TODAY -

English as a Lingua Franca for NE

Kamal Baruah *



The phenomenon of linguistic globalization has brought enormous changes that influence every aspect of our lives. The growth of English and the emergence of the internet have enabled instantaneous global communication nowadays. Thanks to the rise of social media and 4G data that allows the rapid cross-pollination of ideas and innovation.

In the information society of the globalized world, there is a pressing need for a common language of communication. People are becoming more and more serious about language learning in their highly networked professional world. The English language has turned into a widely accepted means of international communication and has become the Lingua Franca (ELF) in 21st century.

Interestingly English is a vernacular in United Kingdom but it is used as a lingua franca in Asian countries (Philippines and India). Similarly Russian, Mandarin Chinese, Arabic, Spanish, Portuguese and French serve alike purpose in their countries. English is a Second Language (ESL) in European countries.

A Spaniard, a Frenchmen, and a German might carry on a conversation in English only. English is spoken by one in every four people worldwide (1.75 billion). It is almost 80 percent of non native English speakers in the world. It is the third most native language after Chinese and Spanish.

The British colonisation has led it possible to make English as world’s common language, the greatest gift to the world. British Council creates international opportunities for the people worldwide in educational opportunities and cultural relations.

English is becoming a core criterion in determining employability worldwide. It makes a significant contribution to sustainable global development in trade and business. IELTS (International English Language Testing System), the world most popular English test for higher education and global migration, is a must now to apply for a visa to stay in the UK.

India’s North East is not far behind. It is one of the most linguistically diverse states in India. English as a language of convenience is connected hundred languages of north eastern people. In comparison to area, it seems pretty good to have more than 25 English Newspapers circulations daily. An English news channel has recently been launched.

The biggest music festival at Shillong emerges as the rock capital of India. Tipriti Kharbangar of Soulmate, Lou Majow is just a few names. The world is dancing to the tunes of NE Bands at Alcheringa IIT Guwahati recently.

Ziro Music Festival, Orange Festival, Hornbill Festival are other important events. Its ubiquitous influence is felt by our young generation and NE culture is moving something of a renaissance.

Despite road infrastructure bottleneck coupled with misery and suffering across states, NE cities/towns have well nourished educational facilities at English as well as Vernaculars Schools. Our children have a right to a quality education that the constitution has given the fundamental right to every child on free and compulsory education or Right to Education Act (RTE).

Now they are able to bring a name in education, sports and cultural arena. Hundred of FM radio stations are transmitting from our land. Mizoram and Tripura are among the most literate states in our country.

Christianity plays a very important role among the daily life of Mizo community. I wonder how school goers can easily sing along in accompaniment with the tune of popular English album. The roman script is followed by many NE languages. Its only saving grace is the internet. All these ingredients helped us to adopt English as a common language in the North East.

“Content is King” the article was written by Bill Gates in 1996. He emphasized that long-term winners were those who delivered content based on information and entertainment. The huge vocabulary of English language is being influenced by French, Latin, Greek and Germanic languages (German and Dutch).

English has more words than most comparable world languages today. English is also very ready to accommodate foreign words and it shares grammar and basic vocabulary with other languages. Also English was a language of the ruling class Norman French and its Churches.

“Baidu” is Google’s counterpart in China. In spite of Chinese learn English to capture the world job market. So does Japanese for choosing English as international lingua franca in education. ESL industry is booming in China. Chinese parents cared for their children with an obsession to learning English. Is China the wild west of the teaching world?

Indian republic has been de facto divided into two states on the basic of language. Government is trying to impose and promote Hindi as Rashtra Bhasha. But South India and NE India won’t understand Hindi.

However, in the constitution, Hindi was declared as an official language and not a national language. Under Article 343, official language of the Union has been prescribed, which includes Hindi in Devanagari script and English. Since Hindi failed to become pan India language, English slowly capitalise it.

Parents lose faith to vernacular schools even in the remotest area of NE states. More number of English medium private institutions is coming up to cater the demand in the market. Now, in the age of the Internet and supremacy of English, the future of other languages looks bleak to students.

Is the future of mother language at stake? Do they get little attention? And English have become de jure King of Global Lingua Franca (EGLF).


