Mother Tongue Survey of India Completed by Union Home Ministry

Mother Tongue Survey of India Completed by Union Home Ministry

November 12, 2022 - 6:19 am

National Informatics Centre will set up online archive on 576 languages

The Mother Tongue Survey of India (MTSI), which included field videography of 576 languages and dialects throughout India, was successfully completed by the Union Home Ministry. The National Informatics Centre (NIC) will set up an online archive to preserve and study the original taste of each indigenous mother tongue, according to the Home Ministry's annual report for 2021–22. The Linguistic Survey of India has been a regular study endeavour in the nation since the implementation of the 6th Five Year Plan, according to the Ministry of Home Affairs.*

What is the Mother Tongue Survey of India Project?                                      

A project called the Mother Tongue Survey of India "surveys the mother tongues, which are regularly returned throughout two and more Census decades." The linguistic characteristics of the chosen languages are also documented. According to the study, the National Film Development Corporation (NFDC) and the NIC will record and preserve the linguistic information of the mother tongues surveyed in audio-video files. For the sake of archiving, videotaped Mother Tongue speech data will also be uploaded to the NIC survey. Following the exercise in enumeration and processing, the data will be made available for use by reputable universities, research centers, academics, students, and other data users. Additionally, it will be accessible for free download on the Census of India website. Additionally, to provide data access, Census Workstations have been put up in 18 different universities and institutions across the nation.

What is Mother Language?

The term "mother language" is one that the respondent has provided, but it does not need to be the same as the actual linguistic medium. There are more than 19,500 languages and dialects spoken as mother tongues in India, according to the 2018 release of data from the 2011 linguistic census. After linguistic analysis and rationalisation, these 19,500 languages were divided into 121 mother tongue categories. According to 2011 linguistic census data, Hindi is the most spoken mother tongue by 52.8 crore people of the country, accounting for 43.6% of the population. Following that, 9.7 crore people or 8% of the population spoke Bengali, making it the country’s second most popular mother tongue. 


What are Scheduled Languages?

At the time of presentation in 2001, there were 22 scheduled languages. The census from 2011 still uses the same 22 languages. These 22 languages are included in the Constitution's Eighth Schedule. — Oriya, Kashmiri, Punjabi, Sanskrit, Assamese, Bengali, Malayalam, Gujarati, Hindi, Kannada, Manipuri, Marathi, Nepali, Sindhi, Tamil, Konkani,Telugu, Santhali, Maithili, Urdu, Bodo, and Dogri. The Constitution was initially drafted in 14 of these tongues. In 1967, the Sindhi language was added. In 1992, three additional languages—Konkani, Manipuri, and Nepali—were added. Bodo, Dogri, Maithili, and Santhali were subsequently added in 2004. In the constitution, the phrase "national language" is not defined. English and Hindi, however, are designated for use for official purposes of the central government, including business in Parliament, for Central and State Acts, and other purposes, according to the Official Languages Act of 1963.


What is Cutting-Edge Geospatial Technology? 

The use of cutting-edge geospatial technology to enable effective processing and prompt dissemination of data is one of many new efforts that have been made to facilitate the performance of the major exercise, which has been put on hold because of the Covid-19 outbreak. Pre-census mapping operations include the construction and updating of maps showing administrative units of the states and UTs, districts, sub-districts, villages, towns, and wards within towns in order to provide accurate coverage of the whole geographical region of the country. Additionally, initiatives are being made to make the Census results accessible online using interactive maps. As a prelude, work has already begun in this direction. Some of these endeavors include training all mapping personnel on the newest software and purchasing new versions and re-modules for quickly and effectively completing the Census mapping duties.

The Way Forward

The next decennial census will be the 16th since the initial exercise was carried out in 1872. The seventh census since independence will take place. The georeferenced database has been updated with jurisdictional changes that took place in the nation between Census 2011 and December 31, 2019, and more updates are being made since the frozen period has been prolonged till June 30, 2022. More than 6 lakh maps (at the district, sub-district, and village levels) have been created and uploaded for census employees. These maps will be revised and completed up until June 2022 in accordance with changes in the jurisdiction. National and master trainers have received the necessary instruction in the House Listing Block (HLB) Mobile Mapping App for the first time in order to georeference all enumeration blocks of the upcoming census in the nation. Instructions manual on the use of mapping apps has been prepared in English, Hindi, and regional languages.