Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Of Sanskrit and Stupid Hindus

Decisions to make Sanksrit compulsory taken by UPA: HRD Ministry

Last Updated: Thursday, December 4, 2014 - 00:17
New Delhi: The HRD Ministry today said the decisions to ask those central universities to explore the possibilities of opening of Sanskrit department where it doesn't exist and to ask CBSE to make the language compulsory upto class X were taken during the previous UPA government's tenure.
Officials of the Ministry referred to the circulars issued shortly after a national conference in Lucknow in September last year where it resolved to make Sanskrit compulsory in all secondary schools.
The Circular was sent to both the CBSE chairman as well as the NCERT director.
The communication to all central universities to explore the possibilities of opening of Sanskrit department?where department of Sanskrit does not exist was also issued on January 7 this year based on the resolution passed in the conference and not ?by the Ministry under the present dispensation, the officials said.
The late night clarification by the Ministry officials came after HRD Minister Smriti Irani earlier today said in a written reply in Lok Sabha that, "In order to promote Sanskrit language, the Central Government has requested all central universities, where department of Sanskrit does not exist, to explore the possibilities of opening of Sanskrit departments."
The reply had, however, not specified as to when the circular was sent to the central universities.
Irani's recent decision to replace German with Sanskrit as the third language in Kendriya Vidyalayas (KVs) has courted controversy, though she has insisted that German was being taught in violation of the National Policy of Education and the Three Language Formula.

First Published: Thursday, December 4, 2014 - 00:03 
  • Join the discussion…

    Sanskrit is a national language.
    Apart from being our heritage , it has significant merits of its own.
    It a well developed structured language.
    Learning it teaches a student to develop higher order thinking. This is useful in all field, from Science and Math to philosophy.
    A well developed brain, is the greatest asset an educational system can give to a child.

    • Modern Asian Studies
      Modern Asian Studies /
      Volume 39 / Issue 03 / July 2005, pp 683-723
      Copyright © 2005 Cambridge University Press

    • Journal of Indian Philosophy
      August 1996, Volume 24, Issue 4, pp 321-337
      Sanskrit scholars and
      pandits of the old school: The Benares Sanskrit College and the
      constitution of authority in the late nineteenth century
      Vasudha Dalmia

    • SCHOLARSHIP: Mark Pattison
      ANTHONY GRAFTONThe American Scholar
      Vol. 52, No. 2 (Spring 1983), pp. 229-236
      Published by: The Phi Beta Kappa Society

      The American Journal of Philology
      Publication Info
      Published by: The Johns Hopkins University Press
      Article DOI: 10.2307/287224
      Stable URL:
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      The Study of Hindu Grammar and the Study of Sanskrit
      W. D. Whitney
      Page [279] of 279-297

