languages nor write well.

Samiul, who graduated in Persian Language and Literature from Dhaka University in 2014, said 60% of his batch mates cannot write in the Persian language freely, while their reading skills are worse.

There are 3,710 students and 128 teachers at the Sanskrit, Urdu, Persian Language and Literature and Pali and Buddhist Studies departments in the three universities.

The average academic cost of each student per year is Tk1.5 lakh, meaning that the government spends about Tk56 crore to operate the departments.

Professor Dr Imtiaz Ahmed, a noted educationist, told TBS that a matter of concern is that most students of Urdu, Persian Language and Literature, Pali and Buddhist Studies and Sanskrit departments write answers in Bangla during examinations.

"I think the universities should bring the subjects under their respective language institutes rather than running separate departments for them," he said.

Professor Nasreen Ahmad, former pro-vice-chancellor (academic) at Dhaka University, said such departments are not in a condition to operate honours and masters courses with no qualified teachers.

"Once the departments had scholars who had deep knowledge of these languages. So, it is high time to abolish these departments, which now have no necessity," she added.

Sharing an experience, Nasreen said a second-year student of the Sanskrit Department came to her office to meet her. "I wanted to learn something about Sanskrit but the student had no knowledge of it. This is unfortunate."

"I tried to recruit some teachers for the Urdu Department, but I did not get any qualified ones," she said.

There were 43 students in the Urdu Department of Dhaka University in the 2013-14 academic session. They completed their masters in 2018. Of them, some have been doing jobs at different government and non-government organisations. A good number of them are yet to get jobs.

Unfortunately, no one has become a specialist in Urdu literature. And many students are completing graduation and postgraduation without adequate knowledge of Urdu language and literature.

The Business Standard also came upon a list of 250 former students of the Urdu Department, which shows that only one of them has been working as an Urdu lecturer at Sylhet Government Alia Madrasa. The rest have no connection with the subject and are not doing any research.

Shahin Alam, a former student under the 2013-14 academic session of the Urdu Department at Dhaka University, told TBS that students know that they will not get jobs if they learn Urdu properly. And that is why they concentrate on job-related studies just after passing the second year.

"A few students have some knowledge of Urdu literature and they can write fluently. But many have primary knowledge. We also had the option to write in Bangla and English in the exams. So, it was not necessary to have a high level of skill in Urdu," he said.

DU deans committee for decreasing seats

The Dhaka University Deans Committee recently took a decision to reduce the number of seats for first-year honours students in the Sanskrit, Urdu, Persian Language and Literature and Pali and Buddhist Studies departments.

The deans committee also recommended reducing seats at other less important departments like Arabic, Islamic Studies and Islamic History and Culture.

Sanskrit had been a part of the Bangla Department till 1970, when the Department of Sanskrit and Pali was established. In 2007, Sanskrit was given a completely separate identity.

The Persian language department was also part of the Urdu Department. In 2006, the Persian and Urdu Department was bifurcated into two independent departments and the Persian department was named as the Department of Persian Language and Literature.

Dr Md Mumit Al Rashid, assistant professor at the Department of Persian Language and Literature at Dhaka University, told TBS that the department admits 80-90 students every year. After completing the graduation course, the department does not get anyone willing to do research on Persian language and literature.

"Actually, it is impossible to teach language to 80-90 students at a time. We have urged the university authorities to reduce the number of students at our department. But the university authorities are yet to meet our demand," he said.

A former student of the department said no students willingly get admitted into the Persian Language and Literature Department.

Wishing to remain unnamed, a former student of Rajshahi University's Sanskrit Department said students had just wasted time at the department as they mastered neither Sanskrit nor any other subjects.

Professor Ataur Rahman, chairman of the Urdu Department at Rajshahi University, told TBS that the department has been trying to produce researchers on the Urdu language.

Urdu is not only a language of Pakistan but it originated in India. So, the graduates have the scope to have the language flourish while doing research on it.

