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“India Embraces Cultural Bond: Farsi (Persian) Named Among Nine Classical Languages Under New Education Policy”

In a significant development aimed at fostering cultural bonds, the Government of India, in accordance with the New Education Policy, has formally included Farsi (Persian) as one of the nine classical languages of India. This pivotal announcement was disclosed by External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar during his two-day visit to Iran, underscoring the deep-rooted cultural, literary, and linguistic ties between the two nations.

Farsi, also recognised as Persian, is an Indo-Iranian language within the Iranian branch of the Indo-Iranian languages. Renowned for its profound historical and cultural significance, Farsi extends its influence not only in Iran but throughout the broader Persian-speaking world. The language boasts an extensive literary heritage, with luminaries like Rumi and Hafez contributing significantly to Persian literature.

Before the inclusion of Farsi, India had acknowledged six languages as classical: Tamil (2004), Sanskrit (2005), Kannada (2008), Telugu (2008), Malayalam (2013), and Odia (2014). The criteria for granting ‘Classical’ status to a language encompass a recorded history spanning 1500–2000 years, a rich legacy of ancient literature, an original literary tradition, and distinctiveness from modern forms or derivatives. This move reflects India’s commitment to recognising and preserving the diverse linguistic and cultural heritage that contributes to the nation’s tapestry.

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