* Kamal Baruah wrote this article for e-pao.net
The writer is a former Air Warrior and currently working for SBI Dispur. He can be reached at kamal(DOT)baruah(AT)yahoo(DOT)com
This article was webcasted on September 08 2019.



* Comments posted by users in this discussion thread and other parts of this site are opinions of the individuals posting them (whose user ID is displayed alongside) and not the views of e-pao.net. We strongly recommend that users exercise responsibility, sensitivity and caution over language while writing your opinions which will be seen and read by other users. Please read a complete Guideline on using comments on this website.




LATEST IN E-PAO.NET
  • 'Ishanou' Selection @ Cannes #1: Gallery
  • Violence in Manipur 2023-2024 : Timeline
  • MOU signed: MTI-HUB & KIIT-TBI & SAbF
  • Lament of the Mourning Choir :: Poem
  • "ST status for Meetei" at Wabagai
  • RSS-BJP fracas
  • Trials for Canoe Slalom World Cup
  • Poser from a villager says it all Kamjong
  • The cover-up effort
  • Birth Centenary of Jananeta Irabat, 1996 : #2
  • Manipuri women in the arena of politics
  • "ST status for Meetei" at Assam
  • Aimee Baruah at red carpet of Cannes
  • National Defence Academy Exam 2024
  • How digital media changed communications
  • Manipur stands scandalised
  • All eyes on UP battle
  • Descent of Radha-Krishna #32: Download
  • Riots to a shrine- Ram Mandir of Ayodhya
  • Handle with care. F.R.I.E.N.D.S inside!
  • The Power of Poppy - 31 :: Poem
  • Celebrate the journey !
  • Career counselling : A life guidance tool
  • Scientist of Manipur: Amom Ruhikanta
  • Conspiracy, thy name is Kuki !
  • "ST status for Meetei" at Thounaojam
  • Ket Meth New Album "Ghost Stories"
  • World Hypertension Day
  • International Day of Families
  • Let the rule of law prevail
  • When donation becomes obligatory demand
  • Tourism of Manipur through Gastronomy
  • Beyond Eternity :: Poem
  • Patriarch subjugation on women
  • Celebrate Manipuri Cinema shine at Cannes
  • Training on cultivation of various mushroom
  • Transformative impact of Ayurveda & Yoga
  • War for over a year : Delhi is answerable
  • The logic behind illogical chargesheet
  • Preserving Thang-Ta :: Rare Photos
  • Regarding Human Rights Situation in Manipur
  • World Hypertension Day 2024
  • Article 355 of Constitution of India #3
  • Disinformation campaign touba thengnarey
  • Deeply mourn the demise of Oja Biren Lamba
  • Water Mimosa for sustainable development
  • Publicity drives of educational institutions
  • ED's revolutionary move!!!
  • Malemnganbi Laishram : Science Topper
  • Featured Front Page Photo 2024 #2: Gallery
  • Thokchom Sheityajit : Arts Topper
  • Aiena Naorem : Commerce Topper
  • AISSE 2024 Exam Result- RKM Imphal
  • Gold, new world currency !
  • Milk for hair and skin
  • Of illegal immigrants & the larger picture
  • The missive from Kamjong
  • Hr Secondary Exam 2024 : Science Topper
  • HSE 2024 : Subject Pass Percentage
  • HSE 2024 : District Pass Percentage
  • HSE 2024 : Candidates with Highest Marks
  • Hr Secondary Exam 2024: Science Full Result
  • Hr Secondary Exam 2024: Arts Full Result
  • Hr Secondary Exam 2024: Commerce Result
  • Hr Secondary Exam 2024 : Arts Topper
  • Hr Secondary Exam 2024 : Commerce Topper
  • Sezo Ringa- Debut Music Video "Revival"
  • Journalism - A thrilling career #2
  • After Class XII where? The eternal question
  • Entry of Arvind Kejriwal
  • Birth Centenary of Jananeta Irabat, 1996 : #1
  • Our nurses, our future: Power of care
  • Screenplay Writing course concluded
  • Workshop on IP & Patent Filing held
  • Let there be less Politics in Sports