Professor ASM Maksud Kamal, pro-vice-chancellor (academic) at Dhaka University, said the university will look into the matter and will discuss it with the higher authorities.

Professor Dr Selim Raihan, executive director at South Asian Network on Economic Modelling, said these departments can only allow admissions of a very small number of students who will contribute to research.

The universities must concentrate on innovating ideas and knowledge. They also must educate students, keeping in mind the future challenges they come across in the job sector.

But many departments enrol a big number of students who after graduation struggle to get good jobs, he added. ***

 

mb444

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BD needs to focus on STEM subjects to propel the nation forward.

Lauguages are important but they should be relevant... beyond english and arabic the focus should be on chinese, french and spanish.... that would cover majority of the globe...

These bogus... well maybe better to refer to them as academic subjects should be offered in a specialised way for a small number of people who are really passionate about it. History and non relevant languages still has their place i suppose.
 

Tom-tom

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BD needs to focus on STEM subjects to propel the nation forward.

Lauguages are important but they should be relevant... beyond english and arabic the focus should be on chinese, french and spanish.... that would cover majority of the globe...

These bogus... well maybe better to refer to them as academic subjects should be offered in a specialised way for a small number of people who are really passionate about it. History and non relevant languages still has their place i suppose.

I agree there should less emphasis on this subject but it still needs to exist for your cultural heritage. As some of your historical sites bears this script.

Also technical trade colleges should be started with English, Arabic, Japanese. In trade's like plumbing, electrical, gas, vehicle mechanics and dental hygenist and also dental nurse occupations. With Western or international accreditation.

You don't need to be a math genius any more to do IT full stack development, front end development, ux design. These jobs lead to you becoming a software developer as well

I heard bd started a college for marine professional looking to work on merchant ships with international accreditation? What happened to that?
 

mb444

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I agree there should less emphasis on this subject but it still needs to exist for your cultural heritage. As some of your historical sites bears this script.

Also technical trade colleges should be started with English, Arabic, Japanese. In trade's like plumbing, electrical, gas, vehicle mechanics and dental hygenist and also dental nurse occupations. With Western or international accreditation.

You don't need to be a math genius any more to do IT full stack development, front end development, ux design. These jobs lead to you becoming a software developer as well

I heard bd started a college for marine professional looking to work on merchant ships with international accreditation? What happened to that?


Vocational education is a must off-course, however the topic of conversation relates to degree and post grad level education.
 

pc_alt

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Graduates in Sanskrit, Urdu, Persian, yet can’t read the languages​


Graduates in Sanskrit, Urdu, Persian, yet can’t read the languages


On 7 October 2021, 11 candidates, aspiring to bag jobs in Dhaka University's Sanskrit Department, struggled to even read Sanskrit properly – a language they have to teach if recruited – before an interview board.

When the viva board started taking interviews, one candidate after another began to falter, eventually forcing the board to conclude the interviewing process without selecting an eligible candidate for employment.

"We have planned to change the syllabus and develop the existing curriculum to imbue students with proper knowledge in Sanskrit," Sanskrit Professor Dr Asim Sarkar, who was a member of the interview board, told The Business Standard.

He said, "It is not true that no one could read Sanskrit. Someone did better. We will issue a circular again and hope that we will get qualified candidates."

In another example, the Urdu Department of the same university could not find an eligible candidate to be recruited as a teacher in the department even after making three attempts. The department has issued three circulars since 2016 but has found no aspiring teacher with adequate knowledge of Urdu.

When contacted, Dr Md Rezaul Karim, chairman of the Urdu Department of Dhaka University, declined to make any comment in this regard.

The problem does not concern graduates from Sanskrit and Urdu departments alone. Many with degrees in Persian Language and Literature and Pali and Buddhist studies from Dhaka, Rajshahi and Chittagong universities could neither read properly in the languages nor write well.

Samiul, who graduated in Persian Language and Literature from Dhaka University in 2014, said 60% of his batch mates cannot write in the Persian language freely, while their reading skills are worse.