    • A Companion to Sanskrit Literature By Sures Chandra Banerji
      history of leprosy in India offers insights into one of the world's
      most misunderstood diseases. Furthermore, leprosy control and
      elimination in India still faces many challenges. Although many of the
      theoretical and practical approaches of the past have been discarded,
      their careful examination provides insights for the future. Sustaining
      the gains made so far and further reducing the disease burden in India
      require an innovative, holistic approach that includes ongoing
      education, efforts to identify interventions to dispel stigma, and the
      inclusion of nonallopathic practitioners in disease control programs.
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    • Avatar
      Leprosy in Post-Colonial India
      control marked the Indian government's initial approach, starting in
      1955 with the creation of the National Leprosy Control Program for
      surveillance. In 1983, with the availability curative multi-drug
      therapy, the government changed the name to the National Leprosy
      Elimination Program (NLEP), with a focus on treatment. Starting in 1997,
      the government conducted several modified leprosy elimination
      campaigns; these short, concentrated bursts of statewide case detection
      activities included orientation of all village-level workers and
      volunteers on leprosy, house-to-house searches in specified areas, and
      awareness programs using mass media, school activities, and community
      meetings. State governments also began integrating leprosy care into
      their general health systems starting in 1997, moving from vertical
      control programs to horizontal health services, an intervention shown to
      decrease the stigma associated with leprosy due to family counseling
      and community outreach [7].
      January 30, 2005 India celebrated the elimination of leprosy as a public
      health problem after achieving the nationwide prevalence of <1
      case/10,000 population, though not without criticism regarding the
      accuracy and choice of target parameter [8].
      This is a remarkable achievement given that in 1981, two years before
      NLEP, there were nearly 4,000,000 cases with a prevalence of >50
      cases/10,000 population [9].
      However, in a population of more than a billion people, up to 100,000
      people with leprosy remain, representing approximately half of the
      world's disease burden. Some regions, mostly rural, still have up to
      five times the national average of cases; these areas have become the
      next targets in leprosy control [10].
      future of leprosy control and elimination offers several challenges with
      both structural and cultural dimensions. Efforts to decrease health
      inequity due to poverty, especially in rural areas with limited access
      to health care, may help with leprosy control. However, if cultural
      beliefs are not addressed, increased availability may not translate into
      an appropriate increase in utilization. Cultural aspects of leprosy
      affecting its control include traditional medicine and stigma.
      limited efforts have been made to include the numerous nonallopathic
      (traditional) practitioners in India in leprosy control and elimination
      efforts, but their inclusion is important to its success [11].
      Indians can seek public or private health care from allopathic
      (conventional Western) physicians, but often see private practitioners
      of homeopathy or the three major Indian systems of medicine (ISM)
      including Ayurveda, Siddha, and Unani. The practitioners of ISMs, who
      outnumber allopaths in India, continue to use compounded botanicals and
      agents such as chaulmoogra oil for primary or adjunctive therapy. If
      this therapy fails, patients are referred to government clinics where
      free multi-drug allopathic therapy is offered; use of traditional
      medicine has been shown to be a risk factor for delay in diagnosis [12].
      The popularity of ISM can, as least in part, be attributed to two
      factors: the stigma carried by government-run vertical leprosy clinics
      and the preference for traditional medicine. Further investigation into
      the safety and efficacy of ISM therapies is needed, and the possibility
      of integrating aspects of ISM into the general health system should be
      evaluated. For example, chalmoogra oil may be effective as adjunctive
      therapy in wound healing [13].
      The effectiveness of leprosy control in this integrated system should
      be periodically assessed not only in measures of leprosy rates, but of
      changes in knowledge, attitudes, and practices.
      continues to be stigmatized in a society with a deeply ingrained,
      though legally abolished, caste system, partly through lack of
      knowledge. Socially marginalized groups such as women, “backward
      classes” (minority social or ethnic groups defined by the government),
      and the urban poor are less likely to seek care; they often view
      elimination efforts as problematic because they fail to account for
      their individual needs [14].
      Further, community education and medical knowledge of the disease does
      not immediately dispel stigma. In one community, only 30% of individuals
      claiming a high knowledge of leprosy also had a positive attitude
      toward patients with leprosy [15]. More studies are needed to better understand the causes of stigma and to assess the effect of interventions to decrease it.
      Hansen's disease is still called kusht
      in most Indian languages, as it was in Sushrutha's time. The word
      itself still evokes fear and aversion, despite Mohandas “Mahatma”
      Gandhi's efforts to destigmatize the disease. Parchure Shastri, a
      Brahmin and Sanskrit scholar who became an outcast when he acquired
      leprosy, came to stay in Gandhi's ashram in 1939. His
      contemporaries considered sheltering or touching a person with leprosy
      unthinkable, but Gandhi changed Shastri's wound dressings and massaged
      his feet daily. This iconic image (
      was later depicted on a postage stamp emblazoned with the words
      “leprosy is curable.” The cultural shift Gandhi desired is
      materializing; in 2005, representatives of the estimated 630 leprosy
      colonies in India met in New Delhi. Entitled “Empowerment of People
      Affected by Leprosy,” this conference sought to demarginalize those
      affected by the disease and reintegrate them into society.

