Classical Language of India:
- In 2004, the Government of India declared that languages that meet certain requirements would be accorded the status of a “Classical Language in India”
- High antiquity of its early texts/recorded history over a period of 1500–2000 years;
- A body of ancient literature/texts, which is considered a valuable heritage by generations of speakers;
- The literary tradition be original and not borrowed from another speech community;
- The classical language and literature being distinct from modern, there may also be a discontinuity between the classical language and its later forms or its offshoots.
- Tamil in the year 2004
- Telugu in the year 2008
- Malayalam in the year 2013
- Sanskrit in the year 2005
- Kannada in the year 2008
- Odia in the year 2014
Special status for Sanksrit in constitution:
- Hindi had become a symbol of nationalist feelings during the freedom struggle of India and the leaders encouraged its use.
- The Sanskrit had lost the position of official language of the Union by a casting vote. Article 343 gave Hindi the status of official language of the Union.
- For Sanskrit, there is a special status mentioned in article 351, whereby Sanskrit was given a position of the primary source language for many languages including Hindi.
Benefits of Classical Languages
- Languages in India declared as classical receive three primary benefits.
- First, two major international awards for scholars who have made significant contributions to Classical Indian Languages are awarded annually.
- Second, the government has also set up a Center of Excellence for the Study of Classical Languages.
- Last, Central Universities have also been requested to provide grants for Professional Chairs for Classical Languages.