There are 3,710 students and 128 teachers at the Sanskrit, Urdu, Persian Language and Literature and Pali and Buddhist Studies departments in the three universities.

The average academic cost of each student per year is Tk1.5 lakh, meaning that the government spends about Tk56 crore to operate the departments.

Professor Dr Imtiaz Ahmed, a noted educationist, told TBS that a matter of concern is that most students of Urdu, Persian Language and Literature, Pali and Buddhist Studies and Sanskrit departments write answers in Bangla during examinations.

"I think the universities should bring the subjects under their respective language institutes rather than running separate departments for them," he said.

Professor Nasreen Ahmad, former pro-vice-chancellor (academic) at Dhaka University, said such departments are not in a condition to operate honours and masters courses with no qualified teachers.

"Once the departments had scholars who had deep knowledge of these languages. So, it is high time to abolish these departments, which now have no necessity," she added.

Sharing an experience, Nasreen said a second-year student of the Sanskrit Department came to her office to meet her. "I wanted to learn something about Sanskrit but the student had no knowledge of it. This is unfortunate."

"I tried to recruit some teachers for the Urdu Department, but I did not get any qualified ones," she said.

There were 43 students in the Urdu Department of Dhaka University in the 2013-14 academic session. They completed their masters in 2018. Of them, some have been doing jobs at different government and non-government organisations. A good number of them are yet to get jobs.

Unfortunately, no one has become a specialist in Urdu literature. And many students are completing graduation and postgraduation without adequate knowledge of Urdu language and literature.

The Business Standard also came upon a list of 250 former students of the Urdu Department, which shows that only one of them has been working as an Urdu lecturer at Sylhet Government Alia Madrasa. The rest have no connection with the subject and are not doing any research.

Shahin Alam, a former student under the 2013-14 academic session of the Urdu Department at Dhaka University, told TBS that students know that they will not get jobs if they learn Urdu properly. And that is why they concentrate on job-related studies just after passing the second year.

"A few students have some knowledge of Urdu literature and they can write fluently. But many have primary knowledge. We also had the option to write in Bangla and English in the exams. So, it was not necessary to have a high level of skill in Urdu," he said.

DU deans committee for decreasing seats

The Dhaka University Deans Committee recently took a decision to reduce the number of seats for first-year honours students in the Sanskrit, Urdu, Persian Language and Literature and Pali and Buddhist Studies departments.

The deans committee also recommended reducing seats at other less important departments like Arabic, Islamic Studies and Islamic History and Culture.

Sanskrit had been a part of the Bangla Department till 1970, when the Department of Sanskrit and Pali was established. In 2007, Sanskrit was given a completely separate identity.

The Persian language department was also part of the Urdu Department. In 2006, the Persian and Urdu Department was bifurcated into two independent departments and the Persian department was named as the Department of Persian Language and Literature.

Dr Md Mumit Al Rashid, assistant professor at the Department of Persian Language and Literature at Dhaka University, told TBS that the department admits 80-90 students every year. After completing the graduation course, the department does not get anyone willing to do research on Persian language and literature.

"Actually, it is impossible to teach language to 80-90 students at a time. We have urged the university authorities to reduce the number of students at our department. But the university authorities are yet to meet our demand," he said.

A former student of the department said no students willingly get admitted into the Persian Language and Literature Department.

Wishing to remain unnamed, a former student of Rajshahi University's Sanskrit Department said students had just wasted time at the department as they mastered neither Sanskrit nor any other subjects.

Professor Ataur Rahman, chairman of the Urdu Department at Rajshahi University, told TBS that the department has been trying to produce researchers on the Urdu language.

Urdu is not only a language of Pakistan but it originated in India. So, the graduates have the scope to have the language flourish while doing research on it.

Professor ASM Maksud Kamal, pro-vice-chancellor (academic) at Dhaka University, said the university will look into the matter and will discuss it with the higher authorities.

Professor Dr Selim Raihan, executive director at South Asian Network on Economic Modelling, said these departments can only allow admissions of a very small number of students who will contribute to research.

