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Teaching Sanskrit in an Interesting Manner can make the Language Popular in India, says Britain-based Teacher-Author Rohini Bakshi

Since music, dance and poetry are so deeply ingrained among all Indians, they can be used much more to teach Sanskrit, says Bakshi

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New Delhi, November 19, 2016: The only way to make Sanskrit popular in India is to teach it in an interesting way, says a Britain-based Sanskrit teacher.

Co-author of “Learn Sanskrit Through Your Favourite Prayers” (Juggernaut), Rohini Bakshi once almost failed in Sanskrit but is now actively persuading others to learn the ancient language which is often termed the mother of Indian languages.

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Bakshi feels that since music, dance and poetry are so deeply ingrained among all Indians, they can be used much more to teach Sanskrit. She herself does that in City Lit, an adult education college in London.

Rohini Bakshi, Twitter
Rohini Bakshi, Twitter

Bakshi was asked why Sanskrit is virtually dead in India as a popular language and how it can be popularized.

She says government initiatives can help spread the appeal of Sanskrit but not by making it compulsory in schools.

“Children hate anything they are forced to do, even if it is good for them,” Bakshi said in an email interview.

“The government should focus on the way teachers teach rather than taking the choice away from children.

“In general, improvements in teacher training are required, particularly so for a language like Sanskrit,” she added.

Bakshi and Narayanan Namboodiri’s 507-page book presents 11 of the more important Hindu prayers dedicated primarily to gods Vishnu and Shiva.

These include Ganesa Pancaratnam, Bhaja Govindam, Sri Hari Stotram, Rudrashtakam and Aditya Hridayam.

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The reader-friendly book has the Sanskrit ‘stotras’ in verse with the translation. In addition, there is an English transliteration, translation and grammatical analysis. There is also a Hindi translation of the verses.

Bakshit admits that the best way to learn Sanskrit is in a classroom with a good teacher.

“However, everybody does not have the luxury or the luck to find the right course or teacher,” she says. “For such people, a book like this one is an excellent support tool.”

Unless Sanskrit teaching becomes engaging and interesting, she feels that most people will either avoid or drop out of the class.

“Right now, in most Indian schools, a teacher stands up and talks at the children, rather than letting them take responsibility and ownership of the process,” she says.

“Engaging them, I feel, will have a revolutionary impact on Sanskrit learning.”

But can Sanskrit learning lead to economic betterment?

Bakshi admits that currently Sanskrit related jobs in India seem to be limited to teaching, astrology and being a pundit. She hopes things would change for the better.

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“In the short run, I hope soon we will have authors, TV presenters, musicians, actors, singers – and many other such opportunities for ‘Sankritists’.

“But it all depends on demand – the bigger the speech community, the more the opportunities.”

Bakshi is also the brain behind the unique way to learn Sanskrit through Twitter #SanskritAppreciationHour (#SAH). It now has a dedicated following across the world. (IANS)

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  • Diksha Arya

    Maybe this will help preserve this great language..

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Aadhaar Helpline Mystery: French Security Expert Tweets of doing a Full Disclosure Tomorrow about Code of the Google SetUP Wizard App

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Google Along with Other SSocial Media Giants will Face The Lawmakers, Wikimedia Commons
Google Along with Other SSocial Media Giants will Face The Lawmakers, Wikimedia Commons

Google’s admission that it had in 2014 inadvertently coded the 112 distress number and the UIDAI helpline number into its setup wizard for Android devices triggered another controversy on Saturday as India’s telecom regulator had only recommended the use of 112 as an emergency number in April 2015.

After a large section of smartphone users in India saw a toll-free helpline number of UIDAI saved in their phone-books by default, Google issued a statement, saying its “internal review revealed that in 2014, the then UIDAI helpline number and the 112 distress helpline number were inadvertently coded into the SetUp wizard of the Android release given to OEMs for use in India and has remained there since”.

Aadhaar Helpline Number Mystery: French security expert tweets of doing a full disclosure tomorrow about Code of the Google SetUP Wizard App, Image: Wikimedia Commons.

However, the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) recommended only in April 2015 that the number 112 be adopted as the single emergency number for the country.

According to Google, “since the numbers get listed on a user’s contact list, these get  transferred accordingly to the contacts on any new device”.

Google was yet to comment on the new development.

Meanwhile, French security expert that goes by the name of Elliot Alderson and has been at the core of the entire Aadhaar controversy, tweeted on Saturday: “I just found something interesting. I will probably do full disclosure tomorrow”.

“I’m digging into the code of the @Google SetupWizard app and I found that”.

“As far as I can see this object is not used in the current code, so there is no implications. This is just a poor coding practice in term of security,” he further tweeted.

On Friday, both the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) as well as the telecom operators washed their hand of the issue.

While the telecom industry denied any role in the strange incident, the UIDAI said that he strange incident, the UIDAI said that some vested interests were trying to create “unwarranted confusion” in the public and clarified that it had not asked any manufacturer or telecom service provider to provide any such facility.

Twitter was abuzz with the new development after a huge uproar due to Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) Chairman R.S. Sharma’s open Aadhaar challenge to critics and hackers.

Ethical hackers exposed at least 14 personal details of the TRAI Chairman, including mobile numbers, home address, date of birth, PAN number and voter ID among others. (IANS)

Also Read: Why India Is Still Nowhere Near Securing Its Citizens’ Data?