  • Sam Pitroda is absolutely white
  • Motherhood: Soul & spirit of family & society
  • Time has come to criminalise ecocide
  • Meiteis, a disappearing community in Manipur
  • World Bamboo Congress @Taiwan : Gallery
  • Ima Manipur should smile more
  • 2nd National Lok Adalat at High Court
  • The Power of Poppy - 30 :: Poem
  • Army impact on Tamphasana Wushu odyssey
  • Aftermath of ferocious hailstorm #1 : Gallery
  • "Dynamic library service" :: Book Rvw
  • Radio E-pao: Manipuri Film OST (130+ song)
  • Artificial Intelligence & Environment
  • Article 355 of Constitution of India #2
  • Integrated Farming Systems for farmers #4
  • Delhi's stand after 1 year of clash
  • A new type of terrorism
  • Scientist of Manipur: Waikhom Vishwanath
  • SRF, JRF, RA @ Assam University
  • The Bleeding River :: Poem
  • Executive Meeting of WMC Assam Unit
  • Journalism - A thrilling career #1
  • Raising the call to replace Minister
  • A storm in a political teacup
  • Cheirao-chingkaba @ Chinga : Gallery
  • Happy Mother's Day
  • Empowering hill communities via U-Mangra
  • African Swine Fever
  • Free Training on Mushroom at Nagamapal
  • Harshit Dhingaun recieves award from Korea
  • Look for ways to restore normalcy
  • The danger of last kicks of a dying horse
  • Preserving Thang-Ta traditions
  • Resolving ST issue by democratic process
  • Top 5 songs to awaken your inner patriot
  • Project Assistant @ Manipur University
  • Leishemba Sanajaoba conferred Doctorate
  • Double tragedy: No time for red-tapism
  • A Youtuber called Dhruv
  • Nupi Landa Thaunaphabishing : Full Book
  • 174th Anniv Maharaj Narasingh #2 : Gallery
  • Challenges in Healthcare in rural Manipur
  • A salute to leadership quality of PM Modi
  • Career in press for freedom of expression
  • One day after devastating hailstorm
  • Understanding the suffering of others
  • A ferocious hailstorm @Imphal : Gallery
  • Article 355 of Constitution of India #1
  • Integrated Farming Systems for farmers #3
  • Election gossip & rumours
  • 'Melodic Minds' Tour in Guwahati
  • Leaving a trail of destruction
  • Political see-saw
  • A brand-new Scientific discovery
  • In memoriam of the happiness we shared !
  • Crop/animal for higher productivity in NE #5
  • "ST status for Meetei" at Sekmaijin
  • Oh Motherland :: Poem
  • Animal life should be treated with dignity
  • '365 Days of Chin-Kuki Aggression' : Gallery
  • Renaissance of politics in our youth
  • TB & tobacco co-epidemics in Indonesia
  • The Power of Poppy - 29 :: Poem
  • Advanced Charging Infrastructure in NE
  • Lessons learnt in the last one year
  • True colour of politics
  • World Heritage Day @ MU : Gallery
  • "ST status for Meetei" at Kakwa
  • Joint Combing Operations in Jiribam
  • Reboot PSUs for jobs: Task for new Govt
  • Ayurvedic remedies to keep healthy eyes
  • May 3, 2023 to May 3, 2024
  • One year of crisis, and what next ?
  • Scientist of Manipur: Nongmaithem Rajmuhon
  • Whither social justice & work for women?
  • Taiwan to enhancing economic ties with India
  • Integrated Farming Systems for farmers #2
  • Athoubasingi Numit #2 : Gallery
  • Privilege trap of While Male Meitei
  • Crop/animal for higher productivity in NE #4
  • 'Chizami Model' working in Gujarat ?
  • Racing towards the one year mark
  • On misattribution & falsifying history
  • Nupi Landa Thaunaphabishing #15 :: Book
  • May Calendar for Year 2024 : Tools
  • 12th World Bamboo Congress at Taiwan
  • Complex dance of democracy in Manipur
  • "ST status for Meetei" at Pangaltabi
  • Integrated Farming Systems for farmers #1
  • Showing ugly face of muscle power
