For quite some time now,
Kashmiri Pandits' Association, Mumbai and Lalla-Ded Educational and Welfare
Trust have been working on Project ZAAN - a project to acquaint our
community members, particularly youngsters with various facets of their
motherland 'Maej Kasheer'. Two Volumes of Information Digest, have so far
been issued under the Project. The accent therein has, besides dissemination of
knowledge (ZAAN), been on arousing interest in our mother tongue -
Kashmiri, which is fast lapsing into disuse from amongst our families.
The present 'Basic Reader for Kashmiri Language'
is the third Volume in the series under Project ZAAN. The intent of
compilation of this Reader is to place before the readers, an
easy-to-comprehend Primary Book in Devanagari script, for reading Kashmiri.
Kashmiri dialect has micro articular variations, which have been amply
illustrated and distinguished by means of special set of vowel & consonantal
symbols and graphic lessons in syntax of the language.
In the present day diaspora of our community, when we
have lost our moorings, when we are facing cultural erosion, language seems to
be a lone factor for preservation of our identity. The 'Reader',
therefore appears to be a timely endeavour to revive interest of our youngsters
in their mother tongue.
The effort of the authors, Shri M. K. Raina and Smt
Neelam Trakru is laudable. Shri Raina is a serious student of Kashmiri
syntax for more than two decades. The duo has, after consulting many a authentic
source books, compiled this compendium, which we accept, may not be infallible
in itself. Readers may find some words alien to Kashmiri used at few places.
These words have been incorporated specifically for purpose of illustration in
the absence of Kashmiri words / idioms. We would welcome suggestions from the
language-knowing seniors in the community, to overcome shortcomings in our
future editions and other publications.
Authorís note on the Devanagari-Kashmiri Script, is
specially meant for elders and they are requested to go through it very
carefully. This will make it easy for them to help their youngsters to know the
script and the phonetics.
M. L. Mattoo
Lalla-Ded Educational and Welfare Trust
Navreh, 13th Chaitra, 2058
(26th March, 2001)