The universities must concentrate on innovating ideas and knowledge. They also must educate students, keeping in mind the future challenges they come across in the job sector.

But many departments enrol a big number of students who after graduation struggle to get good jobs, he added. ***

Surprised to see more students for Sanskrit than Urdu.
Also happy to see Pali being taught.
 

pc_alt

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Ban all the indian languages
What do you define as an Indian language.
As per West Pakistani leaders, Bengali was an Indian language and they did not want it in East Pak. But you guys fought for it.

Sanskrit is the root of many languages including Bengali.
 

R Wing

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BD needs to focus on STEM subjects to propel the nation forward.

Lauguages are important but they should be relevant... beyond english and arabic the focus should be on chinese, french and spanish.... that would cover majority of the globe...

These bogus... well maybe better to refer to them as academic subjects should be offered in a specialised way for a small number of people who are really passionate about it. History and non relevant languages still has their place i suppose.

I couldn't find a reference to it --- but I grew up hearing a story from my dad about a period in which South Korea essentially banned all of the humanities and social sciences (with a few exceptions) and forced everyone into STEM --- the rest were luxuries for the developed world, which SK wasn't a part of back then. The results are obvious (if this did actually happen!).
 

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What kind of jobs will these pali and Sanskrit grads get? These are dead languages, waste of time.
 

pc_alt

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What kind of jobs will these pali and Sanskrit grads get? These are dead languages, waste of time.
Probably not much .. one area I can think of is translating / decoding ancient literature into Bengali and adding to your historical / cultural heritage.
 

DESERT FIGHTER

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What do you define as an Indian language.
As per West Pakistani leaders, Bengali was an Indian language and they did not want it in East Pak. But you guys fought for it.

Sanskrit is the root of many languages including Bengali.
Yeah just had that on our currency? On Pak monument in lahore and so on?
Stop bastardising history you indian dung beetles.
 

SaadH

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What do you define as an Indian language.
As per West Pakistani leaders, Bengali was an Indian language and they did not want it in East Pak. But you guys fought for it.

Sanskrit is the root of many languages including Bengali.
Where did you pull this crock of horse $h!t from? RSS' WhatsUp history archives?
 

pc_alt

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Yeah just had that on our currency? On Pak monument in lahore and so on?
Stop bastardising history you indian dung beetles.
Okay.. you gave some token presence to Bengali, but clearly denied it the official language priviledge.. why else did the language protests happen?

Where did you pull this crock of horse $h!t from? RSS' WhatsUp history archives?
Why was Urdu chosen which originated outside Pakistan, rather than any of the languages within the regions of Pakistan.. Why Bengali was denied official language status?
 

khail007

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Pakistani speaking Hindustani as national language, while nationalists are scared of what kinda ramifications this would have on us in the future
But Pajeet saying you hate Indian languages... 🥵
Pakistani speaking Urdu language and not Hindustani. Urdu and Hindi are totally different languages. Due to the cultural invasion of 'Bollywood', some Pakistani are now adapting Hindi style/words in Urdu.
For example, listen and compare the news in Hindi on the Indian channel and news in Urdu on the Pakistani channel.
On YouTube, many Pakistani are using Hindi style and the word 'Hamaray saath Juray rahyay'; one could youse 'Hamaray saath shamil rahyay'.
 

Sainthood 101

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Pakistani speaking Urdu language and not Hindustani. Urdu and Hindi are totally different languages. Due to the cultural invasion of 'Bollywood', some Pakistani are now adapting Hindi style/words in Urdu.
For example, listen and compare the news in Hindi on the Indian channel and news in Urdu on the Pakistani channel.
On YouTube, many Pakistani are using Hindi style and the word 'Hamaray saath Juray rahyay'; one could youse 'Hamaray saath shamil rahyay'.
And that's why it's an Indian language cause it's similar enough to be influenced by rough sounding Hindi
And no they were in history not "totally" different languages
Pre ghalib Hindustani and Urdu we're different but he blurred the lines
 

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