  • Spare the rod, spoil the monster
  • Descent of Radha-Krishna #31: Download
  • Socio-Historical analysis on Ethnic Conflict
  • "ST status for Meetei" at Langmeidong
  • Ngangbam Dipapati- Gold @European Cup
  • Crop/animal for higher productivity in NE #3
  • Fresh surge in violence
  • The real culprit
  • National Science Teacher workshop
  • Livelihood Disaster in Mapithel Region
  • Condemns Killing of CRPF Personnel
  • "ST status for Meetei" at Manipur College
  • Huidrom Oliviya: Silver @Cadet European Cup
  • Election: Runner-up may spoil the joy
  • Scientists of Manipur : Laishram Ladu Singh
  • Imphal Ring Road Project to Transform
  • Crop/animal for higher productivity in NE #2
  • The Power of Poppy - 28 :: Poem
  • Condemned unabated illegal taxation
  • Watermelon : Super nutritious summer fruit
  • People have spoken, Manipur has voted
  • Skirting around core issues
  • Lok Sabha polls in Manipur #2 : Gallery
  • The Taj Mahal that bans Lovers !
  • Importance of bees !
  • Massive hailstorm in Jiribam
  • The messiah of hapless children
  • Attack on fuel tankers & blasting bridge
  • Blame it on Meetei
  • The Happiness Code : Download
  • NH-2 Bridge bombed @Sapermeina : Gallery
  • Crop/animal for higher productivity in NE #1
  • Training Programme under SPARK concluded
  • Why environment control is so difficult
  • 4th Foundation Day- Young Minds Collective
  • All set for second phase poll
  • The Nongsaba phenomenon
  • Khongjom Day @Khebaching #1 : Gallery
  • India's responsibility to end Manipur violence
  • Migrant worker could access TB services only
  • Importance of reading magazines as student
  • SHG pioneering agricultural innovation
  • Nearing the one year mark
  • The enemy within
  • Id-ul-Fitr @Hatta #2 : Gallery
  • Workshop @ NSU Manipur : Gallery
  • 15th Manipur State Film Awards 2023
  • "ST status for Meetei" at Panthoibi Shanglen
  • GSDP doubles, health shines
  • Vote has been cast, repoll held
  • Two faces of democracy
  • Laurels for Scientist Ngangkham Nimai
  • Crime against women in Manipur
  • "ST status for Meetei" at Sugnu
  • Creativity & innovation for vibrant career
  • 4th Foundation Day of YMC
  • Racing towards one year mark
  • Prophetic words, indeed
  • Nupi Landa Thaunaphabishing #14 :: Book
  • 174th Anniv Maharaj Narasingh #1 : Gallery
  • Ensuring Fair Voting in Hills of Manipur
  • Dr Irengbam Mohendra's latest book :: Rvw
  • NDA has the advantage in both
  • Lok Sabha polls in Manipur #1 : Gallery
  • L Rup's Robot 'Kangleinganbi' in Manipuri
  • Art- means of connecting hearts in Manipur
  • Is it Living Alive or Living Death ? :: Poem
  • Rabies - A preventable zoonotic disease
  • April 19, 2024: The blackest day of all
  • Ugly turns on voting day
  • Children Camp @JNMDA Imphal #2 : Gallery
  • The chasm between TB & HIV continues
  • Parliament and its Members
  • Kimchi for health and glowing skin
  • LS election with a difference
  • To vote, or not to vote ?
  • Sajibu Cheiraoba Chak Katpa #2 : Gallery
  • Scientists of Manipur : Laitonjam Warjeet
  • Community seed bank @Umathel : Gallery
  • Saving Manipur
  • Sajibu Cheiraoba: 1 occasion, 2 narratives #2
  • Athoubasingi Numit #1 : Gallery
  • Id-ul-Fitr @Hatta #1 : Gallery
  • 80th Anniv- Battle of Kanglatongbi @UK
  • Hun - Thadou Cultural Festival : Gallery
  • Scientists of Manipur : Ngangkham Nimai
  • Sajibu Cheiraoba Chak Katpa #1 : Gallery
  • Beating of the Retreat #1 : Gallery
  • Kenedy Khuman (Singer) : Gallery
  • Students @ Class X Exam : Gallery
  • Save Manipur : Protest [Feb 15] #3 : Gallery
  • GHOST of PEACE :: Download Booklet
  • List of Kings of Manipur: 33 - 1984 AD