    • Traditionally, India holds the
      unenviable position of the origin of leprosy. The disease is thought to
      have then spread, via trade and war, to China, Egypt, and the Middle
      East, and later to Europe and the Americas. From antiquity to modernity,
      Indian society treated leprosy singularly with respect to custom and
      law, a response shaped by both scientific knowledge and cultural
      attitudes. India's future challenges in leprosy control include multiple
      systems of medicine, stigma, and educational knowledge gaps. By looking
      through the historical window of leprosy in India, we propose that
      continued success in elimination and control requires a holistic
      approach addressing these issues (Image 1).
      PowerPoint slide
      larger image
      original image
      Leprosy in Ancient India
      Early texts, including the Atharava Veda (circa 2000 BC) and the Laws of Manu
      (1500 BC), mention various skin diseases translated as leprosy. The
      Laws prohibited contact with those affected by leprosy and punished
      those who married into their families, effectively ostracizing those
      with the disease for their past sins [1]. The Sushruta Samhita (600 BC) recommended treating leprosy—or kushtha,
      meaning “eating away” in Sanskrit—with oil derived from the chaulmoogra
      tree; this remained a mainstay of treatment until the introduction of
      sulfones [2].
      In a
      legend explaining chalmoogra oil's therapeutic origins, a king banished
      for his leprosy was instructed to eat the curative seeds of this tree,
      illustrating the cultural response to leprosy in antiquity: loss of
      social position and expulsion, even of kings, from the community [3].
      Ancient Indian society marginalized those with leprosy because of
      several factors: its chronic, potentially disfiguring nature;
      inconsistently effective therapy; association with sin; and the fear of
      contagion. This combination endowed leprosy with a unique stigma that
      persists today and resulted in its treatment with both seclusion and
      medical therapy.
      Leprosy in Colonial India
      after their arrival, Europeans described the uncommon practice of
      ritual suicide by those affected by leprosy, who were often assisted by
      their families. Though Hinduism generally considers suicide a sin, for
      leprosy it was not [4].
      Christians too associated leprosy with sin. Struck by the scale of this
      Biblical disease, Europeans, especially missionaries, singled it out
      from a myriad of tropical infections. They often described the most
      dramatic forms of disfiguring leprosy, evoking fear of an “imperial
      danger”: leprosy reaching the British Isles. The public pressured the
      colonial government for the segregation of people with leprosy.
      events over a 30-year period strengthened the argument for confinement.
      First, the first leprosy census in 1872 quantified the problem: over
      108,000 cases, for a prevalence of 54 cases/10,000 population.
      Approximately 1% received organizational support, renewing the cries for
      segregation to facilitate delivery of care [5]. Next, Hansen identified Mycobacterium leprae
      in 1873 and postulated it as the etiologic, transmissible agent of
      leprosy. Third, Father Damien, the Belgian missionary priest in Hawaii,
      contracted leprosy and died in 1889, proving its contagiousness. These
      events led to the popular consideration of leprosy as a widespread
      contagious disease requiring containment.
      response, the British government sent its Leprosy Commission (comprising
      both physicians and administrators) to India to investigate. The
      commission's report in 1891 concluded that “the amount of contagion
      which exists is so small that it may be disregarded” [6].
      Initially, the colonial government accepted these findings but, under
      increasing popular pressure from England and within India, enacted the
      Leprosy Act of 1898. This law institutionalized people with leprosy,
      using segregation by gender to prevent reproduction. For the
      self-sufficient individual with leprosy, segregation and medical
      treatment were voluntary, but vagrants and fugitives from
      government-designated leprosaria were subject to punitive action.
      Charities and local governments in British India constructed many new
      institutions for people with leprosy, providing combined social,
      religious, and medical services. However, as predicted by the Leprosy
      Commission, the lack of infrastructure prevented the Leprosy Act from
      being strictly enforced. It was repealed in 1983 after the advent of
      effective multi-drug therapy for leprosy.

    • Open Access
      Historical Profiles and Perspectives
      The Stigmatization of Leprosy in India and Its Impact on Future Approaches to Elimination and Control
      Jesse T. Jacob
      Carlos Franco-Paredes
      Citation: Jacob JT,
      Franco-Paredes C (2008) The Stigmatization of Leprosy in India and Its
      Impact on Future Approaches to Elimination and Control. PLoS Negl Trop
      Dis 2(1):
      Academic Editor: Charles King, Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine, United States of America
      Published: January 30, 2008
      © 2008 Jacob, Franco-Paredes. This is an open-access article
      distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License,
      which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any
      medium, provided the original author and source are credited.
      Funding: This
      work was supported by a grant from the Global Health Institute of Emory
      University. The funders had no role in the study design, data
      collection and analysis, decision to publish, or preparation of the
      Competing interests: Dr. Franco-Paredes serves as an associate editor (Clinical Symposia) for PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseaes.

    • The Future of Electronic Journals.
      Varian, Hal R.
      is widely expected that a great deal of scholarly communication will
      move to an electronic format. This paper speculates about the impact
      this movement will have on the form of scholarly communication. In order
      to understand how journals might evolve, the paper begins with a look
      at the demand and supply for scholarly commutation today, as well as the
      first-copy costs of academic journals. Two other costs are then
      mentioned: archiving and yearly costs-per-article read. A discussion on
      re-engineering journal production and the impact of re-engineering on
      costs savings follows. Further savings of electronic distribution on
      shelf-space, monitoring, information searches, and supporting materials
      are then outlined. The paper concludes that when all academic
      publication is electronic: (1) publications will have much more general
      forms; (2) new filtering and refereeing mechanisms will be used; and
      (3) archiving and standardization will remain a problem. A model for
      electronic publishing is also presented. (Contains 12 references.) (AEF)
      Descriptors: Cost Effectiveness, Costs, Electronic Journals, Electronic Publishing, Faculty Publishing, Higher Education, Information Dissemination, Information Storage, Information Technology, Nonprint Media, Printed Materials, Publications, Publishing Industry, Scholarly Communication, Scholarly Journals, Standards

    • Journal of Indian Philosophy
      October 2002, Volume 30, Issue 5, pp 431-439
      Introduction: Working Papers on Sanskrit Knowledge-Systems on the Eve of Colonialism
      Sheldon Pollock

    • The Thirteen Principal Upanishads: Translated from the Sanskrit with an ...

    • A Sanskrit-English Dictionary: Etymologically and Philologically Arranged ... By Sir Monier Monier-Williams

    • The Other Tongue: English Across Cultures edited by Braj B. Kachru

    • From Current Studies in Linguistics
      A Reader on the Sanskrit Grammarians
      By J F. Staal
      The achievements of Pānini and the
      Indian grammarians, beginning nearly 2500 years ago, have never been
      fully appreciated by Western scholars—partly because of the great
      technical difficulties presented by such an inquiry, and partly because
      relevant tutorial articles have been confined to obscure and
      inaccessible publications.
      This book makes available to linguists and Sanskritists a collection
      of the most important articles on the Sanskrit grammarians, and provides
      a connected historical outline of their activities. It covers studies
      and fragments ranging from early 7th-century accounts of the
      grammarians—recorded by Buddhist pilgrims from China and Tibet, by
      Muslim travelers from the Near East, and by Christian missionaries—to
      some of the best articles that have appeared during the last century and
      a half.
      Chapters in the book cover the foundation of Sanskrit studies in the
      West laid by British scholars working in India and including the
      detailed and accurate information provided by Henry Thomas Colebrooke;
      the linguistic evaluations of Pānini by von Schlegel and von
      Humboldt; the work of Bhandarkar and of Kielhorn; William Dwight
      Whitney's low evaluation of the "native" grammarians; and the
      philological work of modern Western, Indian, and Japanese scholars.
      The editor observes that materials in the Reader reveal
      problems tackled by the Sanskrit grammarians which closely parallel
      developments in contemporary linguistics. He has provided historical and
      linguistic commentary and bibliographic data in the introductions and
      notes that accompany each selection. Articles are in their original
      English, German, and French. Texts or passages in Chinese, Tibetan,
      Arabic, Sanskrit, Latin, and Greek have, for the most part, been
      translated into English, and all Sanskrit passages have been translated
      into the Latin alphabet.

    • If you are so smart, translate my following Sanskrit passage:
      काश्मिरराज्यराजपुरुषाः भ्रष्ठाः। काश्मिरराज्ये अभिवृध्दीकार्याणि स्थगितानि। अत्रस्थाः सर्वपक्शनेतारः दुक्वन्तः। जनान् विस्मरंतः अभिवृध्दीकार्याणि नेव चक्रुः। भ्रष्टाचारनिरताःएते स्वकार्याणि साधवंतः जनान् नेव परिगणितवंतः।
      Bunch of Idiots. Sanskrit language died when it was reconstructed from native group of languages, usually called 'Prakrit. Prakrit also died due to various reasons, not related to the death of Sanskrit. The most common language, created artificially is Urdu. It could be written in any known Indian scripts, say Devnagari, Tamil, Telugu, Kannada, Malayalan but not Bengali, as Bengali language, due to their crazy pronunciation cannot make Urdu understandable in the market place.
      Learn Sanskrit before farting about it. Idiot!
      ...and I am Sid Harth

    • Is that the reason why you rarely use your brain!!!
      sanskrit is awesome... this and that....
      but where can it be used? call center? programming? medicine? job? communicate? fly kites?
      the main reason why students were learning German was because they could go to Germany and learn professional courses like medicine and engineering for free. Yes you read it correct it is FREE.

    Source: Zee News

    ...and I am Sid Harth

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